April 16, 2021
AdvocAid is celebrating it’s 15 year anniversary, having been continuously working for women and girls’ rights since 2006,according to a press release from the organisation.
“From four volunteers when AdvocAid was founded, the organisation now has a majority female team of 22 staff. AdvocAid has provided legal advice and support services to more than 6,000 women and girls in contact with the law, secured the release of 6 women and 3 men from death row, reached over a million women through it’s award-winning legal education series ‘Police Cast’ and successfully advocated for new legislation in Sierra Leone,” the release states.
The organisation states that as Sierra Leone marks 60 years of independence this month, they saw it as a joint celebration,adding that they will be holding celebration events with girls, women and staff in some of the country’s female correctional centers, highlighting the continued need since independence and AdvocAid’s founding to improve detention conditions for women and girls.
AdvocAid’s Executive Director, Rhiannon Davis, comments:“Since AdvocAid started working with women in contact with the law 15 years ago, Sierra Leone has made huge progress in access to justice and women’s rights, but there remains a long way to go. We are celebrating our anniversary by sharing the stories of the women and girls we work with to advocate for reform and a fairer justice system for the next generation of Sierra Leonean girls”.
The ornganisation further states that throughout the year,they will be marking the anniversary by celebrating the work of their dedicated staff and sharing the powerful cases of the women they have worked with.
“AdvocAid’s daily police station and court monitoring across Sierra Leone shows that women and girls rarely have appropriate legal support, and many do not know their legal rights. Poverty and imprisonment frequently go hand-in-hand, and that Sierra Leone’s laws are too often shaped by men for men. Whichever reason propels a woman or girl to be in contact with the law, the stigma of time in prison leaves women shunned by their families, communities, and society, and so begins again the cycle of risky coping mechanisms making them increasingly likely to come into contact with the law. It is this unjust inequality that drives AdvocAid as much today, as it did in 2006.”
Trust, transparency and collaboration have been central for AdvocAid over the past 15 years. We are grateful to our partners and donors for their collaboration and support and this partnership approach will remain central for AdvocAid for the next 15 years.