Legal Awareness, Communication and Outreach

What do people do when something goes wrong? How is 'crime' understood and handled in communities who lack access to legals services? How do people handle serious disputes in the absence of a neutral arbitrator? We need a basic understanding of the laws designed to protect us, and a knowledge of justice principles that enable us to claim our rights - especially to equality and fairness.

Building legal knowledge amongst populations who have limited access to legal services, who rely upon informal legal structures, or who have to represent themselves in legal processes, is fundamental to improving access to justice in general.  Communication is often overlooked or tacked on in development programming – GJG believes in quality communication, education and empowerment as being integral to improving rule of law. What we offer is an approach that engages target populations with genuinely interactive mechanisms through which to build legal knowledge and learn to apply this in practice to improve their situation. We work together with communities to identify barriers to positive change and craft communication and empowerment strategies together. We work to bridge gaps between decision makers, services providers and the communities they serve.

Access to Justice programming that does not invest in communication and outreach will fail to affect change amongst the people it wishes to reach.

Forum theatre for justice in communities in Myanmar.

GJG practitioner, Melissa Eveleigh has developed national communication strategies in South Sudan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Malawi and Zimbabwe, and together with local partners has a proven track record of excellence in developing materials and training practitioners to facilitate, manage, monitor and evaluate positive change through Forum Theatre, Interactive Radio, and Mass Media.

Melissa Eveleigh has developed the interactive methodology used by paralegals all over the world to provide those stuck in the prison system with legal education and empowerment to access their legal rights. The paralegal training video below was produced Yellow Rose for GIZ and the Ministry of Home Affairs, demonstrates part of interactive methodology in practice.