Speaking Out: Afghan opinions on rights and responsilities | Afghanistan | Non Governmental Organization

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In early 2003 a consortium of twelve NGOs and human rights organizations formed to research and advocate on human rights issues in Afghanistan. The Consortium is unique for Afghanistan and other post conflict settings in its aims, its methods, its partners and its products. Speaking Out presents the findings of the Consortium's first piece of collaborative research. The aims of Speaking Out are to promote Afghan voices as an important part of current policy discussions
  Copyright ©2003 Human Rights Research and Advocacy Consortium (HRRAC).Printed in Pakistan.Writer:Dawn StallardResearchers:Timea Szabo, Dawn Stallard, Paul O’Brien and the staff of Consortium member organizationsData entry andanalysis:Timea Szabo, Sayed Homayun Fakri, Khadeja Ali Madady and Andrew PinneyLayout:Joyce MaxwellSpecial thanks to:Paul O’Brien, for providing the creative energy behind this project and to the board membersfor their continuing support and commitment to this project Thanks also to: Rahela Hashim and the staff of Habitat, Hamidullah Natiq and all the people involved inthis survey. Special thanks to the United States Institute of Peace for initial funding and support.Printing: The Army Press   The Human Rights Research and Advocacy Consor-tium is a group of 12 Afghan and international NGOs working in the fields of humanitarianrelief, reconstruction, human and women’srights, peace promotion, research, and advocacy. Itwas established in early 2003 to engage in proactiveresearch and advocacy on human rights issues over asustained period. This project is a unique initiative both for Afghanistanand for other countries emerging from conflict andinsecurity. It is distinctive in its aim, its methods, itspartners, and its products.ã The aim is to bring together a group of organizationsto systematically promote human rights throughongoing primary research, training and collectiveadvocacy.ã The method  attempts to capture the voices of ordinaryAfghans to promote a wide array of policy changesover a sustained period.ã The partners  are a consortium of six Afghan and sixinternational agencies. These partners, who equallyco-fund this project, include some of the mostexperienced and respected agencies working in Af-ghanistan today. The extensive programming expe-rience of Consortium members gives us unrivalledaccess to communities.ã The products  will offer an array of innovative resourc-es, designed to impact policy change, both in Afghan-istan and abroad. Focusing not just on what we say,but how we say it, our research capacity gives usaccess to a living database of photographs, film andindividual perspectives of hundreds of Afghans. Thoseresources will be captured in a variety of intellectuallyand visually compelling ways to influence debate onthe contemporary human rights concerns of ordinaryAfghans. The United States Institute for Peace (USIP) and eachConsortium member jointly funded this survey. About theConsortium  T Consortium Members Afghan Organizations Afghan Development AssociationAfghan Independent Human Rights CommissionAgency for Rehabilitation and Energy-conservationin AfghanistanAfghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit (advisoryorganization)Coordination of Humanitarian AssistanceCooperation for Peace and Unity International Organizations CARE InternationalMercy CorpsOckenden InternationalOxfam InternationalRights and DemocracySave the Children Federation, Inc. A FGHAN  O PINIONS   ON  R IGHTS   AND  R ESPONSIBILITIESi  ii S PEAKING  O UT Afghan Development Association(ADA)  was founded in 1990. Its missionis to eradicate poverty from Afghani-stan. ADA provides support to returningrefugees, internally displaced persons,poor families, women, the unemployedand the uneducated as well as to com-munity based organizations. The Afghan Independent Human RightsCommission (AIHRC) was based on theprovisions of the Bonn Agreement andwas established by a decree issued byMr. Karzai (Chairman of the Afghan In-terimAdministration) in June 2002. TheAIHRCis mandated to monitor the humanrights situation in Afghanistan and ini-tiate effective measures for the protectionand promotion of human rights. Agency for Rehabilitation & Energy-conservation in Afghanistan (AREA) is an Afghan non-governmental organi-zation established in 1994 operating (atpresent) in the sectors of communitydevelopment, alternative technolo-gy/environment protection, mine action,vocational/skill training and construction. The Afghanistan Research and Evalua-tion Unit (AREU) is an independentresearch institution that conducts andfacilitates quality, action-oriented re-search and analysis to informpolicy andimprove practice in order to increase theimpact of policies and programmes inAfghanistan. CARE is a confederation of 11 organiza-tions, working in more than 60 countriesaround the world (and in Afghanistansince the 1960s). CARE seeks a world of hope, tolerance and social justice, wherepoverty has been overcome and peoplelive in dignity and security. CARE strivesto be a global force and partner of choicewithin a worldwide movement dedicatedto ending poverty. Coordination of Humanitarian Assis-tance (CHA)  is an Afghan NGO. Its ob- jective is to help the development of Afghan society through cooperation inrehabilitation, reconstruction and sus-tainable social and economic advance-ment of communities. Co-operation for Peace and Unity(CPAU)  is an Afghan NGO working inthe areas of social peacebuilding andpromotion of human rights with the aimof achieving a viable peace in Afghani-stan. Mercy Corps  is a non-profit organizationthat exists to alleviate suffering, povertyand oppression by helping people buildsecure, productive and just communities.Mercy Corps operates in more than 25countries reaching 5 million people world-wide and has been working in Afghani-stan since 1986. Ockenden International works in part-nership with communities and vulnerablepeople affected by displacement. Byinvolving people in resolving their ownproblems, we work to build more confi-dent, stronger and self-reliant communi-ties. OxfamInternational  is a confederationof 14 organizations that is committedto invest its moral, personnel and finan-cial resources to the shared promotionof a worldwide initiative for economicand social justice. Rights and Democracy  (The InternationalCentre for Human Rights and DemocraticDevelopment) is an independent Canadianinstitution with an international mandate.It works in cooperation with civil societyand governments around the world topromote, advocate and defend the dem-ocratic and human rights set out in theInternational Bill of Human Rights. Save the Children (SC/USA)  is a leadinginternational nonprofit children’s relief and development organization workingin more than 40 countries, including theUnited States. Our mission is to createpositive and lasting change in the livesof children in need. C ONSORTIUM  M EMBERS
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