ASF in Zambia

  • Location: 1 central office in Lusaka
  • Date of establishment: First ASF project in Zambia in 2015
  • Equipe: 2 national colleagues

Background

Many obstacles stand between the population of Zambia and the exercise of their rights: people in general lack knowledge and awareness of their rights, courts are not easily accessible and access to legal advice and support is too costly. The legal system is based on both written and customary law which frequently contradict each other, making some legal regulations incoherent and resulting in widespread corruption.

Women in particular, as well as other vulnerable groups, are the true victims of this situation, whilst they also suffer cultural prejudices regarding their position in society. Customary law is sometimes at loggerheads with the concept of gender equality. Often, even legal professionals lack knowledge of women’s rights. Even though the law has been amended to include far stricter punishment for offenders, women are regularly the target of discrimination on both a legal and social level, as well as gender-based violence.

In collaboration with the YWCA organisation, which has been working in the country for nearly 60 years, ASF aims to enable women to have better control over their lives and strengthen their rights. This will have positive repercussions on their socio-economic status, but also on that of their families and communities as a whole.

ASF’s projects in Zambia

Women’s Rights and Access to Justice

  • Partner: Young Women’s Christian Association of Zambia (YWCA)
  • Budget: € 625.245
  • Funding: European Union
  • Duration: October 2015 > October 2017
  • Contact: cvancutsem@asf.be
  • Description: ASF and YWCA aim to work at local and national level. In the North Western Province and Northern Province, we will empower women so that they know, secure and enforce their human and democratic rights. As such they will be able to take more control over their lives and enforce their rights, which also creates better conditions for the socio-economic development of these women, their families and communities. At national level, we will advocate for improvement of gender equality and democratic rights in the policies and legal framework, and for development of the legal aid policies and laws. The action concentrates on women, but will also work with other stakeholders such as men, traditional leaders and public institutions.
  • Activities:
    • Provide legal services: legal advice by paralegals, civic education on women’s rights and human rights, legal advice and support from lawyers and counsellors to survivors of gender-based violence (GBV).
    • Strengthen the capacity of paralegals and counsellors and other stakeholders.
    • Organize, collect and analyse the data related to the beneficiaries’ situation to feed the advocacy efforts.

December 2016: news from the Butemwa Women’s Group (PDF)

ASF’s publications and the latest news from Zambia

Foto © Manoocher Deghati-IRIN

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