Maria Beltran-Figueroa. (2010). Human Rights Based Approach. Indianapolis by reyty1

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									Negotiating Transcultural Lives:
Developing Culturally Uplifting and Human Rights-Based Projects for Refugees

Indigenous and Minority Leaders from Southern Philippines
International Training Center
Northern Illinois University
12-13 June 2010

                                                                    Refugee Resource
                                                                    &Research Institute
                                                                    of Indiana, Inc.

1.   Introduce Human Rights-Based Approach to program and project development;
2.   Appreciate the impact and interconnectedness of culture, gender and human rights in
     program and project development;
3.   Identify and analyze the tensions between human rights and cultural norms and
4.   Discuss alternative strategies;
5.   Familiarize with culturally sensitive approaches to program and project development;
6.   Enhance program delivery;
7.   Come up with a specific program or project using what was learned in the workshop
Key Concepts

      Human Rights Based Approach to Programming

      A human rights-based approach to programming is a conceptual framework and
      methodological tool for ensuring that human rights principles are reflected in
      policies and national development frameworks. Human rights are the minimum
      standards that people require to live in freedom and dignity. They are based on the
      principles of universality, indivisibility, interdependence, equality and non-
      It is an approach where human rights determine relationship between rights holders
      and duty bearers and their obligations, and works towards strengthening the
      capacities of rights-holders to make their claims and of duty bearers to meet their
      obligations. (Developed at the Inter-Agency Workshop on a human rights-based approach in the context of
      UN reform, 3 to 5 May 2003.)
Key concepts..

       Systematic Use of Human Rights-Based Programming

       Through the systematic use of human rights-based programming,
       Refugee Resource seeks to empower people to exercise their rights and to
       live free from violence. It does this by supporting programs aimed at giving
       all refugees, men, women and young people (‘rights holders’) the
       information, life skills and education they need to claim and enjoy their
Key Concepts…

      It also contributes to capacity-building among public officials, teachers,
      health-care workers and others who have a responsibility to fulfill these
      rights (‘duty bearers’).In addition, Refugee Resource aims to strengthen
      civil society organizations, which often serve as intermediaries between
      the government and individuals, and promotes mechanisms by which duty
      bearers can be held accountable.
 Key Terms

1. Stakeholders - include, inter alia, NGOs, national human rights institutions, human rights
defenders, academic institutions and research institutes, regional organizations, as well as
civil society representatives. (Resolution 5/1 Human Rights Council)

2. Right Holders-every human being is a right-holder. Specific right holders are identified
depending on the nature of the program. Ex. Women and girls are the rights holders. Education is a
basic human right and therefore it is the obligation of states to provide a school environment which
ensures equal access to girls and boys. States must not only guarantee that women and girls are safe in
schools, but also establish facilities, curricula and strategies that adapt to their specific needs and rights,
and will thus keep them in school. (Human Rights: Promoting Gender Equality In and Through Education)
Key Terms.. Cont’d

3. Duty Bearers
State -As parties to human rights treaties, states have assumed the obligation to respect,
protect and fulfill the rights of every man, woman and child.
International Community
Public Officials
NGOs and NGO workers and others who have a responsibility to fulfill, uphold and
protect these rights

4. Trancultural –merging and converging cultures
Rationale for Human Rights Based Approach to Program Development

1.    Reduces gaps in equity and equality.
2.    Relies on broad participation.
3.    Targets marginalized or excluded groups
4.    Empowers both duty bearers and rights holders
5.    Addresses the root causes of human rights violations
6.    Is concerned with budget allocations and public accountability
7.    Promotes gender equality
8.    Is culturally sensitive
9.    Contributes to a climate conducive to Human Rights
10.   Keeps abreast of International Standards
11.   Ensures sustainability
Cultural Sensitivity in Designing and Implementing Projects

“In our development efforts in poor communities, we need to be able to
    work with people at their own level and to find common ground.
    We may notbelieve in what they do, we may not agree with them,
    but we need to have the compassion and thecommitment to
    understand them and to support them as they translate universal
    principles into their own codes, messages and ways of doing things.
    Human rights is our frame of reference. And we use culturally
    sensitive approaches to promote human rights in ways that people
    can identify with and can internalize in the context of their own

    Thoraya Obaid Executive Director, UNFPA
Cultural sensitivity.. Cont’d

1.    Invest time in knowing the culture in which you are operating.
2.    Hear what the community has to say.
3.    Demonstrate respect.
4.    Show patience.
5.    Gain the support of local power structures.
6.    Be inclusive.
7.    Provide solid evidence.
8.    Rely on the objectivity of science.
9.    Avoid value judgements.
10.   Use language sensitively.
11.   Work through local allies.
12.   Assume the role of facilitator.
Cultural Sensitivity… cont’d

13.   Honor commitments.
14.   Know your adversaries.
15.   Find common ground.
16.   Accentuate the positive.
17.   Use advocacy to effect change.
18.   Create opportunities for women.
19.   Build community capacity.
20.   Reach out through popular culture.
21.   Let people do what they do best.
22.   Nurture partnerships.
23.   Celebrate achievements.
24.   Never give up.
Karen Farm Project

                                                                      The Karen is one of largest ethnic
                                                                      group in Burma.

                                                                      Predominantly rice farmers, they live
                                                                      in the eastern Lower Burma, along
                                                                      the Thai border.

                                                                       Throughout their existence they
                                                                      have based their lives on the
                                                                      cultivation of rice paddies, and their
                                                                      villages are moved from one location
                                                                      to another in order to harvest what is
                                                                      the most important part of their diet.

The UN Covenant on Civil and Political Rights                         While many are rice farmers, those
Part 1, Article 1                                                     in the delta use a different technique
All peoples have the right of self-determination. By virtue of that   in planting vegetables and other
right they freely determine their political status and freely         different crops.
pursue their economic, social and cultural development.
Community Background

    Indianapolis received the first wave of Karen arrivals in 2005. Many more have been resettled
    since. There are now over 300 families living in the Southside, Northside and the Speedway

    The Karen’s persecution started after WWII when after fighting the Japanese, the occupying
    British government denied them autonomy which was promised to them.

    Displacement has been widespread in the Karen areas because of war and human rights abuses
    since the Burmese government launched offensives against the ethnic minorities in the 70’s.
    Villagers have not only fled immediately after the Burmese attacks but they also had to leave
    their houses because of forcible relocation, forced labor, arbitrary taxation and other human
    rights violations.
Objectives of the Farm Project

    To provide the Karen community in
    Indianapolis land(s) where they can
    farm/garden. We believe that their
    resettlement in the city would be less
    alienating and less traumatic if they
    can continue to farm.

    To allow the Karen to continue to
    practice their farming tradition while
    navigating the new systems in a new

    To provide the Karen an opportunity
    to market their produce that reflects
    their history and their culture.

                                                          To provide the Karen an opportunity
                                                          to market their produce that reflects
                                                          their history and their culture.

                                                          To contribute to the slow food
                                                          movement where local consumers
                                                          would be made aware where their
                                                          food comes from. This is also an
                                                          opportunity for local farmers, other
                                                          food growers and consumers to learn
   Refugees must receive the most favourable              and appreciate other vegetables and
   treatment provided to nationals of a foreign           other farming methods.
   country with regard to the following rights:

   . The right to belong to trade unions.
   . The right to belong to other non-political
     nonprofit organisations.
   . The right to engage in wage-earning employment
                               -1951 Refugee Convention

    To contribute to the slow food movement where local consumers would be made
    aware where their food comes from. This is also an opportunity for local farmers,
    other food growers and consumers to learn and appreciate other vegetables and
    other farming methods.

    To assist the Karen to generate income from farming until this project becomes a
    sustainable source of their livelihood.

                          Please contact:
                          Refugee Resource and Research Institute
                          2012 Beach Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46240
                          (317) 332-2658

                          Waterman Farm Market
                          7010 E. Raymond St. Indianapolis
                          IN 46239 Phone: 317-357-2989
Refugee Resource would like to thank:

1.    Waterman Family, Bruce and Carol, Lisa and Zeus and their staff for giving the
      Karen an opportunity and allowing them to get reconnected to their agrarian
2.    The Central Indiana Taxi Operators Association for providing transportation to
      the Karen refugees.
3.    Green Tree Apartment Management for allowing the Karen to put up a farmers’
      market in the apartment complex.
4.    Stevi Holtz of the Indianapolis City Market for giving them a place at the City
      Market to sell their produce
5.    David Wu of the Mayor’s Office for connecting the project to other organizations
      and to the City Market
6.    The local community for welcoming all refugees
7.    USDA for a very generous grant through their Farmers Marketing Promotion

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