Vision, Mission and Values
Vision: We envision Afghanistan where human rights and humanitarian principles are respected and everyone who speaks out, delivers humanitarian aid, and defends and promotes human rights or challenges human rights abuses or impunity, by non-violent means, is free from intimidation and attacks.
Our mission is to empower, support and protect Afghan civil society, NGOs and human rights defenders in Afghanistan, including grassroots activists working in most remote and insecure areas, and to advocate for greater state protection and accountability for any abuses they may suffer as result of their work. In these efforts, will be working in close collaboration with HRDs and local NGOs to ensure their needs are properly addressed.
In providing protection and support to human rights defenders, civil society activists and Afghan NGOs, we are committed to the following values:
- Humanitarian and Human Rights: We believe in the provision of humanitarian assistance and access to the most vulnerable people wherever it is needed and in respecting and promoting human rights in peaceful and non-violent means.
- Professionalism: Our staff members are highly professional people committed to researching and developing, in collaboration with international and local experts, the most effective solutions for protection and risk mitigation for NGOs and HRDs.
- Impartiality and Independence: We work equally with and for all individuals/groups regardless of their race, religion, language, ethnicity, social status or political affiliation. We are not affiliated with any political, social, ethnic, etc group and our work will not contribute to promoting the interests/agendas of certain groups/individuals.
- Inclusion: We believe in building partnerships and collaboration networks with individuals, other organisations and communities in order to provide most effective protection and promote safe operational environment for HRDs, NGOs and their staff and beneficiaries in Afghanistan. We also believe and will aim to work in close collaboration with HRDs and other beneficiaries and will be using participatory methods in order to develop best safety and risk mitigation practices and tools corresponding to their needs.
- Impact: We are committed in achieving a real impact in the lives and work of the HRDs and thus will conduct regular evaluations and revision of our strategies and operations.
- Empowerment: With our work we aim to empower HRDs and NGOs (and thus avoid creating dependencies) to strengthen their capacity to mitigate risks and minimize the impact of the insecure and violent context on their operations, activities and personal safety.
- Respect: We believe in mutual respect between our partners and our beneficiaries and in respect of the needs of the HRDs and NGOs we are working to assist.
- Do no harm: Ensure that our activities do not harm our beneficiaries and act in a sensible manner to ensure that we do not create rivalry/conflicts among local HRDs or NGOs.
- Transparency and accountability: We will not only work for accountability for abuses against HRDs in Afghanistan, but will also ensure that we are accountable to our beneficiaries, partners and donors by providing regular reports about our activities.
SMRO’s overall objectives are to ensure that:
- Human rights defenders, including women’s rights activists, civil society, local NGOs and humanitarian organizations safely continue their work in Afghanistan;
- Increased cooperation between national and international organizations working to protect human rights defenders and to ensure safety for local NGOs in Afghanistan;
- The Afghan government and its international partners develop strategies and mechanisms and allocate resources to protect HRDs and local NGOs, and take steps to ensure accountability for abuses against HRDs and NGOs staff.
In support of these objectives, SRMO will carry out the following activities:*
- Establish a 24-hour Protection Hotline for urgent assistance to grassroots HRDs at risk as result of their work in Afghanistan – including temporary evacuation/shelter inside the country, legal assistance, trauma counseling and other financial assistance.
- Coordinate and cooperate with other local and international organizations working to protect HRDs and local NGOs in Afghanistan to provide the most effective assistance and avoid duplication.
- Put an early-warning system in place to monitor daily security, political and other developments affecting the work of HRDs and NGOs, and to provide timely risk mitigation advice and security plans in local languages.
- Conduct security surveillance for offices and homes of vulnerable HRDs and Afghan-led NGOs, carry out needs assessments, and develop risk mitigation and security plans.
- Provide needs assessment and security training for HRDs and Afghan-led NGOs.
- Prepare regular reports on the situation of HRDs in Afghanistan, based on information gathered through the Hotline.
- Work closely with the Afghanistan courts and law enforcement agencies to improve HRDs protection and accountability in cases of attack, intimidation and threats.
- Advocacy at national and international level to influence the Afghanistan government and its key international donors and partners, to adopt and implement policies, laws and funding programmes in order to ensure protection, justice and safe environment for human rights defenders in Afghanistan.
*These activities are subject to funding. SRMO is currently applying for funding and coordinating with partners in Afghanistan and internationally to set up an effective protection network.