Objectives and Activities of the LRF in Zambia
The objectives for which the Foundation was set up are:
- i. To define, promote and create a human rights culture in Zambia
- ii. To promote and advocate for the observance and respect for human rights as provided for in the constitution of the Republic of Zambia and international human rights instruments to which Zambia is a signatory and where it is not to campaign for ratification of such instruments
- iii. To campaign for the protection of human rights and other related rights necessary for the sustenance and existence of a civil society.
- iv. To provide legal aid services in cases involving violation of human rights and in any other cases that are in the public interest and initiate or campaign for the initiation of such legal proceedings involving violations of human rights and any other cases which are in the public interest
- v. To carry out educational programmes and other activities aimed at promoting people's awareness of their fundamental human rights and any other rights necessary to sustain a civil society
- vi. To promote the development of human rights and development of the law generally in Zambia
The Foundation provides Legal Aid and Legal Advice, initiating litigation and defending those who on account of lack of resources are unable to retain the services of a professional lawyer. Cases that are undertaken are those that have human rights connotations and those that are generally in the public interest and can effectively contribute towards civic awareness.
The Foundation conducts paralegal training for people who have an interest in law. The training is aimed at equipping the citizens with legal knowledge. This measure in itself is a means of bridging the gap between the people and the lawyer.
The Foundation holds meetings aimed at discussing various issues to which it is committed. Scholars, politicians and other professionals are invited to present papers at such gatherings. The objective is to encourage a scholarly debate on human rights and law development in relation to the various economic, social and political forces in place in Zambia.
The Foundation also arranges for workshops designed for specific groups of people such as the police and other wings of government concerned with internal security and people at the grassroots. The objective is to promote awareness among specific groups of people with the hope that the knowledge gained will be passed on to other people.
The Foundation reaches out to the people through various publications. Brochures about the foundation's activities are available in English and other major local languages. The Foundation has established a newsletter, which addresses issues falling within the ambit of the objectives of the Foundation.
The Foundation engages in discussions on television and radio pertaining to the law such as debates on the constitution and the radio programme "You and the Law" aimed at empowering the citizens with legal knowledge.
The Foundation also networks with local organisations in the furtherance of human rights.
The Foundation has established links with the Legal Resources Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa, as well as the Legal Assistance Centres in Zimbabwe Namibia, Botswana, Zanzibar, Mozambique, Lesotho and Malawi.