Mould Them Young Africa Trust

Legal Information Literacy

MTY Championing Legal Literacy:

Legal information literacy is an essential tool of rights-based struggles. It seeks to empower ordinary citizens to know and understand the law and its impact so that they can engage and apply the law in a manner that improves the quality of their lives.

In actual fact, “information literacy forms the basis for lifelong learning. It is common to all disciplines, to all learning environments, and to all levels of education. It enables learners to master content and extend their investigations, become more self-directed, and assume greater control over their own learning. An information literate individual is able to understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally”.

The majority of the respondents said they were not exposed to legal issues when they were growing up. A classic example was given. “…because I did not know the importance of and value of my signature I paid dearly later on in life. I had to pay for my friend’s goods when he just disappeared without completing payments. The shop where he bought the items looked at the papers he signed and noted that I had signed for him as guarantor. When they failed to locate him they looked for me and I found myself paying for what I never used. So it’s important that some of these things are taught at a tender age appropriately”.

MTY Trust is of the opinion that, in order to ensure a fair and just society, law must be seen in a positive and supportive light not negative and restricting one, and this calls for introduction and or strengthening of legal education for everyone including children and the earlier done the better for the children. This is supported by other experts who argue that, “more broadly, teaching law to young children will provide them with a set of reasoning skills important in many areas of their lives. {Legal thinking}—which is not just ruleobedience— changes the way people approach difficult problems because it gives them tools to organize facts and values to arrive at a reasoned and actionable decision.”

Empowered children in Legal issues

  • To teach children age appropriate legal concepts and issues.

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