The Claude Leon Foundation



The Centre for Law and Society was established in 1994 (under the name Law, Race & Gender Research Unit) as a research and training unit at the University of Cape Town. The main project of CLS is the Rural Women’s Action Research Programme (RWAR). RWAR’s overarching objective is to bolster rural people’s ability to assert their rights and hold those in authority accountable. RWAR works in three main areas: land rights, traditional governance and the impact of mining on communities.
RWAR has been at the forefront of efforts to secure the land rights of people living in the former Bantustans, rights promised to them in the South African Constitution. RWAR played a major role in the campaign against the controversial Traditional Courts Bill, which eventually lapsed earlier this year. According to RWAR, the issue of security of land tenure is crucial to defending the democratic principles that drove the struggle against apartheid and that inform the Constitution.
The Foundation’ recently supported RWAR with a substantial 3-year grant to support RWAR’s research, litigation and advocacy initiatives to enforce constitutional rights to land, in the face of continued threats to these rights. RWAR’s Director, Dr. Aninka Claassens, noted that “this substantial grant puts our land work on a very firm footing at this crucial juncture of vulnerability for rural land rights.” 


© 2012 The Claude Leon Foundation. All rights Reserved.