On Monday through Friday from 9 am to 4 pm, GCI holds an open-office drop-in center to receive complaints about human rights abuses.
After a staff member processes and reviews the complaint, GCI offers the following services:
GCI counseling aims to assist victims of human rights abuses to become mentally prepared and empowered to face the challenges of abuses. Activities include legal and psychosocial counseling, client registration, and performing needs and psychological assessments. The counseling focuses on the following areas:
– Counseling: Individual and group counseling as well as guidance. Counseling communities on low level dispute management and on the elimination of jungle justice.
– Psychological testing: Psychological testing to help in diagnosis, understanding the problem, and to helping in designing interventions.
– Social service provision: Conducting prison visits to help assess prisoners’ needs and network with partner organisations to ensure that prisoners receive the basics they need, which include temporary drugs, food, water and access to health facilities.
– Education and training: Educating target groups on human rights, governance, anti-corruption, mediation and environmental and health rights.
Important achievements of GCI’s counseling system include:
– Improvement in coping attitudes: After undergoing counseling with GCI, Kumba prisoners are more positive towards life and hold more realistic expectations of their fate.
– Improving mental health: the access to counseling professionals has led to improved mental health amongst prisoners.
– Established functional referral system: a network of various professionals and institutions to whom we make referrals.
– Reduced cases of mob killings in communities
– Increased volume of low level disputes at community levels and more confidence in mediation structures
Pro bono Work/Legal Assistance:
Some of the complaints we receive are criminal matters, for which we rely upon our pro-bono partnerships or the barristers serving on our Board of Directors for legal counsel and support. In these instances of legal assistance, we will either ask one of the barristers on our board for advice on the matter, or we will directly refer the party(ies) to specific barristers in our pro-bono partnerships for legal assistance. GCI is works with the following barristers and law firms in our pro-bono partnership program:
- Ambo-Esah Law Firm, Kumba
- Amumba Law Firm, Kumba
- Eyambe Ebai Law Firm, Kumba
- Ngenko Law Firm, Kumba
- Pen’s Law Chambers, Kumba
- Mpako & Associates Law Firm, Kumba