|Protection and Counseling: Legal Aid Center for Female Victims of Violence - Herat|
Project Name: Legal Aid Center for Female Victims of Violence - Herat
Project Type: Protection and Counseling
Project Location: Herat City
Duration of Project: Since July 2009
Donor and Partner of Project: EVAW Special Fund of UNIFEM Afghanistan , National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development (NCDO) and Fayaz Foundation.
Status of Project: Ongoing
HAWCA opened a legal aid center, Legal Aid Center for Female Victims of Violence, in Heart city in the month of July 2009. This project has been funded by EVAW Special Fund of UNIFEM Afghanistan and National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development (NCDO) with the help of an Afghan organization, Fayaz Foundation, based in Netherlands, active in lobbying and advocacy for Woman's Rights. This center will work for the victims of domestic violence, sexual violence and harmful practices.
According to the national and international media, Heart has been reported as "The Center of Domestic Violence". Herat Province has the highest rate of self-burning by women and girls in the whole Afghanistan. Last year, the hospitals in Herat reported that 150 women and girls who have burned themselves had been brought to hospital, but of course there are more cases that haven't been brought to the hospitals and other health center which are all the outcomes of different kind of violence in particular domestic violence.
Another reason for selecting this area was because women from neighboring provinces of Farah, Kandahar, Nimroz, Ghor and Helmand would have the access to get legal assistance and legal advices. Right now, there is no legal aid center and safe houses in the above mentioned provinces. Therefore, HAWCA believes that establishment of legal aid center in Heart province is convenient for other provinces as well and victims of violence would find a source to help them get their rights and reach to courts and justice.
In this center, two lawyers with the help of under-graduate law students/practicing lawyers provide legal advice and assistance for women and girls who are victims of domestic and sexual violence and harmful practices. This legal center also provides legal trainings to the recently graduated law students and other women and girls. The content of the trainings for the law students is more focused on how to deal with their clients to gain their trust and help them out. Other professional trainings are also provided to them. We also have trainings for other women and girls. These trainings include the women rights in Afghanistan Constitution; International Law and etc. The trainers of these trainings are law professionals and lecturers from Law Faculty of university. Besides this the legal aid center tries to establish a close coordination and relation with organizations that provide legal aid and advice to females.
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