The Enhancing Customary Justice Systems in the Mau Forest (Justice) Project piloted an approach for improving women’s access to customary justice, particularly related to women’s land rights, by enhancing the customary justice system in one target area. The work also resulted in a clearer understanding of the relationships between customary and statutory institutions and laws, and the development of a model to promote the integration of informal and formal justice systems. The pilot activity complemented other USAID programs in Kenya focused on addressing land/resource tenure, access to justice, and governance challenges, in the upper Mara River catchment area within the Mau Forest Complex, Kenya (“Mau”). By design, this project has relied extensively on assessments and other information, for and under the ProMara project, gathered since February 2010.
The pilot project lasted from 2010 - 2012 and a follow-on project began in 2013. The follow-on project seeks to share the Kenya Justice Project approach as well as results and lessons learned from the Project evaluation to explore opportunities and support for broader sustainable application throughout Kenya, particularly focused on formalizing and institutionalizing linkages and processes between the formal and informal justice sectors, consistent with Article 159 of Kenya’s Constitution.