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The Centre for Human Rights, Faculty of Law, University of Pretoria, with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, cordially invites you to apply for its Capacity Building Workshop on Strategic Litigation and Advocacy for human rights defenders working on the promotion and protection of the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and other non-binary and gender-nonconforming persons in Africa. 

Date: 22 - 26 August 2022 
Time: 09:00 to 16:00 (from Monday to Friday) SAST 
Venue: Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa 
Enquiries: Nathan Milanzi (Tel: +27 (12) 420 5449 /nathan.milanzi@up.ac.za

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Deadline for applications : 22 April 2022 

About 

The LGBTIQ+ Human Rights Defenders in Africa Capacity Building Workshop is an annual event aimed at empowering selected LGBTIQ+ human rights defenders in Africa on designing and conducting strategic litigation and advocacy. The seventh edition of the workshop will be held from 22 to 26 August 2022 at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria in South Africa. 

Background 

Resolution 275 of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights calls on state parties to curb violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity. However,  despite this, violence and discrimination targeted for these groups continue to exist. Similarly, human rights defenders and activists working on LGBTIQ+ issues continue to face different threats concerning their work. 

Against this background, the Centre for Human Rights will be conducting a five-day capacity building workshop for LGBTIQ+ human rights defenders in Africa. The workshop is designed to assist activists in Africa to effectively promote and protect LGBTIQ+ rights through domestic, regional, and international level strategic litigation and advocacy using African-specific approaches. 

The workshop is targeted at experienced activists in Africa who want to build on their capacity, develop their skills, and network with activists from other parts of Africa. It will include a combination of expert presentations delivered by Centre for Human Rights staff as well as other experienced human rights defenders on advocacy and litigation opportunities. It will also include interactive advocacy and litigation exercises at regional levels. 

The workshop seeks to strengthen the capacity of civil society organisations in Africa so that they can better pursue legal challenges and advocate on behalf of LGBTIQ+ individuals at risk of or who have suffered serious violations of human rights under domestic African laws. The workshop also aims to have participants think through and develop autochthonous, African-specific ways of advocacy and strategic litigation, and learn from each other about the challenges of filing cases at domestic courts. 

Participants 

The workshop sessions will bring together activists, scholars, practitioners, advocates for law reform, and notable LGBTIQ+ individuals from across Africa to address the issues of strategic advocacy and litigation. 

This workshop is directed at experienced human rights defenders in non-governmental organisations, with existing advocacy experience at the national level and some prior knowledge of the international human rights system. Participants should commit to attending all five days of the workshop. Certificates of participation will be issued by the Centre for Human Rights for the successful completion of the workshop. 

Funding 

Limited funding for international travel, travel within South Africa, and accommodation is available to support a few participants who will be selected for the workshop. Successful applicants will be notified of their selection by 30 April 2022. Due to limited funding, selected applicants will be required to take care of costs for visas and COVID-19 tests/vaccinations in their respective countries, as well as airport transfer costs at their ports of departure. Self-funding participants are encouraged to apply as well.