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medica Liberia conducts Policy Dialogues In Southeast

medica Liberia, a women’s rights organization has concluded a series of women rights legal awareness and policy engagement activities between March 17 -23 2021.
The events were funded by the Government Bank for Development (KFW) in Grand Gedeh County and Medicor Foundation in Sinoe County.
The organization working with women and girls affected by Sexual and Gender and Violence (SGBV) in Liberia conducted four legal awareness forums targeting women and county stakeholders in the capital cities and remote parts of the Sinoe and Grand Gedeh Counties under the theme ‘Marriage, Family and Property Laws’.
Similarly policy dialogues were held in each county with county level stakeholders and women rights organizations under the theme ‘Promoting Women Centered Land Governance in Rural Communities’.
The events brought together more than three hundred women including county level stakeholders in both counties and the town hall meetings included Women Access to Justice; Marriage Under Dual Legal System; Traditional and Statutory weddings, Inheritance Rights of Women and Children in Traditional and Statutory Settings, and Women Land Rights.
Others participants included the various sectors of the society, including the Ministry of Justice, the Liberia Land Authority, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Rural Women Association, Civil Society Organizations (CSO) and community residents among others.
During the panel discussions, the obligations and roles of county authorities and local structures in securing women land rights were emphasized while the laws concerning these issues were made much clearer during the discussion, traditional authority vowed to always protect women rights.
The realization of fair and equal rights for women in marriage and property seem far from becoming a reality due to gender norms that continue to marginalize women, the legal awareness empowered women to take proactive actions which seek support and It is possible that this newfound knowledge could be a beginning of a long journey to demanding their rights.
By the end of the weeklong activity, it was reported that women became more aware of their legal rights and available services within the Counties to access when needed and have the opportunity to engage with local government and policy makers and discuss issues affecting them.
Speaking at the end of the activity in Zleh Town, Grand Gedeh County, Cecelia Quaye stated, “I am happy that medica Liberia is educating us women about our rights and from now on, I myself will start standing up for myself because I know my rights now.”
The legal awareness activities were facilitated by female lawyers from the JSGB and Associates Law Firm in collaboration with the county attorneys of Grand Gedeh and Sinoe Counties respectively.

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