Accessing Justice

  • One-on-one legal advice from the Legal Aid Board<br>at KMCRC officesOne-on-one legal advice from the Legal Aid Board
    at KMCRC offices
  • Thandeka Nyoka giving paralegal adviceThandeka Nyoka giving paralegal advice
  • 2015-2016 team of ambassadors2015-2016 team of ambassadors

Costly fees have made legal assistance a luxury service that the vulnerable KwaMakhutha community simply cannot afford. We at the KwaMakhutha Community Resource Centre’s Legal Desk provide free and quality legal advice on a variety of matters, such as:

  • Human rights
  • Labour
  • Social security
  • Gender based violence

The Paralegal Desk deals with a large number of cases brought forward by residents and our Ambassadors. Many residents need assistance regarding:

  • Birth certificate applications
  • All forms of grants and pensions
  • Identity documents
  • Access to medication

In South Africa, if a child does not have a birth certificate they cannot enrol in school or access a social grant. Adults that do not have identity books or incorrect documentation are unable to apply for jobs, housing, grants and many basic services. The Legal Activists assist in educating and informing residents about the correct way to apply for grants and identity documents.

If a case brought to our Paralegal Desk needs in-depth intervention, qualified Lawyers from Legal Aid South Africa and Probono.Org are asked to step in. Lawyers from Legal Aid South Africa visit the Paralegal Desk on a regular basis to offer assistance to our residents.

Many people’s lives are improved through the intervention provided by the Paralegal Desk and the Legal Activists. The Legal Activists also deal with local conflict resolution by facilitating mediation between parties involved.

Our 90 Ambassadors are our eyes and ears on the ground.

They are trained by the South African Social Security Agency and conduct homes visits in and around KwaMakhutha. Cases identified are handed over to the KwaMakhutha Community Resource Centre for further intervention.

During home visits, the Ambassadors usually pick up on many challenges experienced by households, some of them are:

  • Incomplete identity document applications
  • Gender based violence cases
  • Inability to access grants
  • Child abuse
  • Child headed homes
  • Sick and bed ridden people who require assistance
  • Hunger and food insecurity resulting in the short term need for food parcels

The cases identified by the Ambassadors are handed over to the Accessing Justice team. Our Legal Activists that are part of this team facilitate access to justice and services. They have strategically formed close relations with various government departments, social workers, NGO’s and many other relevant stakeholders. This enables them to promptly access assistance, advice and information together with the individual/household concerned.

The Ambassador’s hard work is seen through the positive change that is evident in the community.