Kick-off workshop on psychosocial support for Human Rights defenders on August 5-6 in Mexico


How do Human Rights organisations handle the fact that their members are threatened or that their offices become the target of attacks? Next to possible physical harm, the emotional impact of such a situation on Human Rights defenders and their work can be considerable.

An exchange, spread-out over the course of five months, between two representatives each of three Human Rights organisations from Honduras, Colombia and Mexico, respectively, focuses on the question of how organisations can better deal with the psychosocial impacts of such threats. On August 5th and 6th, the kick-off workshop took place close to Mexico City. It serves as the basis for two subsequent workshops. Central to the workshop were a reflection process on the threat, its background, and how it is being perceived and dealt with by the participants. Subsequently, it was focused on the development of a personal vision of the desired situation with regard to dealing with threat on a psychosocial level as well as the development of a work plan in order to initiate a process of integrative management of the impacts of threats and risks in each organisation. The Berghof Foundation organises the workshops and supports the dialogue and reflexion processes within the meetings both with regard to content and methodology.