Kazakhstan 2021

International Republican Institute (IRI)

Trainings & Exchanges for the New Generation of Rights Initiatives (TENGRI)


Public Summary: To strengthen Kazakhstan s civil society and empower activists from across Central Asia, the Institute will conduct a series of trainings and exchanges aimed at increasing collaboration between organizations, polishing their internal operations, and providing them with advocacy skills and the benefits of lessons learned elsewhere in the region. These sessions will be bolstered by targeted opinion research, providing civil society with critical information it can use to work with the public.

CA Analysis & Research Center Limited

Defending Human Rights
Public Summary: To support Kazakhstani citizens in defending their civil, political, and human rights and to raise awareness about government violation of these rights. The organization will maintain a website with practical guidance and legal advice for activists and other citizens threatened by rights violations. The team also will monitor ongoing human rights violations in Kazakhstan and share them on the site. All information will be available in Russian and Kazakh. The organization’s director is a longtime Kazakhstani political activist who employs a six-person team with expertise in legal and human rights issues.

Freedom of Information

Fostering an Active and Engaged Youth
Public Summary: To promote civic engagement among youth in Kazakhstan. The organization will support a Russian and Kazakh language multimedia website that discusses civil society, human rights, political rights, and good governance. The site will feature the work of activists and civil society organizations. It will provide explanatory content, including historical and legal background, around current events in approachable language. Content will be published directly to social media and will provide clear paths to activism on issues critical to its readership. This organization is led by a founding member of one of Kazakhstan’s leading democracy movements and an experienced media executive.

Public Foundation “Ar Rukh Khak”

Human Rights Advocacy
Public Summary: To defend human rights in Kazakhstan. The organization will provide legal support and advocacy for political prisoners and other people subject to political repression. The organization also will advocate for parliament to pursue policy reforms to protect human rights, promote the rule of law, and encourage legislators to respond to the concerns of civil society and citizens. The organization was founded in Almaty in 1999, and serves as the coordinator of a wider, nine-member civil society working group on political prisoners.

Kazakhstan International Bureau of Human Rights and Rule of Law

Defending Freedom of Peaceful Assembly
Public Summary: To promote the freedom of peaceful assembly in Kazakhstan. The organization will provide legal aid, develop a methodology for monitoring violations of freedom of peaceful assembly, and conduct a training program in Kazakh and Russian for civic activists and regional governmental representatives on the freedom of peaceful assembly. It will pursue strategic litigation and analyze procedures and legislation on the freedom of peaceful assembly to develop recommendations for revising legislation so that it conforms to international standards. Founded in 1993, the organization is a well-established human rights organization with experience in this field

Youth Information Service of Kazakhstan

School of Human Rights
Public Summary: To promote civic engagement and activism among youth in the regions of Kazakhstan. The organization will conduct a series of introductory and advanced seminars for activists in six regions of Kazakhstan on the basics of human rights, civic activism, and national and international human rights legislation. It will award the best graduates of its program with stipends to conduct civic initiatives. Two graduates will receive internships and mentorship in prominent civil society organizations. Founded in 2000, the organization has become a foundational organizer, convener, and educator for Kazakhstan’s growing civil society.


Promoting Investigative Journalism
Public Summary: To promote quality investigative journalism in Kazakhstan. The organization will research corruption in the tender system, state-owned companies, quasi-state organizations, and the judicial system. It will publish the results in Russian language articles, multimedia, and video to its popular Telegram and Instagram pages. Content will be packaged in understandable language so that a mass audience can understand the mechanisms behind large-scale public corruption. The founder is an experienced investigative journalist who established the organization to conduct high-quality investigative journalism independent of political interference and to use social media to bring investigative journalism to a mass audience

Public Foundation “North Kazakhstan Legal Media Center”

Promoting Internet Freedom
Public Summary: To encourage a free and secure Internet in Kazakhstan. The organization will contest illegal Internet blockages, monitor digital rights violations, advocate for better Internet legislation. It will consult with activists about digital rights violations. It will continue its activities educating the population and training activists about digital rights and digital security.

TOO “Vlast Media Group”

Strengthening Independent Media
Public Summary: To strengthen credible, relevant independent media in Kazakhstan. The organization will produce and publish breaking news stories, in-depth analysis, investigative reporting, podcasts, and documentaries, as well as other content. The project team will mentor a group of regional journalists to produce and publish coverage of issues in their home communities. Content will be in Russian and Kazakh. The project aims to create a shared media platform that is relevant and interesting to the Kazakhstani population.

Public Union “Abyroi”

Raising Human Rights Awareness
Public Summary: The organization will monitor human rights conditions in Western Kazakhstan. It will work with lawyers, human rights defenders, and journalists to conduct an advocacy campaign for human rights violations. The organization will also publish two feature-length documentary films on key human rights issues. Both the materials produced as part of the advocacy campaign and the documentary films will be published to the organization’s website, social media pages, and YouTube.

Public fund «Wings of Liberty»

Expanding Human Rights Education
Public Summary: To establish a network of Russian and Kazakh speaking human rights trainers throughout Kazakhstan. The organization will conduct human rights lectures in five target cities to identify potential trainers. It will then conduct a series of trainings and workshops to educate them. Before completion of the project, the organization will help each of the new trainers conduct human rights trainings in their own cities

International Foundation for Protection of Freedom of Speech “Adil Soz”

Defending Freedom of Speech and the Media
Public Summary: To promote and protect freedom of expression in Kazakhstan. The organization will combat attempts by the government and private sector actors to initiate administrative, criminal, and civil cases to suppress the speech of journalists, bloggers, and other citizens. In addition to providing legal consultations and pursuing strategic litigation, the project will monitor violations and report them to international and domestic partners. The organization also will advise the government on legislative reforms to protect freedom of expression.

Political Processes

Strengthening Civic and Political Activism in Kazakhstan
Public Summary: To strengthen the capacity for independent civic and political movements to conduct strategic planning and organize public campaigns. The organization will apply its strategic planning and public campaign planning curriculum that it has successfully used in Russia to Kazakhstan. The organization will conduct strategic planning sessions, public campaign trainings, and webinars for key civic and political movements in Kazakhstan. It will hold a conference for political activists at the end of the project.

Kazakh Journalists Club

Promoting Historical Memory
Public Summary: To provide alternative viewpoints and analysis on political issues for citizens of Kazakhstan. The organization will operate a Kazakh-language YouTube channel and Facebook page which will cover political events, protests, movements, state corruption, and political repression. The channel will feature regular news updates, interviews, and analysis. New content will be published daily. Videos will average 15 minutes in length.

Kazakhstan International Bureau of Human Rights and Rule of Law

Defending Freedom of Peaceful Assembly
Public Summary: To provide humanitarian and legal support for human rights activists, journalists, and family members in mortal danger in Afghanistan. The organization will provide shelter, medical and psychological aid, housing, transport, legal advice, and assistance with schooling for children.

Political Processes

Promoting Public Political Discourse
Public Summary: To increase the capacity of Kazakh activists to formulate and present policy alternatives to the public. The organization will produce policy papers on key issues currently being discussed by civil society and share its policy ideas with government officials, the political opposition, civil society, and the general public. It will share its policy ideas in simple language on social media and on with independent media.

Public Foundation “PaperLab”

Promoting Expert Analysis in Mass Media
Public Summary: To promote evidence-based public discourse in the Kazakhstani media. The organization will prepare young professional and academic researchers to share their areas of expertise with the general public, providing media and public communications trainings and connecting them with the national media. Participants will include experts from a wide variety of fields, whose evidence-based analysis will contribute to credible, contextualized discussions in traditional and new media.

Freedom of Information

Independent News and Commentary
Public Summary: To provide an independent source of national news and analysis through social media to Russian and Kazakh language audiences. It will produce regular news updates and in-depth features and investigations for its YouTube, Telegram, and Instagram feeds. The content will provide analysis of current events and significant political and social issues in Kazakhstan.