Note from the Programme Officer

In Ethiopia, we are cooperating with the Centre for Human Rights (CHR) at Addis Ababa University to strengthen the capacity of the Centre to carry out its mission, including its three main functions of human rights education, research and outreach.  The cooperation forms part of a larger project at CHR, supported by Swedish Development Cooperation and Norwegian Aid, and which aims to ensure the promotion, protection, respect and fulfilment of human rights in Ethiopia.  There are three main goals; to increase the capacity of state agencies to respect human rights and the protection of especially vulnerable groups; to empower civil society to be active actors in the promotion and protection of human rights and; to realize the enhanced protection of the rights of marginalized and vulnerable groups.

In order to realize these goals, CHR and RWI are carrying out activities under three sub-projects. The first, multidisciplinary human rights teaching and training, offers support to the Centre’s planned new academic programmes and training courses. This is done through a series of workshops on methodology and pedagogy and a series of visiting professors and academic exchanges geared towards offering practical and interactive learning methods and techniques. One major activity under this component is the development of an MA Curriculum on Child Rights to be used by the Centre, and possibly disseminated to other higher academic institutions across the region.

The second sub-project, policy and practice collaboration and diffusion, seeks to offer opportunities for the staff and students of the Centre to exchange information and ideas, share experiences and good practices with other stakeholders. Through this we hope to encourage better collaboration and dialogue amongst different stakeholders for an improved understanding and remedying of human rights issues, including those that affect women. One of the main outputs of this component is the establishment of a human rights resource and documentation centre, with an online repository and catalogue of core human rights publications that will be available for use by the Centre and the rest of the University as well. RWI is also supporting an annual policy dialogue forum series, which this year focuses on women’s access to justice, and aiming to culminate in the development of a policy document on the same.

The third sub-project, learning, partnerships and capacity development, focuses on enhancing the internal capacity of the Centre including on project management and administration. Special focus is paid in this respect to gender mainstreaming and other forms of inclusion to positively impact the staff and students of the Centre and University at large. We also focus on targeted trainings for management and various programme staff to enhance their personal capacities and equip them further for the implementation of this project on important issues such as monitoring and evaluation, communication and reporting.

This cooperation also seeks to build the network and reach of CHR, and to this end will continually seize opportunities for interaction between the Centre and other relevant institutions and initiatives to enable learning as well as exchange of expertise and experience for mutual benefit. Such collaborations are at a regional and international level and range from academic exchanges with other higher education institutions to other bilateral cooperation with non-academic partners in Africa and beyond.