Project information

Supporting Afro-Descendants- Latin America

To strengthen the capacities of local Afro-descendant organizations in achieving greater cohesion to effectively campaign on behalf of their communities & challenge the discrimination faced by Afro-descendants across the region and the non-respect of their political, social & economic rights.

36 months

Charity information: Minority Rights Group International (MRG)

Minority Rights Group International (MRG) logo
  • Need


    Widespread racism and discrimination prevent Afro-descendants not only from accessing basic services, employment and property but also from participating in the decision-making processes affecting their lives. Afro-descendant women are victims of multiple forms of discrimination, as a result of their gender and their belonging to an “invisible” community. Organizations representing Afro-descendant communities lack expertise and resources to become an effective force for positive changes.


    Through this project, Afro-descendant organizations in each programme country will gain valuable expertise and knowledge to defend the rights of their communities and challenge the discrimination faced by Afro-descendants. Lots of work will be undertaken around increasing the visibility of Afro-descendant communities. This will contribute to facilitating their interactions with national governments and regional/international institutions.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Train Afro-descendant organizations to effectively engage with local & national decision-makers.


    » National capacity building workshops for local organizations on ways to engage with the media, develop an advocacy campaign, & work with State Actors.
    » Preparation of shadow reports by our partners, enabling them to attend relevant fora to present their findings.

    75 activists trained for local organizations and human right activists to improve their capacities in areas such as advocacy or accessing the media.

    Aim 2

    Improve the protection of Afro-descendants’ rights in constitutions and key government laws.


    » National advocacy campaigns (1 in each country) targeted at local/national decision-makers, human rights institutions, or elected bodies.

    National advocacy campaigns (one per country).

    Aim 3

    Increase awareness of discrimination against Afro-descendants.


    » Produce reports (1 per each country) addressing a specific issue faced by Afro-descendants in the targeted countries.
    » Undertake legal work such as supporting victims of discrimination to challenge this through appropriate means.

    Reports (on the situation of Afro-descendants in each country) will be published and launched in the region.

    Aim 4

    Encourage partner NGOs to develop strategic alliances at national, regional & international levels.


    » National network development & advocacy meetings for partners to design & implement joint advocacy campaigns.
    » Three regional dialogues to bring together representatives of each partner NGO & Afro-descendant activists from other Latin American countries.

    National networks (one per country) of Afro-descendant organizations and one regional network set up.

  • Impact


    Partner organizations, as well as other organizations participating to the national training events, will greatly develop their capacity in the areas of research and production of (shadow) reports; advocacy (including designing, implementing and evaluating advocacy actions) & knowledge of regional/international standards and mechanisms of protection of their rights. These new skills and experiences will enable the organizations to carry on their work at a lesser cost in the future.


    Risks include fieldwork and community based activities jeopardised by civil/political unrest, outbreak of disease, or major environment disaster. However, MRG has a contingency plan that would be put into place and would encompass this project.


    Reporting to donors will take place on an annual basis, in conjunction with our main donor’s reporting guidelines.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £284,470

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      Amount Heading Description
      £169,047 Human resources UK and local staff
      £62,684 Regional networking meetings meetings in each of the targeted countries
      £30,824 Report publications research, translation, printing, dissemination
      £21,915 Advocacy national advocacy campaigns in each of the targeted countries
  • Background


    Latin America: Ecuador, Brazil, Peru, and Colombia.


    Afro-descendants, i.e. the descendants of the African slaves who were brought to Latin American countries in the 16th and 17th centuries to work in the local cotton fields and sugar cane plantations. It is estimated that they make around a third of the total population but represent more than 50% of its poor. This action will also benefit a number of Afro-descendant organizations from all the programme countries.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    There is no other NGO with MRG’s broad mandate on minority issues, nor its high reputation among minority communities, governments and UN human rights bodies. Between 2005 & 2007, MRG engaged in a joint initiative with Afro-descendant organizations & undertook a mapping exercise of the needs and constraints of Afro-descendant communities and the organizations representing them. We now have the necessary knowledge and contacts to effectively address minority issues in the area.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    CEDET, Peru

    The parther will be responsible for implementing the planned in-country activities.

    Fundacion Afro-Americana XXI, Ecuador

    The parther will be responsible for implementing the planned in-country activities.

    Asociacion Negra Margarita, Peru

    The parther will be responsible for implementing the planned in-country activities.

    Criola, Brazil

    The parther will be responsible for implementing the planned in-country activities.