A project focused on giving vent to the rights of vulnerable segments of society, has been progressed to the closeout. The Human Rights Fund (HRF-III) of the Asia Foundation aims to promote freedom of thought and expression of the minorities. The project was aimed to target the 24 most vulnerable districts of the country.
Initiated in 2013 with funding from the Netherlands Embassy, the project focuses on five areas: freedom from torture and other rights related to prisoners; freedom of speech and access to information; stemming gender-based violence andDiscrimination: Rights of religious and ethnic minorities; and economic rights. “Project has garnered a good response in their earlier stages, which is incentive to go on with the project,” just like the earlier phases, the middle one is designed to engage Pakistani civil society groups, the government and media agencies to improve Protection and Promotion of minority rights in the country. During the three-year phase, the Grantee has set up early warning systems in the vulnerable district (Quetta), to prevent and respond Religious Minorities issues.
The Series of meetings at the respective minority populated areas were being held with the HRDs member to highlight the project gaps and issues and take corrective measures to fill the gaps. SEHER identified HRDs actively participated in project activities but due to less issues of Force Conversion and other human rights violation(as per REAT mandate) which are not in line with the project objectives, irrelevant concern by local community, during project life five vulnerable approached REAT Helpline, those were properly handled and provided legal assistance,most of the cases were not falling under the HRF-REAT project criteria for legal assistance provision but facilitated through counseling’s and informal mediations.