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The Ethiopian Women Lawyers Association (EWLA) is a non-profit women’s advocacy group founded by Ethiopian women lawyers.

EWLA’s vision is to see a country where women are equal to men and articulates its mission as promoting the economic, political, social and legal rights of women and assist them to secure full protection of their rights under the Constitution of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and other international human rights conventions.

EWLA's Programs

Under its Legal Aid Program EWLA assists women, particularly disadvantaged women, who are victims of gender-based violence free of charge. The service includes legal advice/counseling, writing court briefs (court charges and affidavits) as well as representing clients in courts.

Free Legal Aid Service

This service is a crucial step in helping women and girls start to climb the steps to get access to legal response mechanisms and to demand their rights. EWLA is the place where they get relief.

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Public Education and Capacity Building

The public awareness programs conducted by EWLA are believed to produce a society less tolerant of any gender-based violence perpetrated against women. 

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Research and Law Reform Advocacy

EWLA undertakes research projects that are often used as a basis for advocacy, legal reform and related programs. This greatly helps to identify root causes of gender discrimination which in turn can dictate prevention efforts.

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Why Legal Aid Service to Women and Female Children

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Beneficiaries
Service Quality
Litigation
Counseling

What are the beneficiaries of the legal aid service?

Women with no or limited financial capability to access legal services; mothers with the burden of taking care of children while having no money to buy bread, to provide roof over their head, to buy medicine, to send the children to school and to buy clothes; women who have been beaten, bitten, burnt, cut and degraded; girls who have been raped and sexually molested, wedded in childhood, abducted, beaten and burnt; women who have been denied of their property, their jobs and their means of income; children denied of parents, denied of support crucial for their upbringing, and denied of succession.

Professional Capability

EWLA legal aid service is provided by 16 employees and 300 hundred volunteers with high commitment and expertise which capacities them to pinpoint the right solutions for cases handled by them. Those volunteers from disciplines other than law are intensively trained in law and serve as paralegals in areas where legal professionals are non-existent. The service the volunteers provide under the EWLA hub is priceless to the Association but it can also be expressed in monetary as well as time terms which come up to 30,000 hours of free service per year.

Preparation of Written Litigation

considering that justice will be jeopardized for women who cannot access justice sector organs due to lack of finance and information EWLA prepares all litigation papers (suits, responses, appeals, cross-appeals, affidavits) for the women to file at the court. This requires expertise in the legal field as well as other procedural and managerial skills. The types of remedies sought for the clients are various.

There have been instances where EWLA’s members or staff members go to administrative bodies when clearly stated laws are infringed. EWLA has maintained good relationship with the police and the public prosecutors in its working years.

Counseling Services

EWLA assists women, particularly disadvantaged women, who are victims of gender-based violence free of charge. The service includes legal advice/counseling, writing court briefs (court charges and affidavits) as well as representing clients in courts.  

Legal aid service is a crucial step in helping women and girls start to climb the steps to get access to legal response mechanisms and to demand their rights. Mothers and girls with pain of injustice come seeking legal aid and EWLA is the place where they get relief.

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Lensa Biyena

Executive Director of EWLA

ባለፉት አመታት እና ወራት ለማህበሩ ስላበረከቱት በጎ ተግባራት እና አገልግሎት እጅግ አድርገን እናመሰግናለን! መጪዉን አዲስ አመትም ተባብረንና ተግተን በመስራት ስኬታማ እናደርገዋለን! 


Warm thanks for all your contribution and services in the past years and months. Let’s continue to support each other for our success in 2013. Happy Ethiopian New Year. 

EWLA Awards