Workshops 2018

Defenders’ Days workshops cover different topics in parallel tracks. Please choose the topics that are best suited for you and/or your organisation. Some workshops are longer sessions and consist of two parts – 1(2) / 2(2), while other workshops consist of one part only – 1(1). Please consider this when putting together your individual programme, it is important that you do not plan to attend only the second part without first having attended part one. The workshops are held in English, English with Russian interpretation, or Russian – please note the specified language for the different workshops in the programme.

  • Campaigning with Limited Characters (1)

    In collaboration with Twitter, working from Twitter’s NGO Handbook, this workshop will cover everything from how to find your organisation’s voice on the platform to how nonprofits and NGOs have run successful campaigns that delivered important messages to specific audiences. The workshop will also cover trends, such as live-streaming, and how Twitter’s product developments can help you/your organisation to succeed on these new mediums. Finally, the workshop will look at Twitter’s ad products and how these can be leveraged to inexpensively boost campaign messages. The session is intended to be as discursive as possible, with participants invited to ask questions or make comments at any point.

    Trainer: Ronan Costello

  • Stress Management and Communication (1)

    Being called to informal talks at the police station is common for human rights defenders in certain countries, just as interrogations at border controls or checkpoints. Interrogation techniques can be tough and include psychological manipulation. Even the thought of being interrogated can be stressful to many of us. The most important protection is to be well prepared and trust your own abilities. What should I say? How do I behave? This training will focus on the most important ways to protect yourself and your information in an interrogation using active exercises rather than lecturing. Participants will get practical tools for interrogations and the opportunity to share their own experiences if they wish to.


  • Defenders’ Database (DiDi) (1-2)

    In 2016, Civil Rights Defenders initiated the Defenders’ Database (DiDi). DiDi is an IT-tool where human rights defenders (HRDs) can register, upload and analyse violations committed against HRDs. The system can be used both online and offline, and the records of the violations can be uploaded in different formats. The database is already working on two continents, and the information will soon be spread globally through a public web page which can be accessed by anyone. The tool is great for HRDs who are monitoring and reporting on human rights violations, and want to save and keep track of their information in a safe and encrypted storage. During the workshop, participants will work with the tool, upload different violations and analyse all the different possibilities that DiDi can open up for.

    Trainers: Erik Jennische, Alfredo Romero, Nadin Yamaui

  • Digital Security (1)

    In the digital sphere, those defending human rights are at risk from government surveillance and hacking, as well as cybercrime. This workshop will focus on daily digital security practices for human rights defenders, to improve the safety and security of both individuals and organisations. It will cover broad topics such as computers, mobile phones, and social media and highlight what risks there are for data at rest and data in transit. The session will also cover password management and protection.

    Trainers: Martin L. Fällman, Olle Segerdahl

  • Fact-Checking Social Media Sources (1-2)

    False information and fake photos or videos on social networks are becoming a problem for societies all over the world. It becomes harder and harder for journalists and human rights defenders to fact-check the content from social media sources. In this hands-on workshop, investigative journalist and media trainer Claus Hesseling will show strategies and tools which help to debunk false information on the internet. He will show how photos, videos and social media accounts can be manipulated by a range of actors in a short period of time in order to spread false facts or misleading information.

    Trainer: Claus Hesseling

  • Human Rights Lab (1-4)

    The human rights field is in a moment of transition that calls for new strategies, frames and collaborations. However, the recent spike in nationalist-populist governments and movements (and the anti-rights rhetoric and policies that they embrace), as well as the shrinking of space for civil society across the world, create new challenges for implementing that vision. The participants in the Human Rights Lab will go through a process of reflection, innovative thinking and exploration of proposals and action pathways that will support them and other human rights defenders in the difficult context they work in.

    Trainers: César Rodríguez Garavito, Krizna Gomez

  • Making Your Case – Step By Step To Better Fundraising (1)

    Everyone needs more funds and every day new fundraising tools pop up. In order to figure out which tools are the right ones for you, and how to use them to their full potential, you need a process that starts and ends with the potential donor. This training will explore the full donor journey and how understanding your donor can improve your fundraising process, no matter what the context. For each step, there will be interactive sessions where context specific challenges will be discussed before moving on. The training aims to provide the participants with the conceptual framework of a “know-your-donor” approach, as well as hands on tips and tricks relevant to their specific context.

    Trainers: Alexander Lange, Anna Magnard, Gabrielle Gunneberg, Mikael Ehrlington

  • Psychosocial Aspects Of Security (1-2)

    Your security situation is to a large extent influenced and formed by the psychosocial domain. If you or your staff are under constant stress or on the edge of burnout, it affects how, and what, decisions you make. When planning security measures, it is important that the psychosocial context, and the wellbeing of the staff, is considered in the risk assessment and the corresponding strategy. In this workshop, the trainer will discuss psychosocial aspects of security, as well as give hands-on advice on how it can be dealt with in an organisation. The first part of this workshop concentrates on issues/factors that affect activists’ personal wellbeing and what they personally can do to take care of themselves. The second part addresses specific measures that the organisations could introduce/develop to support activists’ wellbeing. This includes sharing already existing practices and experiences of those.

    Trainer: Jolanta Cihanovica

  • Strategic Use of the International Human Rights System (1-2)

    The UN human rights system offers a range of opportunities for human rights defenders to shine a light on the situation in their country and build pressure upon their states to change. This training will examine how to interact with the UN in a strategic manner. It focuses on interacting with Special Procedures and the Universal Periodic Review. Through presentations, exercises, group work and peer learning, participants will explore:

    • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the UN Special Procedures and the Universal Periodic Review? How can human rights defenders interact with these mechanisms?
    • What practical and strategic actions and tools can be used to ensure that this input has an impact?
    • Where can additional information and support be found and what concrete opportunities are coming up in 2018?
    • How is shadow/parallel reporting to these mechanisms built into a broader international advocacy strategy alongside other potential avenues such as the Human Rights Council or Treaty Bodies?

    Trainer: Ben Leather

  • Street Medic Skills (1-2)

    This introduction to Street Medic Skills workshop will combine lecture and hands-on exercises to teach several critical skills for protest medicine. We will cover various police repression tactics, discuss the injuries most likely to result from them, best practices for treatment and aftercare, tools and supplies necessary for a well-stocked first aid kit and proper use of them, and differentiating between several different conditions which seem similar but require different treatment. We will also briefly discuss some basic medic-specific operational security strategies, in order to ensure maximum safety for ourselves and our patients while we provide care.

    Trainer: Elle Armageddon

  • Video for Human Rights Clinic (1-2)

    This workshop will focus on how human rights defenders, marginalised communities and citizen witnesses can maximise the potential of video and related ICTs. The focus will be on how to think smartly about strategy, key concepts of how to shoot, produce or curate powerful footage and encourage others to do the same, how to distribute material so it creates a difference and amplifies their voice and power, as well as how to work safely and ethically to protect everyone involved. This will include how to maximise the potential of interaction, creation and advocacy between a growing number of citizen creators, movements and organised NGOs, as well as how to integrate footage shot by perpetrators.

    Trainer: Sam Gregory