Justice & Dignity for the Middle East & North Africa

Justice & Dignity for the Middle East & North Africa

The Justice & Dignity for the Middle East & North Africa program collaborated with eight partners on issues such as human rights, technology, and citizen action. The project responded to the needs of activists and civil society organizations working in transitional environments across the region.

IREX and its consortium implemented projects that responded to needs articulated by groups on the ground. In addition to developing its own initiatives, IREX served as the lead member of the consortium.

Justice and Dignity for the Middle East and North Africa

The Justice & Dignity for the Middle East & North Africa program collaborated with eight partners on issues such as human rights, technology, and citizen action. The project responded to the needs of activists and civil society organizations working in transitional environments across the region.

IREX and its consortium implemented projects that responded to needs articulated by groups on the ground. In addition to developing its own initiatives, IREX served as the lead member of the consortium.

Quick Facts

  • More than 70 civil society organizations received technical assistance and grants.
  • The program’s 27 initiatives improved the lives of 5,000 citizens. The program rapidly responded to needs in the areas of conflict, media, and youth across the region.
  • Organizations developed stronger advocacy tools, created clear advocacy plans, improved their support bases and connections with their constituents, and built stronger relationships with the government and media.
  • Eleven groups that organize youth from different sectarian backgrounds have flourished in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, and Tunisia.
  • Five coalitions and partnerships among local organizations have been created and sustained in the region.

Goals

  • Support civil society groups working on marginalized issues in challenging environments during times when they struggle to find other support.
  • Strengthen civil society organizations’ relationships with stakeholders so that they can work on issues that might not otherwise be possible to address.
  • Support partners in examining a more diverse range of advocacy and service delivery approaches in response to challenges that inhibit their work.

Project Activities

Responding rapidly to emerging needs in the region as citizens sought change and governments made reforms, IREX and its partners undertook numerous projects in the region. Highlights included:

  • Advocating for Morocco: The program provided customized technical assistance to three rights-based, mission-driven civil society organizations that each represent a marginalized group in Morocco: persons with disabilities, women, and Amazigh people. Staff assisted the organizations in improving their ability to collaborate with Morocco’s new government and advocate for their work.
  • We Love Network: The Justice & Dignity initiative supported the formation of a We Love Network, based on previous work with We Love Tripoli. The Network brought together the We Love groups and other civil society organizations interested in building civic engagement, youth empowerment, citizen journalism, and freedom of speech.
  • Advocating for Libya: The program partnered with local organizations to enhance their efforts in advocating for an inclusive and fair justice system. Staff provided targeted technical assistance with a special focus on issues affecting women and minorities in advocating for justice sector reform.
  • Promoting Conflict-Sensitive Journalism in Libya: Program staff trained journalists on conflict sensitive journalism. The trainings explored how news and information can be presented in ways that mitigate conflict, and how inflammatory language, inaccuracies, and bias can exacerbate it. The curriculum also examined the impact of trauma on both journalists and the communities they cover.
  • National Reconciliation in Syria: The program supported its partner ICRD in leading three faith-based reconciliation and collaborative problem-solving programs. The programs engaged diverse groups—Arab tribal leaders, Kurdish tribal leaders, and members of different Syrian opposition groups—to promote improved relations and cooperation.
  • Solutions for Syria: IREX partnered with the Munathara Initiative, an organization that promotes inclusive and factually substantiated debates through skill-building workshops and debates. The organizations brought together artists, speakers, and performers for a social media campaign that elevated youth voices and opinions on the Syrian conflict.