Rights Based Approach

Chapter four of the constitution of the republic of Uganda emphasizes the protection and formation of fundamental and other Human Rights and freedoms. It stresses that fundamental rights and freedoms of the individual are inherent and not granted by the state. The rights and freedoms of the individual and groups enshrined in this chapter shall be respected, upheld and promoted by all organs and agencies of Government and by all persons. On civil rights and activities (article 38) it is emphasized that every Ugandan citizen has the right to participate in the affairs of government, individually or through his or her representatives in accordance with the law. And every Ugandan has a right to participate in peaceful activities to influence the policies of government through civic organizations.

The above declarations provide fertile ground for Raising Africa to use the Rights Based Approach (RBA) in our work. There are two key points which distinguish RBA from other approaches. One is the focus on rights, which all people have by virtue of being human and which cannot be taken away. Furthermore and crucially, human rights are inseparable from the set of responsibilities which they create with this dual moral-legal force. RBA thus links poverty reduction to questions of obligation, rather than welfare or charity, empowers people to demand justice as a right, and gives communities a moral basis from which to claim assistance when needed from the relevant duty bearers (UN, 2003).  

Raising Africa follows the following principles of RBA:

  • Analyzing and addressing the root causes of poverty and not just the symptoms
  • Supporting clients (rights-holders) as the primary actors for change
  • The use of legal frameworks, agreements and systems (international and national) to assert and fulfill the relevant rights and entitlements

Strategic Objective 1: Raising Africa will contribute to the reduction of the incidence of poverty by tackling the root causes of poverty.

Strategic Interventions

  • Review Raising Africa’s experiences in RBA and analyze the implications of taking RBA forward.
  • Internalize Raising Africa’s RBA framework and adapt tools and processes of applying RBA and apply them in all future programmes or projects.
  • Develop strategic alliances with a variety of actors at various levels in order to work jointly in supporting rights holders in the fulfillment of their rights.
  • Carry out a full analysis of the roles of duty bearers and potential allies at various levels to ensure that Raising Africa’s role in relation to each of them is clearly defined so that there is no confusion of over which agencies are partners, which are allies and which are advocacy targets
  • Support duty bearers in order to enable them to fulfill their roles and responsibilities