A three-year-long European Union funded new project, ‘Supporting Human Rights Defenders Working for Women’s and Girls’ Rights in Bangladesh’ has launched in the city on 15 May 2018. It’s a first of its kind project to improve the professional ability of human rights defenders, including journalists, members of Civil Society Organisations and NGOS, and religious leaders, aims to protect and promote women’s girls’ rights in Bangladesh.
News Network in cooperation with Udayankur Seba Sangstha (USS) is implementing the project in country’s eight districts — Jessore, Satkhira, Nilphamari, Lalmonirhat, Rangpur, Dinajpur and Kurigram.
The launching ceremony of the project held this morning at CIRDAP Auditorium, Dhaka was chaired by Ms. Audrey Maillot, Team Leader-Governance of the Delegation of the European Union to Bangladesh. Mr. Shahiduzzaman, Editor of News Network presented the project and moderated the event.
Ms. Ayesha Khanum, President of Bangladesh Mohila Parisad and Mr. Shamsuddin Ahmed, a senior journalists and media development experts were the guest of honors. Ms. Erika Hasznos, First Secretary (Political) and Ms. Laila Jasmin Banu, Programme Manager-Governance and Human Rights of Delegation of the European Union to Bangladesh and Mr. Alauddin Ali, Executive Director of (USS) also present in the occasion. Audrey Maillot said, ‘News Network has been awarded the project under the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR). ….EIDHR is a European instrument that aims to promote democracy and human rights worldwide through support to civil society initiative’.
‘The project is expected to establish integrated protection systems for rural human rights defenders that will facilitate their access to service like psycho-social, medical and legal support’, she said.
The speakers of the occasion appreciate the project initiative. They said, country’s most women are somehow victim of violence. Their rights are often violated in various ways. Particularly in rural areas women’s accesses to justice and resources are limited. Besides, the human rights defenders are not well organised and less capacity to protect women rights. In such situation, the project will set an example and trend to encourage and improve the ability of human rights defenders to play their active role to promote women’s and girls’ rights, they hoped.
The project will continue till 2020.