FIDA Ghana http://www.fidaghana.org FIDA Ghana Tue, 24 Jun 2014 12:17:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 Marriage is Wonderful but Equity During Divorce may be Far-fetched http://www.fidaghana.org/marriage-is-wonderful-but-equity-during-divorce-may-be-far-fetched/ http://www.fidaghana.org/marriage-is-wonderful-but-equity-during-divorce-may-be-far-fetched/#comments Tue, 24 Jun 2014 12:17:09 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=663 Read More]]> The law should be a shield for the weak and powerless, not a club for the powerful” Gov. Roy Barnes (Equal Justice Conference, 2004).

 

 Adwoa Attah and Kojo Adom were married under Customary Law in 1984. Adwoa is a petty trader while Kojo is a trader. The couple did not have any children; however Kojo Adom fathered children outside the marriage. Further, Kojo subjected Adjoa to physical and emotional abuse and eventually sacked her from the matrimonial home. Adwoa filed for divorce before a court of law claiming a share of the matrimonial property which she alleged was jointly acquired property. Kojo’s defence was that the house was in his name and that any contribution by Adwoa was what a customary law wife was expected to do to support the husband. After six (6) years of trying this case, the trial court judge passed judgment ordering for the sale of the matrimonial house and the money shared between the couple. (culled from FIDA Legal Aid 2008)

 

This case study presents one of many examples of property rights issues faced by Ghanaian women. In this article I will attempt to examine the areas of law governing property rights of couples in the event of dissolution of marriage.

 

Three main issues are present in this case which I will expatiate on. First there is marriage, second there is divorce and third distribution of property at divorce. Let’s begin by getting a clear understanding of marriage. According to the Cambridge International Dictionary of English, marriage is the “legally accepted relationship between a woman and a man in which they live as husband and wife or the official ceremony which results in this”. Applying this definition to the Ghana context, there are three kinds of legally recognised marriage.  Marriage under customary law occurs when two parties, the man and woman being of 18 years or more consent to marry, which is followed by ‘consent’ of their families, and celebration of the marriage that involves exchange of gifts including the dowry.  Requirements for customary marriage may have slight variations depending on the ethnic groups the parties belong to. This kind of marriage is also potentially polygamous and may be registered under the Customary Marriage and Divorce Registration Law, 1985 (PNDCL112). Marriage by Muslims after celebration of the ‘awuri’ must be registered under the Marriage of Mohammedans Ordinance (Cap 129) for it to be recognised as such by the State. A Muslim may marry up to 4 wives. Then there is marriage under the Marriage Ordinance (Cap 127), which unlike the other marriages is strictly monogamous and must comply with the provisions under the law. Any deviation makes the marriage invalid.

 

Now let us discuss the second issue present in our case – divorce. Again divorce by the Dictionary is the legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body. We could add that divorce is the reorganising of the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage, thus dissolving the bonds of matrimony between married couples under the rule of law. Like marriage, there are three means by which a couple can dissolve the marriage. These are customary divorce which is usually before families of the two parties, divorce before a court of law and Islamic divorce. Just as parties registered their marriages, so are parties expected to get certificates/documents to signify the end of their unions.

 

Now to the exposé of the third and crux of the case which is the distribution of property at divorce. Often in the event of separation or divorce the issue of who owns what share of matrimonial property rears its ugly head. In fact the confusion starts with defining and labelling matrimonial property. Despite evidence to the contrary, society still perceives that when a couple builds their matrimonial home it is through the hard work of the man. More than 80% reported cases to the NGO International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA Ghana) show that husbands and wives jointly acquire matrimonial property through financial and in-kind contributions. The former include unilaterally or jointly paying for land or mortgage, buying or contributing to building materials. The latter include paying for groceries, utility bills, child care, housekeeping, picking children from school and sometimes staying at home to care for young children. The above being fairly common with married couples, one would expect that when parties dissolve the marriage distribution of the jointly acquired assets should not be a problem. Unfortunately that is not the case.

 

FIDA Ghana receives an influx of cases involving women whose husbands have unfairly taken jointly acquired property including the matrimonial home. These women often contribute to the building of the matrimonial home. In more than 60% of the disputes that arise, husbands claim that they financed the matrimonial homes alone and because many women do not have receipts it is difficult for them to prove their financial contribution.

 

Claims by husbands of clients of FIDA are not different from the position of the courts many years ago. The historical development of the law regarding the property rights of spouses started with the decision of Quartey v. Martey (1959), which largely mirrors the traditional customary law position which generally asserts that a family’s property belongs to the man upon cessation of the marriage. More than thirty years following the decision of Quartey v. Martey, the law continued to change and develop as the traditional roles of men and women in Ghanaian society continued to evolve. As women became more economically independent and played a greater role in the acquisition of family property, the law recognised women’s contribution to family property, as seen in the 1974 decision of Yeboah v. Yeboah, the 1976 decision of Abebrese v. Kaah and the 1982 decision of Achiampong v. Achiampong. These decisions clarified and concretized the principle that as long as the wife could prove “substantial contribution” to the family property in question, she was entitled to a share of it.

 

The coming into force of the 1992 Constitution which provides under Article 22 that “Parliament shall, as soon as practicable after the coming into force of this Constitution, enact legislation regulating the property rights of spouses [….] spouses shall have equal access to property jointly acquired during marriage. Assets which are jointly acquired during marriage shall be distributed equitably between the spouses upon dissolution of the marriage” should have changed things. Clearly the framers of the Constitution intended that Parliament would follow-through with the necessary legislation to deal with this issue. However, Parliament has enacted no such legislation. Absence of a statute on property distribution notwithstanding, the principles for dissolution of marital property has evolved from a demonstration of substantial contribution for courts to activate rules of equality is equity.

 

The changing attitudes of courts towards recognition of contribution of parties to marital property including the influence of Article 22 of the Constitution are reflected in the Supreme Court’s 2012 landmark case of G. Mensah v. S. Mensah which marked the beginning of significant changes in the law of the property rights of spouses in Ghana. In the words of Justice Jones Dotse, “it is a sad reflection that since 7th January 1993 when this 4th Republican Constitution came into force, the above directive has as yet not been complied with. [….] such fundamental philosophical principles which underpin distribution of marital property acquired during the subsistence of a marriage upon its dissolution should not be glossed over.” The Supreme Court is right in moving ahead with the present positing of the law.  This case is significant because it lays down the principle of “equitable sharing of joint property”. The Court specifically decided that property jointly acquired during marriage becomes joint property of the parties and that such property should be shared equally at divorce.

 

I am sure many couples are wondering whether the equality is equity principle espoused by the Supreme Court can apply to them if theirs is a customary marriage, an Islamic marriage or if they do not have children between them. Even if the marriage is a customary one, or one contracted under Islam,  the Matrimonial Causes Act, 1971 (Act 367) allows parties to go to court distribution of marital property.  Whether or not a couple has children between them or with others is one of the factors that the court will consider.  It is important women understand that not having children with the husband does not detract from their property rights.

 

I make reference to the Property Rights of Spouses Bill which resurrects every now and then only to be quickly killed and buried because Parliament never gets round to discussing it. It contains very laudable provisions which clearly outlines what is separate and joint property, considers parties in cohabitation as spouses after satisfaction of certain conditions and even introduces marriage agreements. My expectation is that the Bill will not suffer another death with the present Parliament.

 

Coming back to the case of Adjoa Attah and Kojo Adom, after six years of having to prove her contribution of the matrimonial property, the court passed judgement applying the decision of Mensah v. Mensah in declaring that the property should be sold with the proceeds divided between the couple.   A long drawn battle in court is certainly unwelcome to many women but until the Property Rights of Spouses Bill is passed into law, to provide tangible legal framework to handle property rights the only means is to fight for one’s rights.

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Create effective and efficient Referral System http://www.fidaghana.org/create-effective-and-efficient-referral-system/ http://www.fidaghana.org/create-effective-and-efficient-referral-system/#comments Tue, 28 Jan 2014 16:53:55 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=660 Read More]]>

In October last year, the Ghana Police and the Ministry of Social Welfare were involved in an incident where a young mother was exhibiting signs of emotional and mental stress.  She was caring for an infant daughter in unsanitary conditions in an open area on the Spintex Road, and fellow citizens became concerned about the child’s welfare.

 

When police officers, a representative from the Ministry of social Welfare and an officer from DOVVSU arrived, the woman became combative and physically assaulted the officers by biting their hands and chests. To subdue her, the officers had to call for reinforcement, and five officers were forced to physically restrain her.

The woman was eventually taken to the Accra Psychiatric Hospital for diagnosis and treatment. The child, however, was taken into custody by one of the citizens who reported the matter to the police.

The police initially brought  mother and child to Osu Children’s Home. Consequently, workers at the home refused to accept the infant out of fear that the girl’s mother would return and violently reclaim her.

This unfortunate episode is one of the many examples of the lack of a reliable protection and referral system for the vulnerable in Ghana.

A protection and referral system is a system of networks and contacts that a person or agency utilises to serve a vulnerable population.

According to the Child Protection Working Group of Save the Children UK, in laymen’s terms, the system is: “Whatever exists on the ground at that time for the protection of children in terms of laws, policies, regulations, monitoring processes, services and workers and their availability, quality, reach, integration and coordination.”

Ideally, this system will involve different branches of government, as well as outside service providers. The hallmarks of the best referral systems are cohesion, efficiency and sensitivity to the needs of its client base.

In Ghana, the police, Ministry of Social Welfare, and the judicial services branch of government have an imperative to work together and form a cohesive and well-managed system for servicing vulnerable people, especially children.

Runaways, missing and exploited children often do not have access to services that could help to ameliorate their situations, and the services that are available are often disorganised, convoluted and confusing. At a meeting with several branches of government, FIDA-Ghana learned that when police picked children, they often have no place to send them.  The police are prohibited from holding minors in cells, so they are often kept behind desks and other places.  while discussing these issues, a representative from the Ministry of Social Welfare suggested that children in Accra should be sent to the Osu Children’s Home until their families were located. Many members of the police service were unaware that they had this option.

This is strong evidence of a disgusting trend of lack of communication between the agencies.  Social Welfare and the Ghana Police Service should be working together to find the best solutions – temporary and permanent – for missing and exploited children. Instead, there is a piecemeal routine that leaves many children without the help and resources that they need.

The meeting gave several ministries and agencies the opportunity to discuss their grievances, frustrations and successes. The results were astounding. There is a fundamental lack of communication and understanding among the ministries.

Inaction, corruption and indifference plague segments of all the ministries. This reputation is a blight and canker on agencies and ministries that are charged with ensuring all people have access to justice.  In many areas, the police do not have the knowledge or resources to handle missing, runaway and exploited children adequately.

While the ministry of Social Welfare has the knowledge and resources to aid these children, the lack of dialogue between the two bodies keep this information from reaching those police officials who work on the ground.

This problem is compounding the issues already plaguing vulnerable children, and the absence of collaboration impedes, delays and discourages justice and favourable resolutions for these victims.  It is a disgrace and a dishonour to Ghana to allow this to continue.

In addition to the lack of communication between agencies, ministries and branches of government, ignorance of the law within service providing sectors of government abounds.

At the meeting, several members of the Ghana Police Service recalled instances where domestic violence cases were turned away because they were considered “family issues.” This practice is a direct contradiction to the Domestic Violence Act of 2007.

The act, which makes domestic violence a statutorily criminal offence, mandates that perpetrators to be arrested and brought to justice. Other ministries were aware of these stipulations and the police practices, yet they refused to check this unlawful behaviour. This is a disservice to all Ghanaians.

Government bodies and law. enforcement agencies  should be collaborating to bring about the best services for the citizenry. By turning a blind eye to the structural deficiencies which plague other agencies and government bodies, a ministry or government agency is compounding the problem because its inaction is delaying key changes that will help to deliver quality service and help to the citizenry.

In order to make long-term, structural change, the government bodies must work together in steps to build community-based changes in the referral system, as well as changes to the structure of response to issues as a whole.

UNICEF advises that government agencies and service providers first engage in a snapshot assessment of the environments of their respective communities.

Instead of continuing the current piecemeal trend of evaluating each case as it comes in, a snapshot assessment would give each government ministry, agency and service provider a clear picture of the issues and challenges affecting the communities that they work with.

This information will allow them to take proactive steps together to create awareness, identify key priorities, help to plan the distribution of resources and promote the creation of a clear service delivery plan.

It is time for institutions to be held accountable. They are in place to serve and protect the people of Ghana.  Instead, they have been habitually serving themselves to the detriment of the people.

There is no doubt that the majority of government workers are honest and hardworking individuals striving to make Ghanaian government agencies and ministries more responsive to the needs of its citizens.

These people must come together and collaborate on ways to work together, as well as discuss the necessary steps to quash those who tarnish the names of their agencies.

Educating workers on the laws, bringing them together and exchanging ideas and challenges are the most effective ways to set the groundwork for a referral system to ensure that women, children and the vulnerable do not slip through the cracks of justice anymore.

Additionally, communication and a referral system must extend to the community members. In many places, especially the rural areas, traditional, religious and district assemblies with child panels are typically the ones to handle cases regarding child welfare, domestic disputes and cases involving other vulnerable populations.

If these leaders are not knowledgeable about the laws and the ministries in place to handle these problems, then many exploited and abused women and children will remain  on the peripheral of the justice system.

By putting these recommendations in place, Ghana will tremendously reduce cases like the one on Spintex Road.

The article was written  by FIDA Ghana

email: fidaghana@africaonline.com.gh or info@fidaghana.com

 

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REQUEST FOR CONSULTANCY SERVICES TO ASSESS THE FIDA-GHANA PARALEGAL SYSTERM http://www.fidaghana.org/request-for-consultancy-services-to-assess-the-fida-ghana-paralegal-systerm/ http://www.fidaghana.org/request-for-consultancy-services-to-assess-the-fida-ghana-paralegal-systerm/#comments Tue, 07 Jan 2014 13:12:12 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=653 Read More]]>

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR ASSESSEMENT OF THE FIDA-GHANA PARALEGAL SYSTEM

PROJECT TITLE: “IMPROVING WOMEN’S ACCESS TO JUSTICE IN GHANA THROUGH COMMUNITY RESPONSIVE INITIATIVES

 

1.      The Implementing Organisations

 

(a)   FIDA-Ghana has been providing legal services to women in Ghana for over 30 years. In 1974, FIDA-Ghana established the first free Legal Aid Service in the country, extending vital legal services to women whose recognition in Ghanaian law would otherwise be severely restricted. Today, FIDA’s community-based volunteers (paralegals) continue to ensure that rural women have access to services such as counseling, mediation, legal advice and court representation.

 

(b)   STAR GHANA is a multi- donor pooled funding mechanism (Funded by DFID, DANIDA, EU and USAID) to increase the influence of civil society and Parliament in the governance of public goods and service delivery, with the ultimate goal of improving the accountability and responsiveness of Ghana’s government, traditional authorities and the private sector.
 

2.      Background

 

About two-thirds of the Ghanaian populations have little or no access to the courts as a result of the inability of government to provide adequate number of courts nationwide. The scoping study commissioned by STAR Ghana confirms this assertion as the study reveals that 88 districts do not have magistrate courts. For those in existence at the community level they are inaccessible, unaffordable and fraught with undue delays. This leaves women and marginalized members of communities with limited options in seeking redress for violation of their rights. Traditional authorities may be the first avenue for women to seek redress but FIDA-Ghana’s experience has revealed that many of them are not knowledgeable about the national laws and international human rights laws that promote and protects the rights of women. Their judgments are based on unfriendly customary laws that are biased and discriminatory against women. FIDA-Ghana has found that indigent women whose livelihoods and safety are most vulnerable are unfortunately also the least likely to be able to access justice for violations perpetrated against them. The establishment of the State’s Legal Aid Scheme, provides opportunities for poor women to access justice but the scheme is confronted with logistical challenges and their offices are often geographically inaccessible to citizens, as they are located in the regional capitals.  The District assembly system instituted to bring development to the door steps of the people, provide opportunities to build strategic partnerships to improve women’s access to justice. Indeed, about 25% of community members trained as paralegals by FIDA are assembly members and they have been instrumental in providing office space at the community level for trained paralegals to conduct mediation. They have also been supportive in facilitating legal literacy education in communities.  Moreover, Legal literacy education activities fit into the Decentralization Action Plan to enhance public awareness of citizen’s rights and make available channels for redress. One of the activities under this project is to conduct regular public education on citizens’ rights through community outreach meetings. As identified in the scoping study, inter-institutional cooperation is essential in improving access to justice for the vulnerable and marginalized populations. FIDA-Ghana has in the recent past also collaborated with staff of Legal Aid Board to provide court representation for poor women in the Northern region. This project provides the opportunity to upscale efforts to strengthen such inter-institutional collaboration with the Legal Aid board and the District assemblies in four districts of the Northern, Volta, Brong Ahafo and the Greater Accra regions.  The proposal will advocate for District Assemblies to incorporate the community paralegal concept into the local governance processes to broaden access to justice for women and the marginalized at the grass roots.

 

Accessibility to courts is often fraught with bureaucratic procedures, which often intimidates illiterates and poor women. These major barriers deter women from obtaining court orders that will ensure women’s access to justice.  As rightly acknowledged in the Scoping study judicial processes are cumbersome and most poor people do not have access to the formal channels for justice services. Therefore poor people, particularly women do not receive timely access to justice. Recognizing that the informal justice systems are more responsive to the needs of local communities, FIDA-Ghana introduced the paralegal concept, over a decade ago where community leaders, are trained to provide legal aid and follow up cases reported to them. They form a supportive network and are strategically placed at the door steps of community members. This project intends to assess the major achievements of the paralegal scheme in relation to its stated aim and intended outcomes and to what extent the scheme has responded to priority issues at the community level, the value of the intervention in relation to empowering a community group to engage effectively with the district assemblies in order to improve women’s access to justice. The findings and recommendations of the Evaluation will form the basis for advocating this concept in the work of the district assemblies, as free legal aid services provides an avenue for women and other vulnerable groups to attain agency to achieve self realization. The concept of community participation in the provision of basic legal aid services in collaboration with the district assemblies will also ensure sustainability of services after the project ends. FIDA has produced a simplified manual of legal procedures to train women on how to present legal cases at the family courts, the manual also serves as a practical guide for legal aid officers, beneficiaries and NGOs and CBO’s working to promote and protect women’s rights. To ensure uniformity during the empowering sessions, FIDA intends to publish 500 copies of the procedure manual and disseminate them to the District Assemblies, and Legal Aid Board.

 

3.        Project Aim

The aim of the one year project seeks to enhance citizen participation and improved inter-institutional cooperation for the improvement of access to justice for women and marginalized groups in 3 regions of Ghana – Northern, Volta, Greater Accra and Brong Ahafo.

4.  Specific Project Objectives:

Outcome Enhanced citizen participation and improvd inter-institutional   cooperation for the improvement of access to justice of women and   marginalized groups at the district level.

 

 

5.      SCOPE OF WORK

 

 

Purpose and Objective of Assignment

 The Evaluator/Consultant will consider the following-

 An assessment of Quality and Relevance of Paralegal scheme

 

To what extent does the scheme respond to priority issues?

What is the value of the intervention in relation to national priorities, etc.?

Do stakeholders care about the project and believe it brings change?

 

Effectiveness

 

Assess the major achievements of the paralegal scheme in relation to its stated aim and intended outcomes.

  • Assess what has been achieved by the paralegal scheme thus far, including qualitative evidence (e.g. opinions on the project’s effectiveness based on impressions and interviews with target groups, partners, government, etc.)
  • How many women and girls has the project benefitted (direct and indirect) and how?
  • Identify any major weaknesses and shortcomings of the paralegal scheme explaining why they have occurred and what can be done to ensure they are avoided in the future.
  • Assess Capacity gaps,
  • Impact
  • The evaluator will assess to what extent the scheme has achieved its goals and made a difference and how the targeted population is being affected.

 

 

Potential for sustainability, replication and magnification

 

The evaluator is expected to assess the key factors affecting sustainability of the project, such as:

  • What are the social and political environment/ acceptance of the paralegals?
  • Is the paralegal scheme contributing to lasting benefits?
  • How viable are the role and sustainability of the paralegals in the long term?
  • Is there evidence of organisations/partners/communities that have copied, upscaled or replicated project activities beyond the immediate project area? Is such replication or magnification likely?

 

Provide lessons learnt and recommendations on ways forward

 

  • Share key lessons learned.
  • Make recommendations on the key strategic options for future scale-up, and relevant modifications to this strategy.

 

6.      Data Collection Method

 

The consultant will employ both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. They will use variety of data collection tools including, but not limited to participatory methodologies, interviews, focus groups, and field observations among others. And a collection of tools they perceive as being appropriate for capturing and analyzing the information required. Where appropriate, the consultant will also suggest an appropriate sample, which will be both cost effective and provide significant results.

 

7.      Profile of the Consultant

 

We are seeking an evaluator who can provide evidence of some or all of the following skills and expertise:

  • Proven knowledge and analytical capacity in relation to women’s human rights and gender equality as well as international development issues.
  • Specific knowledge of women’s human rights and gender equality issues in particular addressing violence against women
  • Demonstrable experience in research and data collection (both quantitative and qualitative).
  • Ability and/or experience to analyse lobbying activities and work towards women’s empowerment and gender equality.
  • Excellent inter-personal and communication skills.
  • Experience of working with women and grassroots organisations
  • Experience in evaluating projects in rural and urban areas, related to the field of lobbying and gender empowerment
  • Experience of participatory research methodologies
  • Demonstrated knowledge of gender and women’s rights issues in Ghana and the impact of the current political and socio-economic situation on these
  • Ability to listen and communicate well
  • Capacity to gather information

 

8.      Evaluation Outputs and Deliverables

The consultant is expected to provide the following deliverables:

  • Methodology, Work plan and budget
  • List of people and institutions consulted/interviewed.
  • A  comprehensive assessment report with practical recommendations;

 

9.       Content of Report

The consultant is expected to prepare the final evaluation report, which should include the following:

 

I)                     Introduction

  • Title of project
  • Aim of the project
  • Date of evaluation and names of evaluator(s)
  • Methodology of the evaluation

 

II)                  Executive summary

  • Brief description of project, including objectives and strategies proposed to achieve   them.
  • Background to the evaluation (who carried it out and summary of Terms of Reference)
  • Conclusions and general evaluation (highly successful/ successful / partially successful / unsuccessful)
  • Summary of recommendations

 

 

III)                Report (preferably no more than 30 pages) – addressing all the points included in point 6 of the Terms of Reference

IV)   Appendices’

  • Terms of Reference
  • Comments and observations for partner not contained in main body of report.
  • List of interviewees
  • List of documents consulted
  • Statistics and case studies
  • Formats used (questionnaires etc.)

 

 

10)    Timeline for implementing the evaluation assignment

The review will be carried out for 20 days.  Exact dates will be agreed with the consultant before commencement of the assignment.

 

Application Process

Interested applicants should send their expression of interest to fidaghana@africaonline.com.gh and info@fidaghana.org by Friday 14th January, 2014. This should include applicants CVs, budget, workplan and a sample of previous work.

The successful applicant will be notified by 20th January, 2014.

 

 

 

 

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TERMS OF REFERENCE http://www.fidaghana.org/terms-of-reference/ http://www.fidaghana.org/terms-of-reference/#comments Thu, 07 Nov 2013 13:19:38 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=645 Read More]]>

FIDA/OSIWA ASSESSMENT MEETING WITH STATE ACTORS

TERMS OF REFERENCE

1.     BACKGROUND

Ghana is a heavily legislated country but it remains without significant dividends for a broad category of women, as far as access to justice is concerned. Many young women living in the project area are in consensual unions. Male partners feel less obliged towards supporting female partners as the unions have not been formalised, and this also extends to the children of these unions.

 

There is also a difficulty for lawyers in pursuing these cases, as it is difficult to argue for substantial contribution for these women. In the case of female spouses, they are expected to assist their husbands, financially or materially to acquire property. Yet if there is a divorce, the woman is not entitled to any of the property as of right. State actors and duty bearers are often ignorant of the laws and are unable to apply these laws effectively to respond to women’s rights violations.

 

It is relevant exercise to engage duty bearers such as Domestic Violence and Victim Unit (DOVVSU) of the police service, social welfare officials, and registrars of family courts by sharing information that will strengthen their capacity to address the gaps between legal commitment and practice.

1.     OBJECTIVE

To track utilisation of information to improve policies and practices of duty bearers.

2.     SCOPE OF WORK

·         To assess whether state actors have utilised information shared and used referral systems

·         Assessment methodology developed and applied

·         Questionnaire developed and effectively administered

·         Presentation at assessment meeting with state actors 

3.     OUTPUTS

·         A final methodology within 2 days of signing contract

·         Questionnaire methodology available before the assessment meeting 

4.     PROFILE OF CONSULTANT

·         Proven knowledge and analytical capacity in relation to women’s human rights and gender equality.

·         Specific knowledge in women’s human rights and gender equality issues in particular addressing violence against women

·         Excellent interpersonal and communication skills

Interested applicants should send their expression of interest to fidaghana@africaonline.com.gh or info@fidaghana.org by Friday 29th November 2013, the successful applicant will be notified by 9th December 2013.

 

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Gender-based Economic, Educational, and Political Disparities Hurt All Ghanaians http://www.fidaghana.org/gender-based-economic-educational-and-political-disparities-hurt-all-ghanaians/ http://www.fidaghana.org/gender-based-economic-educational-and-political-disparities-hurt-all-ghanaians/#comments Mon, 14 Oct 2013 14:54:12 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=636 Read More]]>

 

“I know that she should be in school, but it is hard.  I make small money.  I cannot afford to send all the children to school, so two of the girls, they stay here with me”

Adwoa is a 31 year-old woman from a village in the Eastern Region.  Each day, she commutes between three to four hours each way to her job as a domestic worker in Accra.  Struggling to earn enough to survive, she cannot find skilled labor because she is illiterate.  Adwoa is caring for six children, a blend of her own and her deceased siblings’ offspring.  While she knows that education is paramount to the advancement of the children’s lives, Adwoa simply cannot afford to send all of the children to school.  She is forced to decide which children will stay home.  Out of the six, two are boys and four are girls.  Adwoa decides to keep two girls out of school. 

This true story is an often repeated scenario for the most vulnerable in Ghanaian society.  Abject poverty is a generational cycle.  Adwoa cannot afford to send all of her children to school, so she sacrifices the education of two of the girls.  Because they are being denied their right to education, the two girls will likely repeat the same path that Adwoa is walking.  It is an unfortunate consequence of the lack of opportunities for many women in Ghana and the world at large, and steps must be made to break the bonds of poverty that hold back women and girls.

The key to a nation’s economic growth and success is an independent, well educated, and financially stable populace.  This includes both men and women.  Ghana has made many strides overcoming the structural inequalities that keep women at a disadvantage to men.  However, the work is not done.  Economic disparities based on sex and gender must be addressed to ensure the financial growth and stability of this country.  By focusing on equal access to education, economic independence, and ending the deprivation of property rights, society will make even greater progress in bringing access to justice and resources to all.  If equal opportunity is given to all people, this country will undoubtedly benefit economically and socially from a better educated and productive society.

Discussion

All echelons of society are affected by the gender economic disparity.  Education is skewed in favor of the boy child.  When families make the hard decision to sacrifice a child’s education, the girl child usually suffers. Consequently, Ghanaian men have a higher literacy rate and complete more years of education than women.  In 2010, 78.3% of men were able to read and write in Ghana; the literacy rate for women stood at only 65.3%.[1]  Instead of attending school, the girl child is sent to sell, perform domestic work, care for other family members, or do other menial jobs to help support the family.  While this may help the family’s current situation, the long-term effects for the girl child will continue to harm her for the rest of her life.  Education is the key to success, and taking a child out of school relegates her to a lower position in society.  Advancement is extremely hard when education is stripped away at a young age.  Like Adwoa, many women are stuck in low paying jobs because that is all that is available to them with the limited skills that they have.  Many opportunities are closed to uneducated women because they do not have the education and skills necessary to achieve security and independence.  This stunts personal economic growth and keeps women performing menial labor and relying on the financial assistance of spouses or male relatives. 

Moreover, these economic disparities impact women socially and politically.  Because of these barriers, many women do not have economic independence in their personal lives.  These factors put women in a more vulnerable state and at a disadvantage in their households and communities at large.  Economic dependence on others impedes effective negotiation in the house and opens the door to abuse.  Women in this situation largely suffer in silence because they do not have the means to leave and take care of themselves or their children. Often, these women do not have effective advocates that fully address their specific needs on a larger political level, so the cycle of deprivation and abuse continues.  Political efficacy is tied to finances and education.  By keeping women in a lower position in society, their effect in government suffers.  This keeps this cankerous cycle alive because women cannot demand the government tools and resources needed to alleviate the societal burdens keeping them in economic bondage.

While continuing financial dependence on men is the most common form of economic oppression, the deprivation of property rights is another prevalent problem that keeps women at a great economic disadvantage in this society.  Under customary law, when a man dies intestate (without a will), women are largely bypassed in the distribution of property.  FIDA-Ghana continues to hear many complaints of widows and children being sacked from their matrimonial homes by the deceased’s family.  This problem, coupled with the fact that men largely remain the breadwinners of the family, put the deceased’s widow and children in a perilous situation because they now are deprived of their rightful home, property, and money.  Without stability, these families are subject to further rights abuses and may be forced into unfavorable situations to earn money, thus amplifying their vulnerability.

There are laws and systems in place to counter these rights abuses.  PNDC Law 111 (1985), the law regarding intestate succession, has the potential to serve as an effective tool to combat the suppression of women’s property rights.  Under this statute, widows and children are required to take the majority of property, including the matrimonial home and many chattels that are inside, such as refrigerators, generators, and the like.  When there is a conflict between customary law and statutory law, PNDC Law 111 supersedes customary laws.  This law is meant to give a deceased’s nuclear family security.  Education and implementation of the law however, has been lacking.  Awareness of the law is still quite low; many people continue to follow customary laws when distributing property.  FIDA-Ghana and other non-governmental organisations are working to educate Ghanaian citizens on the importance of the law and equal treatment, but more work and resources are needed to reach the society at large.

Recommendations

 Ghana must empower women and girls to take control of their lives and destinies.  This must be achieved on both a personal and aggregate level.  As a society, we must call on government and leaders to explore options to alleviate the structural inequalities that force poor families to sacrifice the education of their children.  Access to education is essential to the growth and success of this country.  Citizens must hold the government accountable and ensure that every child can attend school, regardless of the family situation.  If this society can achieve this, both girls and boys will have equal footing on the road to success.  This country needs the most talented individuals to pave the way for a brighter future; the girl child is more than capable of being a part of that group.  Ghana must foster an amenable environment to give her an equal opportunity to excel.  We must teach her that she does not need to leave school to work or depend on anyone else for support.  She is a valuable member of Ghanaian society, and she can achieve anything that she desires if she is given the resources necessary to grow and succeed.

Non-government organisations are working tirelessly to educate women about the importance of economic independence.  This must be continued and strengthened.  A woman should be able to depend on herself in case something goes awry.  Her children must be able to turn to her for support and care when no one else can help.  Economic independence is integral to the liberation of women in abusive households, as the economic tie that holds them back will be broken.  By expanding resources to help women learn trades, establish businesses, and maintain suitable work, our society will achieve both economic and  social goals; more people will have productive jobs in our society, which increases aggregate economic growth, and women will have the means to care for themselves, giving them a better position in their homes and communities.    

Property rights are an integral part of economic stability and independence.  FIDA-Ghana continues to work in collaboration with other service providers to educate people about PNDC Law 111.  FIDA-Ghana has worked with Legal Aid, CHRAJ, DOVVSU, and many other providers to sensitise people on issues regarding property deprivation.  Continuing these collaborations will help to reach even more people and to educate the most vulnerable members of society.  Additionally, this is a call and challenge to the government to actively publicize and educate the public about the benefits of the law, as well as offer support in the implementation and continuation of similar projects around the country.

Conclusion

There is greater work that must be done to ensure equal access to education, economic independence, and access to justice regarding property rights for women.  The government, NGOs, and service providers must collaborate effectively and efficiently to achieve all of these goals.  Though great progress has definitely been made, many of the most vulnerable members of society are still suffering.  We as a society cannot afford to be complacent regarding their situation.  This society must come together to tackle the obstacles and structural inequalities that continue to keep women and girls in a disadvantageous position in society.  FIDA-Ghana calls on all members of society to demand change, accountability, and justice.  Our women and girls need not have the same perilous predicament as Adwoa and her children.  By coming together and making effective demands and changes, Ghana can achieve economic, educational, and political liberation for all of its citizens.  The change must start now.  This article is meant to create awareness, and FIDA-Ghana hopes that more citizens will join in the call to action to fight this blight on Ghanaian society.

 

Response to Article should be sent to fidaghana@africaonline.com.gh,  OR info@fidaghana.org


[1] CIA World Factbook – Ghana.  Updated 4 October 2013.

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THE RAGING WAR OF SPOUSAL VIOLENCE http://www.fidaghana.org/the-raging-war-of-spousal-violence/ http://www.fidaghana.org/the-raging-war-of-spousal-violence/#comments Thu, 10 Oct 2013 10:58:20 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=634 Read More]]>

 

With the passage of the Domestic Violence Law in 2007, Ghana took a giant step to address in a more systematic manner issues of violence and especially, violence against women.

 However, despite the strides made to improve the legal and institutional environment that protect women against violence, there continue to be reports of spousal violence and abuse. 

The current trends and recent reported cases of death resulting from such spousal attacks are alarming, and are of great concern to the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA-Ghana).

Recent reported incidences of spousal killings in Ghana are all indicative of the fact that a lot more needs to be done by all stakeholders to avert this menace. It is unclear what triggers such actions from spouses but reasons have been attributed to among others, suspicion of a spouse having an affair to the threat of divorce.

In recent years, marital issues have persistently ranged as the highest of all the cases presented to the Legal Aid Services Center of the International Federation of Women Lawyers, (FIDA-Ghana).  Between 2010 and 2012, the center recorded 347 cases on various issues around marriage. Out of the number 146 cases were related specifically to abuse.

 Statistics report from the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit of the Ghana Police indicated that 15,495 cases of battered women were reported in 2011 as against 2,474 reported incidents of battered men.

  The World Health Organization (WHO) defines spousal abuse as occurring when a partner or ex-partner attempts to physically or psychologically dominate another. It encompasses a set of symptoms that involve both physical and or emotional abuse. 

Spousal abuse is very common in the world. In both developed and developing countries the issues around it are still being grappled with as the consequences have far reaching effects on societies.

 

Research conducted into causes of domestic violence the world over has revealed that there is no single factor accounting for the violence perpetrated against spouses, particularly women. It has also been realised that there are inter-related factors which could explain such occurrences.

 It could range from institutionalised social and cultural factors that have kept the women particularly vulnerable to violence directed at them and these stem from the belief that historically, there is an unequal power relation between men and women. For example many institutionalised structures and traditional practices against women, especially the social contracts around marriage which reinforce male control are explicitly violent and contribute to the general socio-cultural construction of womanhood.  

 

Other factors contributing to this could include socio- economic forces, fear of control over female sexuality, belief in the inherent superiority of males and legislations and cultural sanctions that have traditionally denied women and children an independent legal and social status.

 

 With regard to women, lack of economic resources underpins their vulnerability to violence and their difficulty in extricating themselves from a violent relationship.

Traditionally women can seek help when abused by their spouses at three levels: family or household level, clan level and the level of the chief or head of community.  At these three levels, the procedure used in administering justice and empanelling of the decision makers do not favor women as they usually do not appear to be fair. 

Normally a panel of men is constituted to delve into the purported abuse who will not adjudicate the alleged abuse with a gender lens, but champion similar views, thinking and perceptions that considers women as ‘outsiders’ and men as their brothers to be supported. These views are often parallel to the same opinions held by the woman’s husband. 

 

First a woman will make the complaint to the head of household who then tries to settle the matter. If he is not successful he will invite other adult males in that household to assist him.   In many instances instead of dwelling on the substance of the case e.g. maintenance, seizure of property assault, etc, the panel is keen on what the women did to provoke the man’s reaction.

Unbelievably, the woman ends up apologising for wrong behavior which can best be described as a forced confession, because she is often in disagreement with the verdict, and  the man leaves feeling even more justified with his actions.

 

The problem is also compounded by the fact that women do not also have easy access to the formal justice systems, as a result of the fact that they are expensive, bogged down with bureaucracy and are few when viewed in proportion to our population. They also are inadequately resourced and therefore lack the needed logistics and skilled personnel to specifically address the issues facing women who suffer from gender based-violence. The women also are ignorant of their options due to lack of education.  As a result of these, a growing phenomenon of a culture of silence has evolved which leaves women more vulnerable to the perpetrators of the abuses who go unpunished.

It is against this backdrop that FIDA-Ghana with support from the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) is undertaking a three year project targeting three districts in the Greater Accra region to reach a total number of 7,610 female and male beneficiaries. The districts are Ga-mashie, Weija, and Amasaman. 

These three districts have been chosen because, FIDA-Ghana’s Legal Aid reports over the past five years show that women in the three targeted communities are regularly denied their property rights and child support for their children.

Additionally, women in these areas are subjected to violence at the hands of their partners and further aggravating this situation is the fact that 74 per cent of the women were ignorant about their property and human rights.

Experiences recounted during community outreach programs by FIDA-Ghana revealed that people in these communities discouraged women from reporting abusive spousal behavior to any institution for redress, as they are perceived to be purposely disgracing their men.

Women in the three project area would therefore be empowered to report cases of abuse in the face of rights violations and would be educated on the laws to be able to represent themselves at the family courts.

 

Secondly, state actors in these districts would be empowered to improve their practices to promptly respond to rights violations reported by these women.

Also a supportive and knowledgeable team of community paralegals would be established to assist the women to report cases and access justice throughout the implementation and after the end of the project.

 

Finally, an improved civil and customary environment would be created where women’s rights would be promoted and protected and they would be supported to report rights abuses.

 Cultural and traditional practices show clear indications of compromises on the rights of women and girls who from birth to death are subjected to various forms of abuses. This has caused women to be reluctant to report incidents of abuse due to ingrained socio-cultural attitudes.

The right to dignity like the equality principle is an international customary law norm which states cannot derogate from. As a signatory to many international agreements including the Convention on the Elimination if All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). 

Ghana like most countries has over the years paid attention to violence that occur in the public sphere. Much attention has not been given to a woman’s dignity in the privacy of her home. This is because in spite of legislation, society still perceive domestic violence as a private matter and this fits well into the private family structure where patriarchy and culture violates women’s dignity causing  them to feel degraded and less human. 

Even though private, the home was designed to be a place of solace and to offer protection from outside threat, so it is more tragic when the threat occurs from within and without.

 

There is now a growing recognition that countries cannot reach their full potential as long as women’s potential to participate fully in their society is denied. Data on the social, economic and health costs of violence is evidence of the fact that violence against women undermines progress towards human and economic development. It pervades the very fabric of society and threatens its welfare and continued survival.

FIDA-Ghana is therefore advocating that in the midst of scarce resources, a country’s priorities should gravitate towards those components that when tackled can bring about significant progress. For example, making strenuous effort to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) 3 on Gender equality and empowerment of women will be a right based approach ( bottom to top) that will tackle the root causes of violence against women and pave the way for the achievement of  the other MDG’s.

 It is encouraging to note that in Ghana, there are legislations, legal arrangements, mechanisms, institutions both governmental and non-governmental to address issues on violence against women. Despite these, we continue to experience persistent occurrence of violence, because as a nation we all seem to lack the political, social and economic will to actualise what has been provided for by law and society.

It is therefore the recommendation of FIDA-Ghana that institutions that address issues of violence need to work in a coordinated manner, providing both psychosocial support and legal assistance as well as resourced financially. 

It is also important that staff have the requisite competencies to deal with both survivors of violence and perpetrators. As a society we must not wait for such dastardly acts to occur for us to condemn it, we must all get involved in finding solutions. The pervasive nature of violence necessitates a holistic and multi-sectoral approach in order to make more progress:

Private and public partnerships should be encouraged to ensure a regular flow of ideas, strategies and funds for organisations like the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVSU) of the police service to enable them effectively perform their roles.

The work of Non Governmental Organisations (NGO) such as FIDA-Ghana has been phenomenal in Ghana. Whilst funding to help NGO’s address the issues keeps dwindling the work still remains daunting. Nevertheless, NGO’s must continue to play the catalystic role in generating public interest and debate on issues surrounding violence against women. Academic research into the social, economic and health costs must be conducted and used to design education and sensitization programs to remove the myth and ignorance around violence against women.

Government needs to always be mindful of its responsibilities under International and National laws and proactively intensify its efforts to eliminate violence against women by addressing structural and institutional barriers that perpetuate violence. When there is political will, women’s issues will be prioritized and women will receive prompt attention from state actors who are obliged to provide services to survivors of violence, which they are entitled to.

Traditional and Religious institutions must work to ensure that social and cultural patterns that promoted violence against women gradually become a thing of the past.

In all, one will say that even though Ghana has several laws that guarantee women’s rights, in practice violations of these rights continue to occur due to lack of implementation of these laws.  Institutions that address gender-based violence in Ghana need to be strengthened and well resourced to meet the day to day demands of abused women.

Success stories of beneficiaries of FIDA-Ghana’s Legal Aid services show improvements in household decision-making which positively impacts families. Female beneficiaries are empowered to openly challenge dehumanizing customary practices making them critical agents of change. They are transformed into role models for other women, regardless of age. 

FIDA-Ghana therefore believes that its Access to Justice Program must be strengthened over the next three years in order to respond more effectively to the legal needs of women, children and the marginalised. 

 

mailto:fidaghana@africaonline.com.ghmailto:info@fidaghana.com

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FIDA GHANA 3RD ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2013 HAS BEEN CANCELLED http://www.fidaghana.org/fida-ghana-3rd-annual-conference-2013-has-been-cancelled/ http://www.fidaghana.org/fida-ghana-3rd-annual-conference-2013-has-been-cancelled/#comments Wed, 04 Sep 2013 12:53:45 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=630 Read More]]>

 

FIDA-Ghana regrettably announces that this year’s

Conference for Female Lawyers and Executives has

been called off due to unanticipated

 

Circumstances.  Any inconvenience caused is deeply

 

regretted. 

Hope to see you in October 2014. 

Thank You

 

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REQUEST FOR CONSULTANCY SERVICES TO PROMOTE AND PROTECT THE LEGAL RIGHTS OF WOMEN AFFECTED BY HIV/AIDS http://www.fidaghana.org/request-for-consultancy-services-to-promote-and-protect-the-legal-rights-of-women-affected-by-hivaids/ http://www.fidaghana.org/request-for-consultancy-services-to-promote-and-protect-the-legal-rights-of-women-affected-by-hivaids/#comments Thu, 13 Jun 2013 11:36:36 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=622 Read More]]>

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR FINAL PROJECT EVALUATION:

“Promoting the Rights of Women Affected and Infected by HIV and AIDS”

1. The Implementing Organisations

(a) FIDA-Ghana has been providing legal services to women in Ghana for over 30 years. In 1974 FIDA established the first free Legal Aid Service in the country, extending vital legal services to women whose recognition in Ghanaian law would otherwise be severely restricted. Today, FIDA’s community-based volunteers (paralegals) continue to ensure that rural women have access to services such as counselling, mediation and representation in court. FIDA Ghana’s research and advocacy have also been highly influential, particularly on HIV and AIDS and violence against women. Womankind and FIDA collaborate on improving women’s access to justice.

(b) Womankind Worldwide (WK) is an international women’s rights charity working to help women transform their lives in Africa, Asia and Latin America. WK partner’s with women’s rights organisations who are tackling the day to day issues that affect women’s lives and who are creating impact.

2. Background

In Ghana women are disproportionately affected by HIV and AIDS, and their needs in relation to HIV prevention are not sufficiently met at the national or local level. Although Ghana is a signatory of a number of regional and international treaties, conventions, and declarations on HIV and AIDS, and has a national HIV and AIDS policy, the links between VAW, HIV and AIDS are not being made by government programmes and policies; Particularly with regard to the patriarchal attitudes that fuel the HIV epidemic and increase women’s susceptibility to infection. FIDA-Ghana carried out a research highlighting the legal challenges facing women living with HIV and AIDS. FIDA’s experience of the women they work with, as well as respondents from the research, articulated that they were not able to exercise their claim making capacities in relation to challenges that confronts them regarding property and maintenance of themselves and their children. The research evidenced the impact of stigmatisation of People Living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHAs) to the extent that many women and girls neglected their reproductive health needs, failed to access information on HIV and AIDS and postponed their treatment for fear of abuse and rejection by their families and communities. Some positive women working as food vendors lost clients and their business when their HIV status became public. Culturally acceptable patriarchal practices such as permitting men to have multiple partners, sex on demand, polygamy and widow inheritance as well as often subjecting women to physical violence, all contribute to increasing girls and women’s susceptibility to HIV infection and accelerating the spread of HIV. A large number of women infected and affected with HIV and AIDS have no access to justice Those that can access their rights to justice are often reluctant to do so as the environment is not conducive for mediating or talking about sensitive issues. Women who persevere end up either being subjected to this inhospitable situation or are referred to other state institutions that also may not have the capacity to effectively respond to their needs. Faced with these frustrations, women who make attempts to seek justice give up and undergo secondary trauma. The project under review sought to address these issues by using a number of approaches, particularly the training of community men and women to become paralegals to assist women affected by or infected with HIV and/or AIDS to claim their rights.

3. Project Aim

The aim of the 3 year project was to contribute to the effective promotion and protection of the human rights of women infected or affected by HIV or AIDS, in 3 regions of Ghana –Volta, Eastern and Brong Ahafo .

Research conducted by the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), on the impact that HIV and AIDS has on women accessing their legal rights, highlighted serious gaps that need to be addressed in order to support women affected or infected by HIV or AIDS, and to help prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS.

In particular it showed that women are prevented from accessing appropriate support and services due: • to stigma and discrimination,

• fear of disclosure of their status,

• lack of information about available appropriate services

• inadequate resources

• negative socio–cultural practices inherent in customary law

This project was conceptualised from these findings and from the lessons learnt from a one year pilot project to support women affected and infected by HIV and AIDS. This second phase was to build on this and was intended to sustain work in existing communities and consolidate gains, as well as expand to adjoining districts and communities. To improve the rights of women infected or affected by HIV or AIDS the following strategies were implemented:

a) training paralegals in 3 communities to provide information and support to women infected or affected by HIV or AIDS on their legal rights;

b) raising awareness with the general public on these legal rights through outreach work, radio programmes and information dissemination; and

c) advocacy work with legal institutions and government agencies to improve existing laws, programmes and policies to protect women living with HIV or AIDS.

4. Specific Project Objectives:

Outcome 1:  Improved health and well-being of women infected or affected by HIV and AIDS through access to justice and realisation of their rights.

Outcome 2:  Improved environment (civil and customary) in which women affected or infected by HIV and AIDS can exercise their rights and claim their entitlements.

Outcome 3: Improved policies and practices of public officials, traditional leaders and the State to address women affected or infected by HIV and AIDS’s needs and rights.

5. Scope of work

Purpose and Objectives of Evaluation:

• To provide information and evidence on progress made towards achieving aims, and outcomes as set out in the in the project proposal.

• To provide a clear overview of the effectiveness, efficiency, sustainability, of the project and the impact of the work.

6. The final evaluation is expected to cover the following aspects:

i. Quality and Relevance of Design

Assess whether the project design was appropriate and relevant. This assessment shall take into consideration that the project context, threats, and opportunities may have changed during the course of the project. Assess what adjustments have been made and what other adjustments may be necessary. In particular:

• To what extent does the project respond to priority issues? • What is the value of the intervention in relation to national priorities, etc.?

• Do stakeholders care about the project and believe it brings change?

ii. Effectiveness

Assess the major achievements of the project in relation to its stated aim and intended outcomes.

• Assess what has been achieved by the project thus far, including qualitative evidence (e.g. opinions on the project’s effectiveness based on impressions and interviews with target groups, partners, government, etc.) • How many women and girls has the project benefitted (direct and indirect) and how?

• Describe any major weaknesses and shortcomings of the project, explaining why they have occurred and what can be done to ensure they are avoided in the future.

iii. Efficiency of Implementation

Assess to what extent resources are being used economically to deliver the project are plans being used, implemented and adapted as necessary?

For example:

• Is the overall project action plan used and up to date and the activities in the work plan being delivered?

• Is financial spending in line with plans?

• Is monitoring data being collected as planned, stored, and used to inform future plans? Assess other programme management factors important for delivery, including:

• Capacity gaps (e.g. in the project team, other internal functions such as HR or Finance, or external organizations as appropriate).

• Working relationships with partners and stakeholders.

iv. Impact

• The evaluator will assess to what extent the project has achieved its goals and made a difference and how the targeted population is being affected.

• The evaluator will describe the visible and potential changes to the project plan, taking into account unforeseen impacts, both positive and negative.

v. Potential for sustainability, replication and magnification

The evaluator is expected to assess the key factors affecting sustainability of the project, such as:

• What is the social and political environment/ acceptance of the project?

• Is/will the project contribute to lasting benefits?

• How viable are the role and sustainability of the paralegals in the long term?

• Is there evidence of organisations/partners/communities that have copied, upscaled or replicated project activities beyond the immediate project area? Is such replication or magnification likely?

vi. Partnership: Details of the partnership between the 2 partners

• How effective is the partnership? In what way has the relationship contributed to the achievement of the project outcomes so far?

• In what way has the WK organisationally and programmatically supported FIDA? Is the support relevant? • What has worked well and what has not?

• What aspects of the partnership can be strengthened or amended for the remainder of the project grant?

vii. Provide lessons learnt and recommendations on ways forward

• Share key lessons learned

• Make recommendations on the key strategic options for the future of the project (i.e. exit strategy, scale down, replication, scale-up, continuation, major modifications to strategy).

7. Data Collection Method

The consultant will employ both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. They will use variety of data collection tools including, but not limited to participatory methodologies, interviews, focus groups, and field observations among others. And a collection of tools they perceive as being appropriate for capturing and analyzing the information required. Where appropriate, the consultant will also suggest an appropriate sample, which will be both cost effective and provide significant results.

8. Profile of the Consultant

We are seeking an evaluator who can provide evidence of some or all of the following skills and expertise:Proven knowledge and analytical capacity in relation to women’s human rights and gender equality as well as international development issues.

  • Specific knowledge of women’s human rights and gender equality issues in particular addressing violence against women
  • Demonstrable experience in research and data collection (both quantative and qualitative).
  • Ability and/or experience to analyse lobbying activities and work towards women’s empowerment and gender equality.
  • Excellent inter-personal and communication skills.
  • Experience of working with women and grassroots organisations
  • Experience in evaluating projects in rural and urban areas, related to the field of lobbying and gender empowerment
  • Experience of participatory research methodologies
  • Demonstrated knowledge of gender and women’s rights issues in Ghana and the impact of the current political and socio-economic situation on these
  • Ability to listen and communicate well
  • Capacity to gather information

9. Evaluation Outputs and Deliverables

The Evaluation Team Leader is expected to provide the following deliverables:

• Methodology, Work plan and budget • List of people and institutions consulted/interviewed.

• A comprehensive Evaluation Report with practical recommendations;

• Presentation at learning & sharing meeting with staff of Ghana Aids Commission & gender groups working with Women Living with HIV and Aids.

10. Content of Report

The evaluator is expected to prepare the final evaluation report, which should include the following:

1 Introduction

  • Title of project
  • Aim of the project
  • Date of evaluation and names of evaluator(s)
  • Methodology of the evaluation

2 Executive summary

  • Brief description of project, including objectives and strategies proposed to achieve them.
  • Background to the evaluation (who carried it out and summary of Terms of Reference)
  • Conclusions and general evaluation (highly successful/ successful / partially successful / unsuccessful)
  • Summary of recommendations

3 Report (preferably no more than 30 pages) – addressing all the points included in point 6 of the Terms of Reference

4 Appendices

  • Terms of Reference
  • Comments and observations for partner not contained in main body of report.
  • List of interviewees
  • List of documents consulted
  • Statistics and case studies
  • Formats used (questionnaires etc.)

11. Timeline for implementing the evaluation assignment

The review will be carried out for twenty person days from July to August 2013. Exact dates will be agreed with the consultant before commencement of the assignment. The final review report should be submitted by the third week of August 2013.

12. Application Process

• Interested applicants should send their expression of interest to fidaghana@africaonline.com.gh and info@fidaghana.org by Friday 21st June 2013.

• The successful applicant will be notified by 5th July 2013

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3RD ANNUAL CONFERENCE FOR FEMALE LAWYERS AND FEMALE EXECUTIVES http://www.fidaghana.org/3rd-annual-conference-for-female-lawyers-and-female-executives/ http://www.fidaghana.org/3rd-annual-conference-for-female-lawyers-and-female-executives/#comments Wed, 05 Jun 2013 12:06:17 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=619 Read More]]> 3rd Annual Conference for Female Lawyers and

Female Executives.

 

THEME: “WOMEN VOICES BEYOND THE WORKSPACE”

 

 

 

This year’s conference focuses on elimination and prevention of all

forms of violence against women and girls.

 

 

 

At the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW)

which took place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York

early this year elimination and prevention of violence and closing the

gender gap was clear-cut.

 

 

 

Be part of the prospect of seeing our society free from any form of

violence  !!!!!!  

 

 

 

Invite a friend

 

 

 

Register

 

2nd July – 30th September 2013

 

To attend the conference you must be a

female lawyer, female executive or female

law student.

 

Regular fee: GH ¢ 30.00 from 2nd July – 30th

August 2013

 

Late fee: GH ¢ 50.00 from 2nd September – 7th

October 2013

 

Onsite fee: GH ¢ 50.00

 

 

For enquiries call 0302-542593/020-7685685 to talk to

Noelle or Benedicta, you may also email us to

noelle@fidaghana.org or info@fidaghana.org  please.

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FIDA-GHANA HAS RELOCATED TO THE MADINA ESTATE ROAD http://www.fidaghana.org/605/ http://www.fidaghana.org/605/#comments Tue, 04 Jun 2013 11:18:02 +0000 http://www.fidaghana.org/?p=605 Read More]]> FIDA-GHANA HAS RELOCATED TO A NEW OFFICE

ON THE MADINA ESTATE ROAD

FIDA-Ghana is pleased to inform the general public  that the office has relocated from the 4th Crescent to its new premises on the Madina Estates Road close to the Goil Filling Station after the Action Progressive School.

We kindly request that  all correspondencesare forwarded to our new office or alternatively via e-mail.  We can also be contacted on these numbers: 020-7685-685 and 0302 542-593.

 Please locate us on the Madina Estates Road after the Action Progressive School, turn right after the Goil Filling Station and FIDA is adjacent to Agartha’s restaurant.

Thank You

 

 

 

 

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