Our founder & Executive Director, Christina Storm, retired from LWOB after twenty years at the helm. After an extensive search for Christina’s successor, the LWOB Board of Directors found an excellent candidate to succeed Christina. We anticipate making an announcement about our new Executive Director this spring.
Lawyers Without Borders has been selected to the short list of the annual Duty of Care Awards. The organization has received this recognition for being, “an exceptional example of how organizations are engaging with themes such as sustainability, business continuity, and resilience.” The winners of the award will be announced live at the Duty of Care Awards and Summit on October 17, 2019, in Shanghai, China.
In summer 2015 two senior lawyers joined by two undergraduate fellows conducted a week-long visit to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. The trip was designed to meet and introduce key stakeholders to LWOB’s human trafficking programming and offerings and to continue to distribute LWOB’s “Find Me” educational board game and supporting trainer materials to NGO’s there as part of LWOB’s grant to produce and distribute the game globally.
Following that visit, in November 2015, a senior LWOB team hosted a stakeholder meeting and symposium in Dar which brought together the different sectors grappling with the country’s unique regional human trafficking issues. One of the key findings from the meeting was the key need for collaboration among the different sectors as well as the need to disseminate information throughout the country to generate awareness in communities about the problem and how to be part of a new initiative to improve law enforcement’s capacity to address it.
Special thanks to the University of Connecticut which generously funded the two students who joined the August assessment team and who spent several weeks at LWOB’s headquarters preparing the documentation and materials in preparation for the visit. Plans are underway to build on the progress made in the November meetings. LWOB’s senior team included LWOB’s senior counsel, a partner from Jones Day and a senior prosecutor volunteer.
LWOB is an approved charity in the Amazon Smile program. Designating LWOB as your charity in your Amazon purchase account will dedicate a small percentage of your dollars spent to LWOB. Believe it or not, LWOB can realize up one to two hundred dollars per month with only a dozen purchases. To get a sense of how your dollars spent can impact our constituent audience–$57 will provide an NGO with an educational game to teach human trafficking to young and old who may be at risk for being victimized by traffickers.
$75 will purchase a crime scene processing tool kit to teach officers how to process an elephant or other wildlife crime scene in Africa. No donation is too small–in the end, your Amazon purchases when combined with LWOB’s own purchasing power and the purchases of other supporters can begin to create an income stream that is meaningful. And, with Amazon–all you have to do is select LWOB as your charity at the Amazon Smile link.
When you shop through Amazon Smile using this link–your shopping dollars not only give to family and friends, they support our charity and rule of law programming.
As part of the Amazon Smile program, Amazon will donate to Lawyers Without Borders when you do your Amazon shopping through this link:
Christina M. Storm
Lawyers Without Borders
203-823-9397 Ext. 402
Lawyers Without Borders Establishes New Advisory Council Recently Appointed Members Will Support Non-Profit’s Leadership and Mission WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 22, 2015) — Lawyers Without Borders, Inc. (“LWOB”) announced the creation of an Advisory Council (“Council”) to help grow and inspire pro bonoservice among members of the legal profession and to enhance the organization’s capacity building programming around the world. The Council will provide complimentary support to LWOB’s leadership while delivering ideas and suggestions for how LWOB can improve its programming, pro bono management, and organizational development. The inaugural Council has been selected and consists of the following individuals from law firms and institutions that have contributed substantial financial or project support to LWOB rule of law initiatives:
- Joel M. Cohen, Partner – Gibson Dunn
- Stephen D. Hibbard, Partner – Shearman & Sterling LLP
- Sara Lulo, Assistant Dean – Yale Law School
- Gregory G. Palmer, Partner – McDermott Will & Emery LLP
- Laura Tuell Parcher, Partner – Jones Day
“We are thrilled that these committed professionals have agreed to serve on our inaugural Advisory Council,” said Christina Storm, LWOB Founder and Executive Director. “They have all played a pivotal role in managing or overseeing large-scale LWOB projects, and we are confident that they will use their keen insight to help LWOB in its mission to support the rule of law and access to justice around the world.” About Lawyers Without BordersFounded in 2000, Lawyers Without Borders is a U.S.-based international non-profit dedicated to preserving the integrity of the legal process through training, community outreach, capacity building, neutral observation and other mechanisms that support rule of law and access to justice in national contexts consistent with international norms. Regions where the group has projects ongoing or planned include Liberia, Namibia, Ghana, Nepal, Indonesia, Burkina Faso, the Caribbean, Tanzania, and Kenya. The official Lawyers Without Borders currently has only these two affiliates, LWOB-UK and LWOB-Kenya. This year marks the 15th anniversary of LWOB operations.
You can support LWOB’s work globally – by donating via Network for Good or The Big Give or by clicking on the “donate” button at LWOB’s website: lawyerswithoutborders.wordpress.com.
Lawyers without Borders proudly announces LegalElite and Engajer as our new supporter and partner! Both companies are leaders of technological innovations in their respective fields, particularly targeted for functional and mass-scale operational improvements of legal market stakeholders. Engajer will assist LWOB produce a series of interactive videos hand-crafted into effective, comprehensible educational tools, with the benefit of LegalElite’s experience in legal technology.
About LegalElite: LegalElite provides website design and digital marketing services for law firms. Our mission is to establish and grow your digital presence with the objective of creating new business opportunities online. When you sign up with us, we start by creating a modern and mobile-friendly website for your firm. Once your new website launches, our marketing specialists get to work growing your digital presence through a combination of content and search engine optimization, social media management, email marketing, and online advertising. Our websites are safe and secure so you can be worry-free and just focus on the leads we deliver. You focus on doing business. We work on creating it. That’s the way it should be.
LWOB’s eighth year of trial advocacy programming launched in August 2015, with a 10 day combined Train The Trainer and Trial Advocacy Training in Nairobi, Kenya representing the launch of a two year initiative combating wildlife crime in the region.
In contrast to previous trial advocacy programs, this program offered additional focus on the investigatory side of the prosecution and the relevant forensics. Consultation with forensic and clinical scientists will continue to play an important role in the two-year program–all reflective of the international commitment to support the preservation of at-risk wildlife in Kenya and surrounding regions.
LWOB is collaborating with scientists from the Henry C. Lee Institute of Forensic Science, in New Haven CT on creation of forensic eLearning modules.
The program wrapped up early in 2017 with several hundred officers trained by LWOB and future training overseen by the KWS and a team of specially trained officers who will continue officer crime scene processing training in the years to come.
Multiple day-long eLearning sessions were conducted, with 10 attendees each day, each equipped with his or her own pre-programmed lap top. The majority of the attendees at this session represented members of the NGO community working with victims and was focused on important ways they can intersect with the prosecution and law enforcement, using collaboration and cooperation strategies to improve victim protection and the success of TIP (trafficking in persons) prosecutions. The eLearning was supplemented by hard-copy course materials (graphic novels, RRC’s) and LWOB’s newly developed board game, “Find Me!” The eLearning and newly developed materials were all exceptionally well received and are destined to become a regular feature of LWOB programming.
HISTORY OF LWOB PROGRAMMING IN LIBERIA:
Our work in Liberia follows LWOB’s completion of a large scale project meeting a need identified in its assessment three years ago for a cumulative index to the entirety of Liberian case law. Having worked with over 100 lawyers at Linklaters indexing all Liberian case law LWOB was well positioned to incorporate Liberian case law into its programming. LWOB is pleased to report that the LWOB/Linklaters/Thomson Reuters collaboration on the Liberian Digest project started years ago, continues, now underwritten entirely with in-kind pro bono support. It is possibly one of the most important examples of the pro bono paradigm that inspired LWOB’s founding fifteen years ago. It is a testament to the power of pro bono collaboratives and sustainability.
Two trial advocacy trainings in Liberia are now complete (2010, 2013). Those trainings taught standard basics in trial advocacy in a customized, created for and by LWOB, mock trial scenario based upon a Liberian trafficking in persons prosecution. LWOB incorporates its own version of the NITA “learning by doing™” approach in the trial advocacy modules which involve taping, reviewing and critiquing lawyers direct and cross examination, opening statements and closing arguments. NITA supports the LWOB programming with the donation of its Modern Trial Advocacy text books, trainers and underwriting support.
In 2010, LWOB partnered with the Avon Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School to develop and deliver trafficking-specific modules which included an overview of Trafficking and the role and use of international conventions and obligations in a trial. LWOB tapped into portions of the UNODC Toolkit as a resource and guide. Additional LWOB materials were created to compliment the UNODC Toolkit as well.
LWOB integrated its own signature special challenges modules on substantive and evidentiary issues using avatar technology donated to LWOB by Oddcast.com. That portion of the program included evidentiary demonstrations and programming designed to illustrate “best practices” in victim pre-trial interviews and investigation and witness preparation as well as actual Liberian cases illustrating rules governing such issues as witness voir dire and the child as witnesses. The program was supplemented with community oriented materials created by lawyers at Linklaters LLP who worked with LWOB’s graphic artist to create two illustrated publications featuring best practices for the practitioner working on TIPS issues and educating citizens to recognize trafficking situations and rights and resources for the person victimized by trafficking.
Click here to view the illustrated publication “Understanding Human Trafficking” created for the Liberian Bar: Human Trafficking – Liberia – Illustrated graphic novel . A second publication accompanied by a trainer manual has been completed and distributed to lawyers and judges throughout the country that focuses on the lawyer/judge interaction with victims of human trafficking that come before them. The third in a series of four (4) graphic novels is scheduled for distribution at the 2014 training and the fourth in the series will be distributed at the 2015 training. They involve the police investigatory phase of trafficking prosecutions and the trafficking trial.
In 2013, LWOB’s training included, for the first time, 20 law enforcement personnel and connected their important role in the investigatory stage to successful prosecutions in Court. LWOB’s work in Liberia for the next three years is funded by a grant from the JTIP department of the United States Department of State. Interim police trainings will continue throughout the life of the grant. Two additional large-scale trainings integrating all the stakeholders in human trafficking prosecutions, are now scheduled for late 2014 and spring 2015.
Current pro bono partners working on materials for those trainings include the lawyers from Linklaters, who now enter their fourth year of work with LWOB on human trafficking in Liberia and McDermott Will & Emery’s London office which completed LWOB’s first human trafficking publication educating youth to dangers that expose them to potential trafficking scenarios. Lawyers from Pfizer, Jones Day and Shearman & Sterling rounded out the 2013 training team.
The Fall 2015 team, delayed by the Ebola emergency, will again be led by Hon. Virginia Kendall (DC Ill) a federal judge recognized internationally for her work in human trafficking and will include partners from several international law firms in a supportive relationship with LWOB. Lawyers at Linklaters have completed the fourth in a series of Human Trafficking Graphic Novels that will be integrated into the eLearning as well as distributed in hard-pring.
LWOB has received a small funding award that will support mass production and distribution of the educational board game FIND ME! Distribution will launch, in Liberia, in the summer of 2015. LWOB will also introduce the game at a convening of several state stakeholders during international human trafficking event sponsored by the ILO in May 2015. Organizations interested in purchasing a copy of the Human Trafficking Training board-game should reach out to LWOB at email@example.com with the words FIND ME! in the subject line
With a grant from The Virtue Foundation and financial and logistics support from Kirkland & Ellis LLP, LWOB brought 11 trainers to Ghana for a judicial training for magistrates and circuit judges focused on effective strategies to improve the experience of the pro se litigant in the juvenile, circuit and family courts there. The Virtue Foundation has been a steady supporter of LWOB programming in gender violence and has supported its trial advocacy trainings in Kenya for the last several years. Kirkland & Ellis is a new supporter of LWOB and in addition to playing a critical role in creation of the training materials sent two partners and an associate to complement six LWOB in-house lawyers and judges.
The program tapped into LWOB lawyers’ experience with state family courts, gender violence and juvenile law. New role-play exercises and modules prepared especially for this training and contextualized to Ghana were featured for the first time. Interactive modules and game play learning environments are a signature of LWOB programming.
The program was conducted under guidance from Ghana’s Judicial Reform Unit and Chief Justice Georgina Wood. Hon. Ann C. Williams led the LWOB delegation, joined by Hon. Ellen Gesmer and Chief Judge of the Cook County Circuit Court, Hon. Timothy Evans.
LWOB in collaboration with long time supporter Shearman & Sterling and its clients Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) launched a groundbreaking multimedia campaign to maximize public awareness of the rights and obligations of Kenyans under the Kenya Sexual Offences Act.
The team designed public education materials using the characters, storyline and distribution platform of Shuga: Love, Sex, Money—a TV drama produced by MTV Networks Africa in association with The MTV Staying Alive Foundation, through a partnership with PEPFAR (The US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), The Partnership for an HIV-Free Generation and the Kenyan government. The series is being shown on television stations worldwide including DStv (across Africa), Kenyan terrestrial channels Citizen TV, Kiss TV and Nation TV, BET (international), e.tv (South Africa) and Silverbird TV (Nigeria). It addresses “taboo topics such as rape and sex-for-gifts, told through the lives of realistic characters and emotional situations drawn from real life.”
Viacom International Media Networks, Lawyers Without Borders and Shearman & Sterling consulted with the Shuga team during the pre-production stage of the series in support of a rape plotline around which the public legal education campaign could be based. The Shearman & Sterling team also provided pro bono guidance and support to Shuga: Love, Sex, Money by analysing Kenyan case law, identifying core messages for public education, and drafting materials such as a gender violence resources section, blogs, a graphic novel and other non-traditional educational media. Many of these materials can be found online at www.mtvshuga.com. The graphic novel has been running in a weekly serial in Nairobi’s newspaper The Star and is now available online: http://mtvshuga.com/downloads/Shuga%20Graphic%20Novel.pdf
“This important project demonstrates the passion and commitment that both Viacom International Media Networks and Shearman & Sterling share for social responsibility,” said Roger James, Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Viacom International Media Networks. “The goal of this project is to increase legal education with respect to gender-based violence in a dynamic, truly engaging and original manner. We’re very proud that our efforts are helping to make a difference.” To download the magazine right click and select ‘download’ here.
A special thanks to the Nairobi STAR http://www.the-star.co.ke/ newspaper, for running the graphic novel in the weekend edition of its paper following the televised episodes. The Star has a circulation of over 30,000 and its support of LWOB pro bono work in this and other projects has exponentially increased the audience and impact at zero cost, thanks to the paper’s generosity.
We are pleased to announce that this tremendous collaboration will continue throughout 2014-2015 with a new venture involving the same partners in a SHUGA Nigeria roll out. Watch the first episode of SHUGA Nigeria here: http://www.bellanaija.com/2013/12/06/its-finally-here-watch-episode-1-of-mtv-bases-shuga-season-3-ho…