GENDER RESEARCH & ADVOCACY PROJECT
RESEARCH AND ADVOCACY
Domestic violence: GR&AP has launched its report on implementation of the provisions on protection orders in the Combating of Domestic Violence Act. Read more.
GR&AP is continuing to lobby for improved operation of Woman and Child Protection Units and improved integration of service providers who deal with gender-based violence.
Marital property: GR&AP is working in partnership with the government’s Law Reform and Development Commission to develop draft legislation on marital property reform, which would include the removal of race-based laws which have survived in independent Namibia as well as addressing persisting sexual discrimination under customary law
Child protection: GR&AP is working in partnership with the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare to lobby for the passage of a new Child Care and Protection Act, after assisting the Ministry with a broad national consultation process and helping the Ministry to revise the bill on the basis of public input received.
Maintenance: GR&AP is conducting an assessment of the operation of the new Maintenance Act by collecting information from a sample of courts nationwide on applications for maintenance orders and maintenance orders granted, in order to put forward recommendations for improving the implementation of the Act. It should be noted that effective application of this law is crucial to many women’s ability to leave violent relationships, and to free themselves from economic dependency on men.
Divorce: GR&AP is lobbying for passage of draft Divorce Act based on GR&AP research with action as necessary to complement government efforts to consult public about proposed reforms.
Customary marriage: GR&AP is lobbying for passage of draft Recognition of Customary Marriages Act which is based in part on GR&AP research. GR&AP will take action as necessary to complement government efforts to consult public about proposed reforms and in the future will prepare educational material on new law.
Inheritance: GR&AP conducts research, lobbying and advocacy around law reforms and implementation issues relating to inheritance.
Cohabitation: GR&AP conducts research, lobbying and advocacy around law reforms and implementation issues relating to cohabitation.
Read an article from our archive (1996): Engaging in engaging research
COMMUNITY EDUCATION AND OUTREACH
Films: GR&AP has produced 4 films about gender-related issues.
Comics: GR&AP is producing comics in 3 languages about gender-related issues. The comics are circulated as inserts in the daily newspapers. The Namibian reports a circulation of 320 000 for a Friday. This means that approximately 20% of the population may be reached through this method of dissemination.
Radio and television: GR&AP has a weekly slot on Good Morning Namibia, the Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) breakfast television show, and a weekly radio slot on NBC National Radio Young and Cool. GR&AP also records shows for the NBC National Radio show Your Rights Right Now and gives live interviews for other radio stations on request.
Educational materials: GR&AP continues to develop educational materials on gender-related laws in English and indigenous languages, as well as the production of specialised materials for persons with disabilities (including materials in Braille, which have already been produced on maintenance, rape and domestic violence).
Community workshops: GR&Ap continues to conduct regular community outreach initiatives
Training: GR&AP continues to train service providers, including police, social workers and magistrates – primarily on request. Workshops also provided on request to NGOs and community members as required, and dissemination of training materials including PowerPoint presentations which other groups can use in their own training and outreach initiatives.
LITIGATION AND ADVICE
The GR&AP takes on a limited number of clients for litigation related to its areas of research, working in cooperation with LAC’s Human Rights and Constitutional Unit.
GR&AP is currently coordinated by Dianne Hubbard, an experienced academic lawyer who has held the post since the inception of the project. She takes responsibility for planning and coordinating projects and administering budgets, as well as being deeply involved in the project’s legal research and advocacy activities. She has a law degree from Harvard Law School and has taught Gender Law in the Law Faculty at the University of Namibia. She serves on the Boards of Sister Namibia and the Ombetje Yehinga Organisation.
Rachel Coomer is the Public Outreach Manager for GR&AP. Rachel has been with GR&AP since October 2007. She has a degree from Oxford University and is currently finishing a Masters degree at the University of the Western Cape. She has a background in technical writing with particular skills in the production and communication of education materials. Her role in the department is to plan and supervise all outreach functions, including the development of educational materials, the dissemination of research findings, communications and media liaison. Rachel also conducts training workshops for GR&AP.
Yolande Engelbrecht is the Paralegal for GR&AP. Yolande joined the LAC's Gender department in February 2009 as a Project Assistant and was promoted to a Paralegal post in July 2009. She is planning to enrol for a law degree with Unisa in 2011. She spearheads the grassroots outreach for GR&AP and conducts numerous training workshops.
Yolanda Itamba is the Project Assistant for GR&AP. She manages the administration for the project with a particular focus on publications distribution. In 2009, GR&AP distribution over 174, 000 publications.
GR&AP extends its capacity by making use of a range of short-term consultants, interns, volunteers and visiting academics. For example, we regularly host interns from Harvard Law School and the University of Pennsylvania Law School, as well as independent interns from a range of countries. These interns are often well-placed to carry out research on comparative law, and they benefit at the same time by being exposed to human rights work in Africa.
Click here to find out more about GR&AP's accomplishments.
Read our 2006 supplement about GR&AP
Read a recent opinion piece (31 July 2012): NDP4: Great for children, disappointing for women
Learn more about GR&AP activities in the following PDF documents:
Further activities from previous years can by viewed in the LAC's Annual Report