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The Lawyers' Circle is a peer network of high profile and up and coming QCs, barristers and solicitors from a broad range of practices, including large and small city firms, accountants and in-house legal teams.

 They focus on helping African women realise their rights by supporting Oxfam's 'Raising Her Voice' programme (RHV) and the African Women's Rights protocol.


Donate to Oxfam's Raising Her Voice programme

Please help The Lawyers' Circle and Oxfam raise £50,000 in support of the 'Raising Her Voice' programme in Tanzania and Uganda.

In June 2011, The Lawyers’ Circle visited Raising Her Voice projects in Tanzania and Uganda to find out more about their work and the extent to which the Protocol has been implemented. On the trip were Melanie Hall QC, Miriam Gonzalez, Helen Mountfield QC, Lisa Marks, Clariss O'Callaghan, Hilary Waters and Karis McLarty.

More about the Lawyer's Circle

Find out about the Lawyers' Circle, the African Woman's protocol and news of the recent fact-finding trips to Tanzania and Uganda in our new interactive magazine.


Find out more

Lawyers' Circle highlights

The Lawyers' Circle has hosted a variety of fundraising and advocacy events.


Raising Her Voice: An overview

Find out more about the Raising Her Voice programme (PDF)

Get in touch

Contact Kimberly Haynes by telephone on 01865 472431 or by email at to find out more about our plans and how you can get involved.


"The African Women's Rights Protocol contains some wonderful things: dealing, for example, with domestic violence, trafficking, female genital mutilation, child brides, girl soldiers, recognising the economic value of work in the home, protecting the reproductive rights of all women, and the rights of widows and elderly women. It was developed to address the specific and complex obstacles to equality faced by women in Africa, but in doing so it has identified many problems which are not unique to the women of Africa, and are regularly encountered in our own society. Perhaps we too need a women's rights protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights?"

Baroness Brenda Hale, Justice of the Supreme Court

What next?

Enthused by our success to date and near achievement of our goals, The Lawyers' Circle is currently finalising legal, advocacy, and fundraising plans for the coming months. Key areas of focus include:

  • The launch of a comprehensive review of gender legislation in countries where the Protocol has been ratified and assessment of compliance with the Protocol.
  • Continuing to explore a possible collaboration with the International Associations of Women Judges to train African women judges on the Protocol.
  • Assessing RHV opportunities, and planning the next phase of fundraising events.

Steering group

With very special thanks to steering group members Miriam Gonzalez, Melanie Hall QC, Deirdre Trapp, Kathy Hughes, Lisa Marks, Liisa Lahti, Jennifer Mann, Lucy Chuo, Karis McLarty, Penny Nagel, Jessica Simor, Helen Mountfield QC and Hilary Waters.

1.3 billion people live in poverty - more than two-thirds are women

Domestic violence is the single biggest cause of injury and death to women worldwide

Women work two-thirds of the world's working hours, yet earn only 10% of the world's income

Two-thirds of the 72 million children denied a school education are girls

Every minute, a women with no medical care dies in pregnancy or childbirth

Women hold only 14% of the world's parliamentary seats