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LIBERIA eProgramming Launched: Summer 2015
LWOB Human Trafficking Program Back on Track

Our work in Liberia follows LWOB's completion of a  large scale project meeting a need identified in its assessment three years ago for a cumulative index to the entirety of Liberian case law. Having worked with over 100 lawyers at Linklaters indexing all Liberian case law LWOB was well positioned to incorporate Liberian case law into its programming. LWOB is pleased to report that the LWOB/Linklaters/Thomson Reuters collaboration on the Liberian Digest project started years ago, continues, now underwritten entirely with in-kind pro bono support. It  is possibly one of the most important examples of the pro bono paradigm that inspired LWOB's founding fifteen years ago. It is a testament to the power of pro bono collaboratives and sustainability. 

After conducting human trafficking  trial advocacy trainings in Liberia (2010, 2013) LWOB embarked on programming that could be launched in-country with small teams and in spite of the challenges to training resulting from the Ebola situation. Like the "live" large scale trial advocacy trainings that taught standard basics in trial advocacy based upon customized mock trial scenario, the eLearnings currently being launched in Liberia give our in-country partners a stronger self sustaining framework for Liberian led trainings. 

In 2010, LWOB partnered with the Avon Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School to develop and deliver trafficking-specific modules which included an overview of Trafficking and the role and use of international conventions and obligations in a trial. LWOB tapped into portions of  the UNODC Toolkit as a resource and guide. Additional LWOB materials were created to  compliment the UNODC Toolkit as well. LWOB and the Avon Center at Cornell have plans in development to continue this collaboration in other regions throughout Africa in 2015-2016. 

Historically, LWOB has integrated its own signature special challenges modules on substantive and evidentiary issues using avatar technology donated to LWOB by Oddcast.com.  That portion of the program includes evidentiary demonstrations and programming designed to illustrate  "best practices" in victim pre-trial interviews and investigation and witness preparation as well as actual Liberian cases illustrating rules governing such issues as witness voir dire and the child as witnesses.  These have been integrated into our 2015 eLearning program, with the added feature of more interactivity. In the eLearning setting, each trainee works through the program on his or her own laptop provided by LWOB. 

Since 2013, LWOB's TIP program has been supplemented with community oriented materials created by lawyers at Linklaters LLP,  The first two graphic novels featured best practices for the practitioner working on TIPS issues and educating citizens to recognize trafficking situations and rights and resources for the person victimized by trafficking. In 2014 and 2015 the firm, working with LWOB in-house staff, created two new graphic novels that integrate law enforcement and social workers, illustrating the collaborative environment that is required to successfully prosecute TIP crimes and maximize the protection offered to the victims of TIP crimes. 

Click here to view the first illustrated publication "Understanding Human Trafficking" created for the Liberian Bar: Human Trafficking - Liberia - Illustrated graphic novel .  A second publication accompanied by a trainer manual has distributed to lawyers and judges throughout the country that focuses on the lawyer/judge interaction with victims of human trafficking that come before them. The third and fourth graphic novels are currently being distributed in-country as part of the launch of the 1 and 2 day eLearning modules. 

LWOB supporting partners who have worked on materials for its work in include the lawyers from Linklaters, who now enter their fourth year of work with LWOB on human trafficking in Liberia and McDermott Will & Emery's London office which completed LWOB's first human trafficking publication educating youth to dangers that expose them to potential trafficking scenarios, lawyers from Pfizer (2013) , Jones Day (2013) and Shearman & Sterling (2007, 2010 and 2013) who were part of the in-country trainings.  

The Fall 2015 team, delayed by the Ebola emergency,  will again be led  by Hon. Virginia Kendall (DC Ill) a federal judge recognized internationally for her work in human trafficking and will include partners from several international law firms in a supportive relationship with LWOB. 

Thanks to a grant from the Doolittle Foundation,  LWOB's  production and global distribution of the human trafficking educational  board game  FIND ME! is in full swing in East and West Africa.  A version of the game is available for Asia, upon request.  Organizations interested in purchasing a copy of the Human Trafficking Training board-game should reach out to LWOB at info@lwob.org  with the words FIND ME! in the subject line.