Breaking Barriers, Transforming Lives: 2023 HLAF Accomplishments

HLAF’s accomplishment in 2023 showcased efforts to challenge societal barriers and transform the lives of its beneficiaries. It highlights the advocacies for forwarding inclusive policies, equal rights, and access to justice, emphasizing the transformative effect on individuals, families, and different communities.

HLAF facilitated the release of 882 Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDLs) all over the Philippines together with interns and volunteers. 1,407 Case Consultations and follow-ups were provided to PDLs. Because of the unending support of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, HLAF’s case consultations and follow-up offered individualized support tailored to the specific needs and circumstances of each PDL, fostering trust, providing assistance, and promoting hope for those who may have lost it.

PDLs gained a better understanding of their legal situation, procedural rights, and potential pathways for legal recourse. Throughout the years, HLAF has proved that highlighting systemic issues within the legal system affecting PDLs potentially led to advocacy for broader legal reforms and improvements.

HLAF’s expertise has helped in developing and implementing strategies to alleviate overcrowding in jail facilities and bahay pag-asas ensuring better living conditions and access to essential services for persons deprived of liberty (PDLs), children in conflict with the law, and those at risk.

HLAF advocated for policy reforms that address systemic issues affecting PDL and former inmates, leading to improved conditions and rights protection. HLAF developed and provided evidence-based interventions that address the challenges faced by PDL and former inmates.

HLAF capacitated persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) and equipped them with essential legal knowledge, enabling them to understand their rights, navigate legal processes, and advocate for themselves within the justice system. The training increased PDLs’ access to legal assistance and representation, improving their ability to defend their rights and seek legal remedies. Trained PDLs served as advocates and sources of support for their fellow detainees, contributing to a more equitable and informed environment inside jails.

There were 264 children whose rights, welfare, and well-being were promoted, forwarded, and protected because of the capacity training programs to more than 2,300 government employees, jail officers, local child protection officers, barangay officials, and other groups on different topics such as Human Rights, Juvenile Justice, and Restorative Justice which promoted values, beliefs, and attitudes that encouraged them and their beneficiaries, especially those most vulnerable people to uphold their rights and those of other individuals.

HLAF’s structured visits involve organizing a planned and systematic visit for the duty-bearers (such as government officials, policymakers, or donors) to interact with individuals or communities who have benefitted from HLAF’s programs and activities.

HLAF facilitated open discussions between the duty bearers being capacitated and successful beneficiaries, focusing on the challenges and achievements in accessing justice, promoting human rights, and forwarding inclusive policies for children.

HLAF collaborated with different provinces to help establish local justice zone coordinating councils toward promoting better quality of access to justice especially for those remote or marginalized communities.

Moreover, HLAF facilitated discussions and encouraged community involvement in the administration of justice, fostering a sense of ownership and responsibility in addressing local legal issues. Throughout the years, HLAF’s presence in the Local Justice Zones contributed to strengthening the rule of law at the grassroots level, promoting accountability, transparency, and fairness in resolving legal matters.

HLAF’s national conference enhanced the knowledge and skills of Social Workers and Criminologists but also fostered a progressive perspective, encouraging more responsive, sensitive, adaptive, and inclusive intervention programs for individuals in contact with the Criminal Justice System. Social Workers and Criminologists are equipped to comprehend and articulate the circumstances of children, particularly those in contact with the justice system.

There were 26 successfully reintegrated former persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) back into the community. HLAF supported persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) and former inmates in transitioning back into society, helping them rebuild their lives, find employment opportunities, and access essential support services.

HLAF fostered community engagement and created pathways for PDL and former inmates to receive support from local organizations and community members as they reintegrate. HLAF helped reduce recidivism rates by providing PDL and former inmates with the necessary support and resources for a successful return to their communities.

HLAF facilitated dialogues and collaboration between duty bearers, correctional facilities, and community organizations to fill gaps in support services and reintegration programs.

HLAF helped raise community awareness about reintegration programs, leading to increased acceptance and understanding of the challenges faced by PDL and former inmates alike. It has contributed to the development of supportive policies and programs tailored to the specific reintegration needs of these groups of people.

HLAF’s reintegration training has provided duty-bearers with a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by PDL and former inmates, such as social stigma, limited access to employment, and the need for community support.

HLAF equipped duty-bearers with skills and knowledge to identify and address specific challenges, such as barriers to housing, employment, and social reintegration.


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