14ymedio, Luz Escobar, Havana, November 19, 2019 — The organization Justice and Peace has announced a program that will provide a stay of three months in a city in the Netherlands for human rights defenders who find themselves in a dangerous situation. Candidates can send their applications for this program, Shelter City, until November 29.
To participate, candidates must fill out an online application and the organization will evaluate if they fulfill the requirements, among them the defense of human rights from a nonviolent focus, being threatened or pressured for their work, being willing to talk about their experience and express themselves in English. Additionally, they must be prepared to travel in March 2020 to the Netherlands, have a passport and visa, not be subject to decisive judicial measures, and commit to returning after three months and not be accompanied.
Justice and Peace can help cover the costs for the issuance of passports and/or visas, but does not guarantee they will be obtained. Also, those selected will receive a monthly economic contribution to cover the expenses of participants, their lodging, medical insurance, and airfare. They will also offer personalized accompaniment to the participant during the stay in the Netherlands.
The program allows participants to rest, continue their work in safe conditions, attend training workshops, expand their support network, and share information on the human rights situation in their country. Other activities are meetings with NGOs and public authorities, conferences, free and leisure time or treatment for problems related to work, in addition to “activities to raise awareness on human rights” for the public of the Netherlands.
For that, “they will participate in local initiatives organized by the municipality and the host organization,” says the announcement. At the end of the program, it is expected that participants will return with new tools and energy to continue their work in their country of origin.
The program is open to activists, journalists, academics, writers, artists, lawyers, defenders of civil and political rights, independent media professionals, members of civil society, and other persons who work peacefully to promote human rights and democracy in the world.
Translated by: Sheilagh Herrera
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