Paralegals and VRTS play a very integral role in the organization. The same is so because, they are the people on the ground and help in responding to violence cases geared towards the LGBTIQ+ community members. In addition to responding, Paralegals and VRTs have the obligation of documenting the said violations and violence cases for follow ups by the relevant people in the office. Having seen the laxity and inability of some of the paralegals in responding, reporting and documenting of violations towards the LGBTIQ community, there was need to have a refresher training to remind the paralegals and VRTs of their mandate and obligation to the organization.
With the help of Legal Empowerment Fund, Pema Kenya organized a 5-day refresher training at Pride inn hotel Nyali. The training began on the 19th of September 2022 and ended on the 23rd of September 2022. The refresher training brought together 7 paralegals and VPRTs, 3community members,3 staff and 1 facilitator. On day 1 of the training, the Paralegals, VRTs and members were able to air the challenges they face to the Executive Director of Pema (Ishmael Bahati) and the Head of Programs (Vincent Obwanda). On day 2, the trainees were able to meet visitors from Defend Defenders (Uganda).
Important to note is that, the training touched on the aspect of human rights. The trainees were taken through the rights every person enjoys in the constitution and the punitive legislations available. They were also taken through effective responding, reporting and documentation of cases and violations geared towards the LGBTIQ.
On the last day, the trainees got a chance to have a mental health talk, the talk was led by Cate Kariuki the board chair of Pema Kenya. In attendance also was Hunniel Chivatsi a member to the board.
GOAL OF THE TRAINING
- To sharpen responding, reporting and documenting skills of the Paralegals and VRTs
- To mend broken relationships amongst the Paralegals and VRTs
OUTCOME OF THE TRAINING
- The participants were able to understand the Human rights in the bill of rights
- The participants came out with advanced knowledge in responding, reporting and documenting skills of violations and violence cases.
- Participants were able to share the challenges they face and still face in their Paralegal and VPRTs.
The training was helpful in equipping the Paralegals and VPRTs the nitis grittis in documentation and responding to violence. The training also gave the trainees a chance to gain knowledge on HIV/AIDs and how to deal with LGBITQ+ who are infected.
The trainees also got a chance to mend broken relationships amongst themselves. Some of the paralegals and VPRTS were not in good terms which hindered their service delivery.
- Wanyonyi NANDASABA HUMPHREY, Policy and Advocacy assistant officer.
- Omollo John, Programs assistant
- Nekesa Wandera, Health officer