Latin America and Caribbean

Regional: Latin America and Caribbean 2017

A Regional Approach to Promoting Democratic Values in Cuba

Centro para la Apertura y el Desarrollo de America Latina


To support and raise the visibility of pro-democracy actors and human rights advocates in Latin America. The grantee will promote greater international awareness of the efforts of democracy activists to ensure greater political pluralism throughout the region.


Advocating for Legislative Implementation of Inter-American Freedom of Expression Standards in the Americas

The Trust for the Americas


To promote the right to freedom of expression as recognized in the Inter-American Democratic Charter. The grantee will assist in promoting, enshrining, and implementing Inter-American freedom of expression (FOE) standards in countries that are lagging behind in their implementation or that have adopted norms contrary to them. It will also work to foster greater respect for Inter-American FOE standards in Cuba.


Advocating for the Independence and Sustainability of the Inter-American System

Center for Justice and International Law


To strengthen the independence and effectiveness of the Inter-American System through increased financial sustainability and civil society oversight; and to promote adequate civil society participation before the Organization of American States. The organization will mobilize a regional coalition to advocate for the financial sustainability and political independence of the IAHRS. The group will educate member states, civil society, and the public at large on the contributions of the System to democratic and human rights standards.


Anti-Corruption Network in Latin America

Fundacion Espacio Publico


To foster anti-corruption reforms in Latin America. The grantee will convene partner organizations to formalize an anti-corruption network and hold a regional meeting among them to establish communication and working strategies. It will also launch a digital platform to disseminate the network’s materials, and a periodic newsletter to highlight findings and best practices.


Building Consensus on Standards for Strengthened Vetting of Political Party Candidates

National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI)


To address public integrity and transparency challenges in Latin America that are undermining confidence in democratic institutions. The institute will support efforts by political and civic leaders to generate guidelines to strengthen political candidate transparency practices. The institute will capitalize on ongoing international and regional attention to public integrity shortfalls to engage key political party and civil society actors in regional, multi-sector forums and working groups to develop, implement, and advocate for candidate vetting mechanisms.


Building Democratic Governance

Asuntos del Sur


To strengthen the capacity of young leaders in civil society seeking office or those already participating in public service to foster political innovation and democratic governance in Latin America, and to promote the exchange of best practices on political innovation and governance among civil society activists in the region. The organization will launch the Political Innovation Academy, based on a digital platform, to provide effective online training on democratic governance for individuals participating or aspiring to participate in policy-making. It will also continue developing and implementing successful initiatives such as the Network of Political Innovation and its training seminars with low-cost tools for effective and constructive engagement and advocacy for civil society.


Defending Democratic Institutions and Norms in Latin America

Latin American and Caribbean Network for Democracy, Inc.


To strengthen the role of civil society throughout Latin America in defending democratic institutions and the norms enshrined in the Inter-American System and other multilateral bodies. The organization will maintain an active presence in multilateral forums to uphold universal human rights and democratic norms. Additionally, it will carry out a series of actions to strengthen the advocacy capacity of its members, particularly those defending the rights of minority groups.  Finally, the organization will continue to strengthen its institutional structure and modernize its communications strategies.


Democratic Solidarity

Forum 2000 Foundation


To foster effective international solidarity to defend and promote democracy and human rights. The organization will continue to foster the institutionalization of the Democratic Solidarity platform, a broad coalition of democratic activists. The platform will define strategies and actions to sustain democracy in the region, build international support for democracy and human rights in the region. The organization will leverage its international network to share lessons learned regarding democratic transitions and governance challenges. 


Empowering Community and Civil Society Participation in Development Decisions

International Senior Lawyers Corporation


To increase community consultation and participation in the planning and implementation of large-scale development projects in Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador; and to improve the capacity of local lawyers, community leaders, and civil society representatives to represent community priorities vis-à-vis corporate and government interests. The organization will mobilize the skills and experience of high-level international lawyers to increase the technical, legal, and advocacy skills of local civil society organizations.


Enhancing Governance through Improved Fiscal Policy in Central America

Instituto Centroamericano de Estudios Fiscales


To consolidate support for and coordinate with government officials to improve democratic governance and fiscal policies in Central America. The organization will build upon and expand its working relationships with various government agencies to offer technical support for drafting fiscal reform initiatives, and in turn enhance the capacity of government officials throughout Central America. It will also enhance its coordination with key civil society organizations in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador working on the fiscal transparency component of the Open Government Partnership in each country.


Fostering Gender Justice with Transparency and Collaboration in Latin America

Equipo Latinoamericano de Justicia y Genero


To strengthen institutional mechanisms to prevent gender violence in Latin America and to enhance civil society capacity to monitor the judiciary’s performance regarding the eradication of violence against women in Latin America. The grantee will continue working with a network of organizations in six countries in Latin America to deepen their capacity to monitor judiciary performance regarding violence against women. It will work with agents of change within the judiciary and the public prosecutor’s offices to implement international standards of women’s rights protection.  It will lead efforts to transfer best practices for collaborative and constructive and will public awareness efforts with international organizations and the population at large.


Fostering Online Investigative Journalism in Central America

Fundación de Estudios Estratégicos para la Democracia


To foster investigative online journalism in Central America’s Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. The Salvadoran-based grantee will support an online media portal specializing in coverage of citizen security, transnational crime and violence, corruption, and political issues in the sub-region. It will produce hard-hitting investigative pieces on these critical issues and collaborate with like-minded media, universities, and civil society organizations.


Increasing Civil Society Oversight of Chinese Investments in Latin America

Derecho, Ambiente y Recursos Naturales


To strengthen the negotiation and advocacy skills of indigenous communities in the Amazon region to demand enforcement of domestic and international environmental and human rights safeguards. Working with partners in four countries the grantee will promote understanding of the normative framework and potential recourse mechanisms for communities affected by large-scale Chinese investments. The group will facilitate the creation of a regional network to monitor Chinese investments in the Amazon region, which will share information, make statements, and advocate for the enforcement of domestic and regional environmental, human rights, and transparency standards.


Increasing Legislative and Political Party Transparency

National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI)


To assist legislatures, political parties, and civil society organizations in Argentina, Colombia, and Peru to address practices and perceptions of political corruption and lack of transparency and accountability. The institute will incorporate representatives of several sectors from these countries into regional transparency initiatives and strengthen working relationships among them to advance transparency and accountability issues. In collaboration with local partners, the institute will strengthen the capacity of participating legislatures and political parties to develop and implement transparency practices and initiatives.


Journal of Democracy in Portuguese

Fundacao Instituto Fernando Henrique Cardoso


The organization will produce an online version of the Journal of Democracy in Portuguese to contribute to information sharing and debate on democracy-related issues among Portuguese speaking audiences in Brazil, Africa and Europe. The grantee will publish two issues per year, translating at least four selected articles from the English version of the journal for each issue and actively disseminating the online material.


Latin American Youth Network for Democracy

Red Latinoamericana de Jovenes por la Democracia


To promote democratic solidarity and defend democratic norms among youth activists in Latin America. The network will serve as a regional platform for youth activists and political leaders to foster civic participation of youth, identify common threats to democracy, and coordinate activities to mutually support their objectives. The grantee will engage Latin American governments and multilateral bodies to defend democratic norms as enshrined in the Inter-American Democratic Charter and advocate for consideration of youth interests in the regional policy agendas. Additionally, it will organize campaigns and forums to rally support for salient democratic issues, discuss democracy and youth-related issues, and share best practices to address them.


Mapping Venezuelan Corruption

Producciones el Rastro LLC


To increase transparency and accountability in the Venezuelan government procurement processes; and to foster collaboration with journalists across the region. The organization will help unmask an international web of relations between Venezuelan government contractors and international investors, and collaborate with Latin American journalists to research and publish a series of in-depth articles mapping Venezuelan corruption.


Promoting Collaborative Journalism

Fundacion Connectas


To increase journalists’ investigative skills and strengthen cross-border, cross-media, and cross-sector collaboration; and to promote media coverage and public discussion of critical transnational issues. The grantee will launch an online training program to identify rising journalist stars, boost their investigative techniques, and provide them with financial and editorial support to carry out their investigative projects. In addition, it will organize virtual and in-person dialogues on issues of public interest in partnership with civil society, universities and government entities.


Promoting Effective and Transparent Governance in the Southern Cone

International Republican Institute (IRI)


To strengthen effective and transparent governance in South America’s southern cone. The institute will work in Argentina and Paraguay to expand access to public information and service delivery in municipal governments. In Argentina, it will enhance congressional capacity to implement a recently approved Access to Public Information law. In Paraguay, it will pilot a good governance certification program for municipalities.


Promoting Fundamental Labor Rights in Colombia and Venezuela

Solidarity Center (SC)


To build and broaden support for the defense of fundamental labor rights in Venezuela beyond the trade union movement, and prepare new union leaders to advocate for workers’ interests through democratic processes. In Colombia, the center will bolster union participation in transitional bodies established to implement aspects of the peace accord, as well as support union-led advocacy for improved access to justice.


Promoting Fundamental Labor Rights in Peru and Ecuador

Solidarity Center (SC)


To promote effective, independent worker organizations in Peru and Ecuador and their inclusion in development policy and governance. The center will provide unions with technical and legal support to represent vulnerable workers’ interests with decision-makers and employers, and reinforce the importance of respect for fundamental labor rights.


Promoting Respect for Democratic and Human Rights Norms



To strengthen and expand a coalition of Latin American and European human rights and democracy actors and institutions working to defend universal democratic values.  The organization will raise awareness in European and UN institutions on the deteriorating democratic and human rights conditions in key Latin American countries. The organization will foster greater collaboration and interaction between European and Latin American actors, countries, and institutions in support of shared global democratic and human rights principles. These efforts will yield official statements in support of democratic principles to counter t the emergence of authoritarian trends.


Raising Awareness of Hate Speech, Crime and Discrimination against Vulnerable Populations in Latin America

Colectivo para la Diversidad


To raise awareness of growing violence, discrimination, and human rights violations against vulnerable populations and to improve the quality of press coverage of human rights violations, hate speech, and crimes against those groups in key countries of Latin America. The organization will continue developing its digital portal and fostering high quality press coverage to generate awareness about cases of hate speech, violence, and human rights violations committed against vulnerable groups, included sexual minorities. It will continue to provide training on journalistic best practices in order to increase the rigor, quality, and quantity of reporting on these issues in Latin America.


Raising Awareness on China’s Human Rights Record

Fundacion Ambiente y Recursos Naturales


To raise awareness on China’s human rights record in Latin America; and to strengthen the institutional capacity of Latin American civil society organizations to use the United Nations Universal Periodic Review. A coalition of five Latin American organizations will document cases of human rights violations by Chinese companies in four countries: Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Argentina. This coalition will draft shadow country reports and a regional comparative report showing patterns of human rights violations, and will carry out advocacy activities in Latin America and Geneva.


Rights-Based Approaches to Promote Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining in the Americas

Solidarity Center (SC)


To improve the capacity of Brazilian unions to represent historically marginalized groups of workers, and to assist Latin American unions affiliated to the Trade Union Confederation of the Americas to access international mechanisms to obtain justice for systematic violations of fundamental labor and human rights. The center will aid its Brazilian partners in the construction of joint strategies to improve compliance with labor and human rights, and to use collective bargaining to promote more effective inclusion for young, Afro-Brazilian, disabled, and women workers.


School of Advocacy: Constructing Democratic Governance in Latin America

Fundacion Ciudadano Inteligente


To foster innovative leadership from civil society and government to address democratic governance challenges in Latin America. Through a new edition of its School of Advocacy program, the organization will continue empowering emerging leaders in civil society and government in Colombia, Ecuador and Guatemala with skills, knowledge, and tools for building multi-stakeholder approaches to tackling key governance challenges, such as public security, accountability, and social exclusion. The organization will continue building a network that supports principles and tools of democratic governance within countries in Latin America, with an emphasis on transfer of best and most successful practices. 


Strengthening Accountability in the Use of Public Funds

Fundacion Poder Ciudadano


To strengthen civil society’s oversight of the use of public funds in Latin America, and their capacity to advocate for accountability in the region. The grantee will lead a coalition of organizations in Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Guatemala and Paraguay. The coalition will further consolidate as a network that promotes public awareness of the negative effects to democracy and everyday life that the misuse of public funds generates. The coalition will work with other civil society organizations to strengthen social oversight of public funds, and will advocate with political actors to promote institutional integrity and a transparent use of public funds.


Strengthening Freedom of Expression in the Digital Age in Latin America

Fundacion Universidad de Palermo


To strengthen the protection of freedom of expression on the internet in Latin America. The organization will strengthen its monitoring efforts of internet governance and carry out civil society capacity building activities through trainings. It will also draft policy papers and advocate for the protection of existing standards and the regulation of digital rights and internet access in the region, especially with regional organizations such as the OAS.


Strengthening Political Party Practice and Reform

National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI)


To strengthen political parties and organizations, support political reforms, and expand the opportunities of regional activists to exchange tools and information. The institute will facilitate peer-to-peer knowledge transfer and dialogue through regular technical assistance and training exchanges in target countries, and provide access to political reform materials and comparative experiences through a Spanish-language online portal.


Strengthening the Capacity of Human Rights Defenders to Promote and Protect their Rights Before the UN System and the OAS

International Institute on Race, Equality and Human Rights


To enhance the knowledge and advocacy skills of Cuban human rights defenders. The organization will train Afro-descendent women leaders to use the Inter-American System of Human Rights to advocate for greater respect for their rights. In addition, the organization will work with human rights activists to advocate for their interests in specific agencies of the UN Human Rights System.


Strengthening the Credibility and Independence of the Inter-American System

Due Process of Law Foundation


To strengthen the credibility and independence of the Inter-American System; and to promote the exchange of information between UN and Inter-American institutions to harmonize standards and promote enforcement. The organization will mobilize a coalition of civil society organizations to advocate for transparent and participatory processes in the nomination and selection of IAHRS commissioners and judges. This coalition will carry out advocacy and informational activities to promote practices in line with other international human rights bodies. The group will also promote the exchange of information and standards between the Inter-American and the United Nations systems on issues of business and human rights.


Strengthening the Institutional Capacity of Human Rights Organizations

Clovek v tisni, o.p.s. (People in Need)


To strengthen the institutional capacity of human rights organizations in Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela; and to raise awareness about human rights violations and closing democratic space. Through on-site technical assistance, training, and micro-grants, the organization will improve the effectiveness of local groups and assist them in developing local, regional, and international advocacy agendas. The group will also facilitate the exchange of experiences and increase coordination among groups facing similar challenges in Latin America.


Strengthening Youth Advocacy in Central America

Fundacion Nacional para el Desarrollo


To strengthen the capacity of Central American youth organizations to effectively participate in the democratic process and regional integration efforts. The organization will continue to work with a representative group of youth organizations in each Central American country and provide training and strategic orientation in political advocacy, project development, and effective network building.


Supporting Civil Society Strategic Engagement

The Tides Center


To facilitate regional discussions on and promote the inclusion of human rights standards in the policy commitments made by the G20; and to strengthen the capacity of Latin American civil society organizations to engage in the 2018 C20 and G20 processes. The group will facilitate dialogue, consensus, and policy recommendations around priority issues. Through workshops and advocacy, it will break down barriers between civil society, labor, and business groups to collectively advocate for bold policy commitments by G20 governments in relation to human rights.


Tools for Effective Citizen Engagement in Latin America

Nossas Cidades


To strengthen the capacity of activists to promote citizen participation in public discussions and policy advocacy in Latin America. The organization will work with a group of Latin American organizations based primarily in Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala and Argentina to empower them with digital and offline methodologies and tools to engage more effectively with their audiences and to advocate before government officials. The organization’s digital tools and methodologies will strengthen other organizations’ capacities to advocate for government accountability and democratic governance.


Venezuelan Oil Diplomacy

Fundacion Connectas


To increase transparency and accountability on the impact of Venezuela’s preferential oil sales on the diplomatic positions of certain Caribbean and Central American countries; and to strengthen collaborative, transnational journalism. The organization will bring together 10 journalists from Central America, the Caribbean, and Venezuela to exchange information and identify areas of investigation that shed light into Venezuela’s Petrocaribe investment, its impact on local corruption, and geopolitical relations.

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