details

Women Jurists for the Rights of the Woman and the Child (FJDF), North Kivu

FJDF is a registered NGO with the national government.

Location

Butembo, North Kivu province
FJDF covers the whole of North Kivu province, with particular attention to the territories of Lubero and Beni.

Sectors of Intervention

Human rights; gender and justice

History

On March 8, 1998—International Women’s Day—a group of women came up with the idea to create FJDF (Femmes juristes pour les droits de la femme et de l’enfant). At this time, DRC was on the brink of another war, which started in August 1998. Already there were numerous human rights violations in the Butembo area, and women were especially vulnerable and victimized. FJDF has emerged as one of the most important women’s groups working on human rights in eastern DRC. It has worked with numerous international funders, including the American Bar Association, Finnish Church Aid, and the World Fund for Human Rights.

Mission

Promote and protect the human rights of women and children as a way of reestablishing their dignity and respect in society

Objectives

  • Promote and protect fundamental human rights
  • Sensitize community leaders and other decision makers about the fight against sexual violence
  • Provide legal assistance to victims of human right violations
  • Work as a reference and a link for all the organizations working for the promotion of women’s rights

Populations Served

FJDF serves the North Kivu community as a whole, but with a particular focus on women and children.

Programs

  • Community sensitization: FJDF sensitizes the society about sexual violence. This activity targets different levels of people in the community about different forms of sexual violence. The organization uses various strategies, including radio programs, theatrical performances, conferences, and workshops in the fight against this societal ill.
  • Lobbying: FJDF works to sensitize the administrative, political, military, and traditional authorities to consider gender mainstreaming in their work and to take an active role in the fight against all forms of human rights violations as well as the prevention of sexual violence.
  • Legal assistance: FJDF provides legal assistance to victims of human rights violations.
  • Training: FJDF provides training to women working in collaboration with FJDF so as to strengthen their capacities in the human rights domain. The aim is to give them basic knowledge about human rights, sexual violence, and gender mainstreaming.

Governance

The supreme governing body is the general assembly, which meets every year. The general assembly sets the overall programs and goals for FJDF, and appoints the board of directors. The board meets every three months and closely monitors FJDF’s financial, administrative, and programmatic functioning. The board has a monitoring committee that meets every month, reviews FJDF’s internal operations, and conducts FJDF’s internal audit. FJDF has 14 permanent employees and several consultants who are contracted for specific duties.

FJDF has an account at BIC in Butembo. For financial, administrative, and personnel management, FJDF has:

  • A procedures manual with policies for financial management; hiring and personnel issues; and purchasing policies and procedures: NO
  • A computerized accounting system: YES
  • A clearly defined accounting process: YES
  • Clear procedures for management of payroll, petty cash, procurement, and disbursements: YES
  • Staff with the technical expertise to undertake projects: YES

Strengths

  • Very competent employees
  • Enjoys a good reputation in the community and is known for its skills in providing legal assistance to survivors of sexual violence
  • Maintains good relationships with donors and other local and international partners

Needs

  • Capacity building in finance and management
  • Institutional and financial support for program expansion
  • A stronger strategy for mass communication and visual aids for community sensitization
  • Improved documentation of the organization’s accomplishments

 

Funders and Budget

In 2010, FJDF’s budget was $79,000. For 2011, FJDF estimates its budget to be about $218,000. Funders include the American Bar Association and Finnish Church Aid.

Accomplishments

  • Prepares and produces two television programs every week
  • Has sensitized ten churches about sexual and gender-based violence and gender mainstreaming and the role of the church in enforcing human rights in the society
  • Has organized conferences and debates about human rights and sexual and gender-based violence at three universities
  • Has produced and distributed more than 1,500 leaflets and pamphlets in the community about sexual violence laws
  • Has provided legal assistance to 100 survivors of sexual violence

Organizational Vision

Work for women’s empowerment, reinforce the rights of women, and promote equal opportunities for women in the social, political, and economic spheres

Project Proposals

  • Human rights education: FJDF will organize training sessions on human rights, child protection, and responsible discipline in schools. The trainings will target 20 schools in Butembo and include school authorities, teachers, and parents. Cost: $26,368
  • Promoting women’s leadership: FJDF will organize trainings for women about leadership, their rights, and their responsibilities. It will also work with local authorities and community leaders to fight against social inequality. Cost: $35,300

Contact

Abidana Kathi, coordinator, +243.998.743.168, abidanakathi@yahoo.fr, femmesjuristesbutembo@yahoo.fr, and Catherine Katungu Furaha, president, +243.997.760.899

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