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Pillars of the community: how trained volunteers defend land rights in Tanzania

Godfrey Massay

Research report, 20 pages

Training volunteers to help their communities defend their land rights has proved an effective approach for promoting land justice in Tanzania. This report documents how Hakiardhi, a Dar-es-Salaambased research institute working on land governance issues, has established and trained a 600-strong network of male and female ‘Land Rights Monitors’ (LRMs) operating in 300 villages on various aspects of the land law, so they can help people and local governments to exercise and ensure respect for their legal rights in land disputes. While this approach can be used to tackle different types of land conflicts, this report focuses primarily on examples related to the impact of large-scale land-based investments. It describes in detail the process that was put in place, distils lessons learned from implementing the approach, and provides tips for legal empowerment practitioners interested in adapting it to their respective contexts.

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Massay, G. (2016) Pillars of the community: how trained volunteers defend land rights in Tanzania. IIED, London.

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Around the world, citizens' groups are taking action to change the way investments in natural resources are happening, to protect the rights of citizens and the environment for a fairer and more sustainable world. The Legal Tools for Citizen Empowerment initiative shares tools and tactics among practitioners.

More at www.iied.org:
Legal tools for citizen empowerment: sharing lessons from innovation

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