Comprehensive protection

In Protection International, we know from our experience that there is no “silver bullet" when it comes to protecting human rights defenders (HRDs). This is because activists, their organisations and communities are immersed in their own unique cultural, social and political contexts. Moreover, risks evolve and change over time. Therefore, any attempts to formulate “one-size-fits-all” security plans or “box-ticking” exercises that can be applied in any situation are doomed to failure.

Support to HRDs cannot be reduced to a single security training workshop, which tend to compartmentalise security in its physical, digital and psycho-social dimensions, and to prescribe simplified protective measures. Equally important is to realise that threats to HRDs’ security do not fall neatly into one of the categories.

Protection International’s interventions aim to bring about the necessary attitudinal and organisational changes toward security and protection, in order to install long-lasting self-protection strategies and practices.This is consistent with a process approach based on tailored accompaniment and comprehensive protection, recognising and building on existing security practices while appreciating the complexity of organisations, communities and their struggles. Security always has personal, situational and emotional spheres. Based on this understanding, we avoid approaching it in separate parcels, creating instead time and spaces to reflect, analyse and come up with security solutions that are agreed both by the leadership and by the organisation staff and community members.

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