Posts Tagged ‘Sandra Petersen’

Major change at the Norwegian Human Rights Fund: from Sandra Petersen to Ingeborg Moa

November 1, 2021

After 11 years as the NHRF’s Executive Director Sandra Petersen was succeeded by Ingeborg Moa on 15 October 2021.

sandra
Ingeborg

Ingeborg Moa comes to the NHRF from the position as Director of Activism and Organisational Development at Amnesty Norway, and has nearly two decades of international experience working with local organizations and human rights defenders around the world. She has ten years of working experience with the Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA), as well as having worked for Norwegian Refugee Council and the UN. Geographically, she has extensive work experience from the Middle East and Southeast Asia, having spent a number of years in Palestine and Myanmar, as well as in Cambodia, Thailand, Iraq and Turkey. She has also been working on Syria. “My own experiences after working with human rights defenders for nearly 20 years is that for situations of injustice to change, it is the affected communities and people on the ground who need to organize, mobilize and take the lead in the struggle for their own rights. At the same time, international solidarity is necessary both in order to ensure support for practical initiatives on the ground, and not least in order to ensure that local struggles are supported by policy initiatives on a multilateral level”, she says.

Sandra Petersen will during the next four years undertake a PHD research at the Norwegian Center for Human Rights, University of Oslo with a focus on International Support to Human Rights Defenders. Apart from her research, Sandra Petersen will continue to work with the NHRF as a special advisor on human rights defenders.

Sandra Petersen first started working in the NHRF in 2009 leading the work on Pakistan and India. In 2010 she moved into the role of the executive director and has for more than a decade been leading the organisation towards growth; both with strengthening NHRF’s financial muscles to support frontline grassroots human rights organisations and defenders, and by increasing the organisational capacity from a two-staffed office in Oslo in 2010 to 25 people divided between the Oslo and Colombia offices – including team members and consultants in the US, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Thailand and Mexico. [see also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2020/04/21/norwegian-human-rights-fund-annual-report-2019/]

In an interview (see link below) Sandra give her views on what was achieved and her hopes for the future. And tells a bit more about her research project: The project is partly funded by the NHRF and by the Norwegian Research Council, and will be undertaken at the Norwegian Center for Human Rights at the Law Faculty, University of Oslo. I will seek collaboration with international universities and hopefully contribute to new partnerships. The primary goal of this research is to make an important contribution to future policy outcomes by providing empirical knowledge and comparative analysis of international and in particular Norway’s role in efforts on human rights defender’s protection. This will be shared within institutional structures here in Norway as well as internationally. The Ph.D. seeks to highlight best practices, lessons learned, as well as to try pointing to areas for improvement. Importantly, it aims to understand how human rights defenders in a selection of countries perceive international efforts to support them. Central to this analysis will be to understand possible new needs including effects of COVID-19 and the rapidly evolving technology and digital developments that can affect defenders’ safety and security. I think this is immensely important for all of us that wish to support human rights work and defenders’ role in these efforts. I deeply believe in a combined practitioner and academic approach to our work. Our actions should be well founded in knowledge.

https://nhrf.no/article/2021/announcement-new-executive-director-of-the-norwegian-human-rights-fund

https://nhrf.no/article/2021/a-new-chapter-interview-with-sandra-petersen-outgoing-executive-director

4 December 2020: seminar on Norwegian support to human rights defenders.

November 13, 2020

The Norwegian Center for Human Rights and the Norwegian Human Rights Fund invite you to a seminar addressing the Norwegian and international support to human rights defenders.

This seminar will focus on the role of human rights defenders in creating sustainable, peaceful and just societies, in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goal 16. It will look at the role and support of the Norwegian government, Oslo Municipality, the University of Oslo and Norwegian civil society in the protection of individuals and organisations working for human rights and peaceful and just societies. How can these institutions collectively – and individually – meet the needs of the day, both during and after COVID-19?

Program

13:00-13:10: Welcome by the Rector of the University of Oslo, Svein Stølen.

Welcome by the organizers: NHRF (Executive Director Sandra Petersen) and NCHR (Head of Department Gentian Zyberi).

Short introduction of the panels by the facilitators.

13:10-14:25: Panel 1: The current situation of Human Rights Defenders and protection work.

Key speakers:

Asha Kowtal, Dalit Human Rights Defender, India

Idil Eser, “Scholars at Risk” and former Director of Amnesty International Turkey [see: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2020/07/06/istanbul-court-jails-four-human-rights-defenders-on-terror-charges-seven-acquitted/]

Luciana Peri, Coordinator of Shelter Initiatives, ProtectDefenders.eu

John Peder Egenæs, Director of Amnesty International Norway

Moderator:Nora Sveaass, Professor Emeritus (University of Oslo), member of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT) and member of NHRF’s Advisory Board.

14:25 – 14:45: BREAK.

14:45 – 16:00: Panel 2: The role of international, national and local support to Human Rights Defenders

Short video messages from human rights defenders from different countries with recommendations to Norwegian and international actors supporting human rights defenders.

Key note: Mary Lawlor, UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders (digital participation)

Panel:

Ine Eriksen Søreide, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs

Raymond Johansen, Governing Mayor of Oslo

Mary Lawlor, UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders

Moderator: Sandra Petersen, Executive Director of the NHRF.

Concluding remarks by the NCHR.

The seminar will be streamed.

https://nhrf.no/event/norwegian-and-international-support-to-human-rights-defenders-under-and-after-covid-19

Norwegian Human Rights Fund Annual report 2019

April 21, 2020

From the Preface written John Peder Egenæs and Sandra Petersen of the Norwegian Human Rights Fund (NHRF):

…..2019 will stand out as an important year for the Norwegian Human Rights Fund (NHRF) in terms of growth and development. … We believe that the seeds of change planted by grantees every day will result in a robust and forceful defense for future generations. As this annual report demonstrates, our grantees and local human rights defenders are continuing to stand up and fight for a future of equality and dignity for all. For some, their work centers on ensuring that vulnerable workers have safe and dignified work environments, for others it’s providing psychosocial support for families of the disappeared and seeking justice for victims of torture and others are leading movements for gender equality. Establishing links, coordinating and collaborating on the local and national levels to create better working conditions for civil society and human rights defenders are crucial to strengthening the work and moving it forward. For this work, we support grantees who build networks and equip and empower defenders with the tools and skills needed for their work; who advocate for positive laws or the prevention of restrictive laws to protect or enable a thriving civil society; and others who provide relief, support and legal representation for human rights activists in cases of arbitrary arrests, detention or when they’re facing threats. Our grantees’ work is interlinked and reinforcing; success in one struggle impacts and can lead to success in another. Their work is driven by the needs on the ground and thus it comes in many forms, but the efforts to contribute to make positive and structural changes and the realization of human rights are shared by all. In 2019, the Norwegian government led an adoption of a new resolution on environmental human rights defenders – a critically important response during one of the most dangerous and even deadly points in recent history for human rights defenders, especially those who fight for natural resources, the rights of indigenous peoples and against environmentally detrimental megaprojects. …… Working together with our partners, we are able to see the reality of the dire situation for people on the front lines working for change, which leads us to seek to increase our support to and solidarity with their work. During 2019, the NHRF created strategic partnerships that increased the financial base for the years to come. We know this will be indispensable for local and front-line human rights defenders and for investing in the realization of human rights for the most vulnerable and marginalized. With these increased resources and with support from our partners, we will continue to invest and sow seeds that we believe will lead to long-term positive change…

 

Click to access NHRF-AR-2019-OL-20April-compressed-file.pdf