Expanding Access to Justice in Colombia
Casals & Associates partnered with Florida International University (FIU) on a $20 million U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) effort to support judicial reform and modernization in Colombia as well as broaden access to justice. As a subcontractor, Casals & Associates worked with FIU to support national programs to sustain and expand the capacity of Colombia’s justice system, with particular attention to the needs of conflict affected and/or rural-based, geographically isolated, economically marginalized and socially disenfranchised populations.
Casals & Associates was also in charge of implementing Component 4 of the project, which aimed to enhance civil society’s roles in justice reform and modernization. The task of this component was to support three other components by using public outreach strategies to explore and implement ways in which civil society can become more closely integrated in justice reform. Activities included the following:
- Creating an inventory of Colombian civil society organizations working on justice-related initiatives
- Promoting the creation and operation of regional and sectoral networks that seek to broaden minority interests
- Identifying and facilitating feasible strategic alliances and closer coordination with other donors
- Conducting a comprehensive public education and media outreach campaign
- Managing and operating a U.S. $5 million small grants program aimed at supporting civil society