Legal Aid Service Interventions and Women Empowerment: A Case of Morogoro Rural and Kongwa Districts, Tanzania
International Journal of Asian Social Science
Article History Keywords Women empowerment Legal aid services Tanzania Legal Aid Service (LAS) intervention is considered to have an influence on women empowerment through raising awareness of women towards their rights. Using Kongwa and Morogoro Rural districts as study areas, a study was conducted involving 240 women (120 beneficiaries and 120 non-beneficiaries of LAS). A cross-sectional research design was used, whereby random selection of respondents was done. Statistical Package for the
... Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyze the data. A Composite Empowerment Index (CEI) was used to measure the extent of women empowerment among beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries of LAS interventions. Women in the study areas were categorized at medium level of empowerment. Beneficiaries of LAS interventions were found to be more empowered relative to their counterparts. Ordinal logistic regression analysis results showed that involvement of women in LAS interventions, awareness of women legal rights, marital status and age at first marriage were the most determinant factors that influence women empowerment in Morogoro Rural and Kongwa district. Hence persistent sensitization of women about their rights is critical for reducing violence against them and ultimately achieving high levels of empowerment. Also, rigorous enforcement of existing laws and policies is required to discourage and ultimately eliminate the practice of early marriage. Contribution/ Originality: This study provides preliminary paradigm for the influence of Legal Aid Services interventions on women empowerment. The study also contributes in the existing literature that awareness of women legal rights had positive significant effect on women empowerment.