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International Justice
Men's Forum - Women's Access to justice project
Justice without Frontiers organized a three days workshop for the preparation of "Men's Forum” for the support and advocacy for women's access to justice project, from 26th till 28th of February 2013 at the Padova Hotel - Sin Fil.
The workshop gathered a number of religious leaders, ecclesiastical lawyer, representatives from some political parties, journalists and civil society activists whom they assured since the beginning of the training on the importance of bringing out a plan of action outside the framework of WAJ project’s plan. Thus; this plan must be applicable and feasible for implementation from the position of each individual of the participants; in order to support women and advocate for access to justice specifically in personal status laws.
Ms. Myriam Haddad, Project Officer for WAJ project presented a definition about JWF and its work on spreading the culture of human rights and providing legal support for women and children in particular what is related to personal status laws in “Women access to justice"; expressing that: “WAJ project aims to support vulnerable women, who are victims of exploitation or women in need of legal assistance in the Ecclesiastic Courts”, as she noted.
Mr. Riad Issa, the Trainer began the first day of the training by explaining the communication skills and acceptance of the other, where he was paving to focus on the importance of promoting the concept of citizenship between rights and duties and the role of women between citizenship and civil society. Besides, Mr. Issa elaborated the model of justice and team work in an advocacy plan specifically in the issue of equality between women and men in the personal status laws.
Mr. Issa initiated day two by linking the Convention of CEDAW with the points that spot on women's rights in personal status laws in Lebanon. The second day focused on explaining the concept of advocacy campaigns and advocacy as part of work in groups the main obstacles we might face. Mr. Issa also stressed on how to bring “strategic planning” in order to create targeted changes with authority members.
 It is worth mentioning, that the work was characterized by collective interaction among participants who had reached for the conclusion of the second day by brainstorming a number of proposals and initiatives that were gathered to be unified in objective targets in their action plan.
The third day of the preparatory workshop for "Men’s forum to support women in order to access to justice," allowed the participants to collect the most important ideas and suggestions that can be prepared and implemented within the future action plan. Everyone presented several initiatives and opportunities that can be used to move towards spreading awareness about the law and provide support for women to access to justice.
Moreover, the participants were motivated to expand the Forum and invite new members to join in supporting this process and hinted whether there’s a possibility to involve the feminine element in the program after some time. Thus; the “men’s forum” diverts to become "a forum for supporting women to access to justice," which includes both men and women.
The participants developed a practical program and agreed to unite efforts in meaningful activities. They managed to renew their second meeting in the middle of May 2013 to launch their agenda.
Lady Fiona and Ms Blackwood visit to JWF
Justice Without Frontiers welcomed today Lady Fiona Hodgson CBE - honorary Vice President of the Conservative Women's Organization, and UK Member of Parliament Nicola Blackwood, whom they have visited JWF office with the Head of UK Government Relations (Oxfam) Ms. Katy Wright and Programme Manager Middle East Regional Gender Equality Programme (Oxfam) Mrs. Sarah Barakat. Me. Brigitte Chelebian, Director of JWF introduced Women Access to Justice (WAJ) Project and how we are following the beneficiaries and activities to implement the project. The visitors had the chance to meet two paralegals from WAJ Project Marie Feghali and Carmel Mhana. Also the had the opportunity to meet and listen to two beneficiaries Hasna F. and Marie Kh. speaking about their fight to access to justice and get their rights.
Raising Awareness for 183 woman about Personal status law
In the framework of raising awareness and training women to know about their Personal Status Law as a part of "Women's Access to Justice" Project (WAJ), Justice Without Frontiers held a series of awareness raising sessions on Catholic Personal Status Law for One hundred and eighty three woman in collaboration with the Social Development Centers( Bekfaya – Byblos and Ain Remeneh), Youth Cultural Center – Zouk Mkayel, House of Mayriam and Marta – Ajaltoun, Karakozian Association – Bourj Hammoud, Mar Elias Church – Jisr ElBasha and the School of “Pardis D’Enfants” – Jounieh during February and March 2013.
 
Ms. Myriam Haddad, Project Officer for WAJ project presented a definition about JWF and its work on spreading the culture of human rights and providing legal support for women and childrenin particular what is related to personal status laws in“Women access to justice". She indicated that the aim of the project to support vulnerablewomen, who are victims of exploitation or women in need of legal assistancein the Ecclesiastic Courts.
 
 In the same context, the Ecclesiasticallawyer Mario Mouawad provided a detailed explanation of the most prominent laws related to issues of marriage, divorce, custody, alimonyand other details. The meetings included series of discussions and interventions by women whom they shared their opinions. Also, Me. Mouawad answered the questions from participants and gave direct legal consultations.
 
On the same context, Mrs. Marie Feghali and Mrs. Carmel Mhana, Two Paralegals in WAJ project held part of the sessions, where they gave a brief definition about the Catholic Personal Status Law as it is based on the Legal Guideline "Women in the personal status law of the Catholic communities" launched by the organization, in reference to the legal steps and procedures followed in the religious courts.

Women attending the awareness session expressed their interest and how they can benefit from that information and they expressed their desire to mainstream the knowledge to their friends.
Moreover, the participants showed the importance of giving similar sessions to the youth of the age of marriage before they get engaged. Some chose to come to the organization's office to view their legal problems.
 
Awareness raising session with Religious Leaders at Byblos Diocese
 
Justice Without Frontiers met around seventy members from religious judges and priests during their monthly gathering at Byblos Diocese Saturday 29th of December 2012 at 10:45 a.m.
Ms.  Myriam Haddad, Project officer introduced them to "Women Access to Justice" Project and discussed the terms and means of how they can integrate and connect with the project from their positions as Catholic Religious Leaders related to Byblos Archbishopric, considering them as stakeholders from the community leaders.
Bishop Michel Aoun, assured on the importance to cooperate and guide vulnerable women to get the free legal support from JWF lawyers. The members showed their interest and the importance to highlight such subject, where it was significant that some members already experienced JWF’s work on field and already referred vulnerable women to benefit from WAJ legal services. Some of the members were motivated to collaborate for future planning how to spread out the knowledge about PSL and women rights in the parish sectors related to the Diocese.
Meeting Sarba Diocese Committee
Justice Without Frontiers held a raising awareness session with Sarba Diocese Committee members about Catholic Personal Status Law as a part of increasing awareness about women's legal rights in "Women Access to Justice" Project, Thursday 27th December 2012 at 7:00 p.m. in Sarba Archbishopric.
Ms.  Myriam Haddad, Project officer for WAJ project spoke about the difference parts of the personal Status Law that couples must know about marriage and discussed the project’s vision and practice on ground.
The members showed their interest and importance to highlight to such subject. They were motivated to collaborate for future planning how to spread out the knowledge about Personal Status Laws and women rights in the parish sectors related to the Diocese.
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