Call for applications for the creation of the South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders’

January 2nd, 2009
1. What is the network?– the South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders’ will link watch-dog human rights NGOs in the South Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia) and provide assistance to those human rights defenders who face challenges in their work.

2. Who will manage the network? –There will be one organization in each country, with Georgian side coordinating activities and Armenian and Azeri partners facilitating the project implementation. Following organizations are assigned for the countries: Armenia: Armenian Helsinki Association; Azerbaijan – Institute for Reporters Freedom and Safety; Georgia – Human Rights Centre. Norwegian partner – Human Rights House Foundation will assist with the facilitation of the implementation of the project together with the coordinating organizations.
3. Who is it funded by? – 80% of the project is funded by the European Commission. The rest is contributions from the coordinating organization and network members.
4. How can you benefit from being a member? – the network members will benefit from being a member in many ways. This will include following:
    * The network members will receive extensive trainings from the world’s leading experts on the topics like: personal and work related security, networking skills, universal and regional mechanisms for the protection of human rights, monitoring and documentation of the human rights violation etc. Trainings will be held in Georgia;
    * The network members will meet every six month to discuss human rights situation and situation with respect of human rights defenders in each country. They will have chance to identify and prioritize human rights related problems, generate concrete ideas and engage in a new cross border initiatives. Periodic meetings will give a chance to the network members to stay updated with respect of human rights situation in the region; Likely to the trainings, periodic meetings will be held in Georgia;
    * The members will be engaged in various public awareness activities that will be carried out during the project implementation. Public awareness campaign will give opportunity to the network members to publicize their services and attract attention of target groups as well as general public.
    * Being a network member will mean to be well informed, updated and relevant in action.
    * Network members will receive all services that are envisaged for the assistance of the persecuted human rights defenders. This includes: assistance in sheltering of the persecuted human rights defenders, providing them with legal psychological and medical assistance
5. Who can become a member? – the network is for non-governmental organizations. Those NGOs registered in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia can apply. Individuals are not eligible for a membership.
6. What are the selection criteria for the network members? – The partner organizations should consist of human rights organizations involved in a range of activities covering civil and political rights.
The organizations should be reputable, impartial, transparent, and with an ability and will of cooperation with other human rights organizations in the region. Link to and cooperation with other national and international network will be seen as an advantage.  The Network will especially call upon young organizations and NGOs from the regions to apply for membership.
7. What is expected from network members? The organizations interested in should be willing to regularly share and distribute information through the national coordinator of the project.  In addition they should be ready to and use resources and time on the training and to contribute to the periodic meetings.
8. How to apply: NGOs interested in membership should send a letter indicating reasons for applying and brief description of the organizations (aim/priorities of the organization, organizational structure, list of the implemented projects for the last two years and future plans. This shall not exceed five pages) no later than 15th of January to the following e-mail:

caucasus.network@gmail.com