“Advocacy Action Plan” W/shop Aims to Protect, Promote Community Land Rights

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A four day “Advocacy Action Plan” workshop to address the protection and promotion of community land rights for national development, which is part of the EU funded project, “Land Rights for Liberia”, is scheduled for November 20 thru 24 in Monrovia. The Land Rights for Liberia Project is implemented through three organizations: Welthungerhilfe (WHH), Sustainable Development Institute (SDI) and Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD); each with one or more partners.  The Workshop will bring together national and international partners, government entities, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), among others.

The advocacy workshop aims at the development of an advocacy and a gender sensitive communication strategy. Both strategies will be jointly implemented and rolled out through the CSO Working Group on the Land Rights Reform in Liberia in the coming months throughout the end of the project in 2018.

The Land Rights for Liberia Project seeks to facilitate the effort to encourage the passage of the Land Rights Bill, which is currently before the 53rd Legislature. It also focuses on creating awareness at national, county and community levels as well as improving the advocacy and organizational capacities of Civil Society Organizations.

The project further supports communities in self-identification, land claim declaration & land space identification, community mapping, land use and management plan, knowledge sharing and networking as well as legal support to communities.

Welthungerhilfe will implement the project for two years while SDI and CAFOD use a three-year period. One of the objectives of the project is to achieve the passage of the Land Rights Bill into the Land Rights Act (LRA) in strong collaboration with and support from the Liberia Land Authority (LLA). The LLA, the Government Agency for all land matters, has prioritized the land tenure reforms as a major government’s agenda deliverable to stimulate economic development for Liberia.

The proposed LRA recognizes the ownership of customary land, a complex system of land rights and principles, which include the right to possess and use of land. The bill is under review and debate at the Legislature.

Interestingly, farmers will benefit from the Land Rights Act because it will protect their farm land and stimulate investment in their farm land with a positive effect on sustainable food and nutrition security in Liberia by increasing their production to feed the growing population of Liberia.

However, these activities during the workshop will allow consultants to review past assessments, reports and other relevant materials to get an understanding of the entire project from all partners. It will also allow consultants to develop a training module and facilitation strategy for the roll out of the activity with the CSO working group.

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