The East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project (EHAHRDP)

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Contact Information



The East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project (EHAHRDP) brings together more than 65 non-governmental organization that seek to strengthen the work of human rights defenders by reducing their vulnerability to the risk of persecution and by enhancing their capacity to effectively defend human rights.

Areas of Work

Protection of defenders.

Urgent Responses Offered

Urgent appeals, international solidarity and communication strategies

EHAHRDP produces timely appeals when defenders are under attack. It has also written letters to national authorities concerning violations of defenders’ rights. Its appeals (public statements) can be found on the EHAHRDP website.

Advocacy with regional and international mechanisms

EHAHRDP regularly submits urgent appeals to the UN SR and other Rapporteurs depending on the nature of the violation. They also work with:

    • The Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders in Africa;
    • EU embassies and other institutions. It has recently engaged with EU missions in different countries to have Local Implementation Strategies for EU Guidelines.

Awards and fellowships

EHAHRDP works in partnership with universities in Uganda, Kenya, USA and England to place defenders at risk in their academic programs and allow them to specialize in a specific area relevant to their work.

Legal assistance and trial observation

EHAHRDP provides legal advice and support to defenders that require legal interventions.

EHAHRDP has trial observation missions that are carried out in cases involving defenders working in the East and Horn of Africa sub region to ensure adherence to international fair trial guarantees

Medical assistance, stress management and psychosocial counseling

EHAHRDP: works with network members, the Independent Medico-Legal Unit in Kenya and the Center for the Victims of Torture in Uganda, to provide assistance to defenders and WHRDs in need of trauma counseling. In some cases, private counselors are retained to extend the necessary support.

Protective accompaniment; solidarity and monitoring visits

EHAHRDP undertakes solidarity and monitoring visits with defenders at risk as a way to highlight the situation the defender is facing, raising the political cost of a potential attack and most importantly ensuring that the defender is aware of the support and goodwill from other activists.

Temporary relocation and emergency hotline

EHAHRDP provides relocation assistance to defenders and WHRDs from the East and Horn of Africa. It places defenders with partner organizations in countries in the sub region to ensure that defenders can continue to work during their temporary relocation. It also provides financial assistance for housing and other basic requirements. Out of country relocation is only carried out as last resort.

EHAHRDP has a 24-hour emergency number available for defenders at risk: (+256)783027611

Grants and relief programs

    • EHAHRDP supports defenders with grants to meet the daily costs of living, relocate to areas of safety and support their families.
    • They provide grants for security systems and equipment replacement e.g laptops and cameras to ensure that they continue with their human rights work.
    • They have a resource center for activists in Uganda to use in their work.

Digital Security

Over the past three years EHAHRDP has developed a joint program with Protection International.

      • The joint project engages in security management training for HRDs including digital security.
      • The project has led to the building of in house expertise to support HRDs in security management and digital security.
      • The project now also has protection desks in Kenya and Uganda.

Geographic Focus

East and Horn of Africa. EHAHRDP focuses on Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia (together with Somaliland), Sudan (together with South Sudan), Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi.


The website is available in English. Communication in French is available.