The Network Has Spoken - Results of the Annual Survey

In February, the Global Legal Empowerment Network took part in an annual survey to assess where our movement is at and where we need to go.

The results are in, and they tell us a lot.

You can read the full annual survey results here: 2017 Annual Network Survey.pdf (464.8 KB)

We are an extraordinary global community—representing over 150 countries. We are united by a common purpose: putting the power of law in people’s hands. Respondents expressed the need to strengthen our collective capacity by creating resources and learning opportunities along thematic and programmatic areas.

However, feedback from our members also shows that our field is caught in a two-sided crisis.

Many of us are struggling for funding.

Sixty-seven percent of respondents either had to make cuts or will not be able to operate in the coming year due to funding concerns.

Our field is also under threat.

Sixty-eight percent of respondents said they were threatened for carrying out legal empowerment work.

What should we do about it?

We’ve launched a new global campaign, Justice For All, to collectively advocate for financing and protection globally. Ninety-six percent of survey respondents said they want to take part in this campaign. We invite you to join us as we #TipTheScales towards #JusticeForAll.


There are many ways to take part:

Sign the pledge to support and protect grassroots justice defenders everywhere. Become a campaign supporter or join the monthly coalition call.

We are already planning to take part in the 100 year anniversary of the birth of Nelson Mandela in Johannesburg, South Africa with The Elders, the OGP Summit in Tbilisi, Georgia, and the High Level Politial Forum in New York, USA. We plan on pressing the issue with veteran Network Guidance Committee members at the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly around the 10th Anniversary of the Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor this September in New York.

We want to hear from you -

What can you do in your country to support this campaign? What strategies or coalitions can Justice For All support in your region? What other actions can help us move our collective priorities forward together?

Please tell us your thoughts below and we can discuss.

Looking forward,

Michael, Ashley, and the Global Legal Empowerment Network Team


In May, Musa Usman Ndamba (@ndambamusa) , a justice defender from Cameroon and member of the Global Legal Empowerment Network, was sentenced to six months in prison and a fine of 1 million CFA ($1,000 USD). This comes after five years of judicial harassment for unsubstantiated allegations of defamation by a wealthy and powerful business man. His hearings were adjourned over 55 times during this period, impacting his work, health, and family.

Thankfully he was recently released on bail after significant pressure and advocacy by many members of the Global Legal Empowerment Network, but his case epitomizes the urgent need for greater protection and financing for justice defenders. The Justice For All campaign is the need of the hour.


It’s high time advocates build members to rally around them in a time like this, we need volunteers to stand for us. I have over 2500 volunteers and we still keep growing in numbers everyday, we also train them in paralegal for self development.Am sorry for everything you’ve gone through.


Good day from SA and good to hear from you after some and and hope that you are OK.

The struggle for grassroot justice continues.

Seth Mnguni (Acaosa)


We are at the point of building a union after we start we will join all organizations together and we will be able to support one another hold on till we meet up and our next conversation I’ll have more to say