Impact of this Community: Share your stories!

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Impact of this Community: Share your stories!

How has your participation in this community benefited you? Have you:

  • Benefited by having an opportunity to reflect on your work by participating in an online conversation?
  • Learned new tactics or tools to help you be more effective in your work?
  • Met new allies?

Share your story by adding a comment below!

If these testimonials have inspired you to help lead a New Tactics conversation, contact us!

Dialogue on fundraising allowed me to share ideas and discuss

The dialogue on fundraising for human rights allowed me to share ideas and discuss with fellow practitioners about organisational policies on gift acceptance. We have been discussing within my organisation about criteria for gift acceptance, and the New Tactics dialogue was a useful reminder that all charities should have such written policies, and be open about their gift acceptance criteria. I am looking forward to working more on the definition of such a public policy for my own organisation.

Being reminded by peers the importance of self-care

Like many therapists and other providers working with trauma and torture survivors, the severity of the trauma and the ongoing struggles of clients can become like background noise to daily work. I know it's there and try to attend to it without being completely overwhelmed. Sometimes the noise can become loud, and I find myself feeling overwhelmed. On a recent Tuesday I was aware that, in the span of a few short hours, I had sat with a client who was crying as she shared about childhood FGM, talked to another woman afraid to go out of her house because of memories of her torture, another man who has not seen his young children in over three years because of a drawn out asylum case and one more young woman who lived like a "slave" and only recently stated she believes that someone in the world actually cares about her. I was exhausted. (And this is a pretty typical day…)

But I was reminded about the dialogue on self care for providers. I went to the New Tactics website and spent some time reading the thoughtful posts. One idea about "vicarious resilience" has really stayed with me. It is through the shared experience of others than we can also heal. It was a reminder I needed to hear. I remembered then to go down the hall to talk to my colleagues. I remembered that the losses were only one part of these clients’ lives. And I remembered that our presence here as a healing center matters in the journey towards healing for our clients.

Cross-learning without expensive plane tickets, hotels & fees!

Dear colleagues, It was really inspiring to participate in this global dialogue on unarmed accompaniment. I was really excited to have the cross learning between Peace Brigades International (PBI), Christian Peacemakers Team (CPT), Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP) and others... and there was no polluting airplane tickets to purchase, nor was there any expensive hotel and conference fees. Having the voices of those in the field, those behind desks, those who are new, those who are activists, and those who are simply curious - all welcomed into this discussion. I am glad for New Tactics for hosting, and for everyone who has shared in this rather new conversation environment.

Paz.

Jan Passion -- Programme Officer, Nonviolent Peaceforce

Using info shared in dialogue in a training for women activists

I participated as a featured resource practitioner in the Tactical Dialogue - 'Staying Safe: Security Resources for Human Rights Defenders.'

In Indonesia [we are] organising a workshop on e-campaigning for women activists at the frontline of challenging the 'misuse' of culture / religion to justify discrimination and violence against women and girls.  We are doing this in collaboration with APC WNSP and we have 18 activists from Indonesia , Pakistan , Afghanistan , Malaysia  and Philippines who will explore how the virtual space can be used to support their campaigning and we have a session specifically on security issues associated with our use of IT.  I have picked up a lot from our dialogue which I will be bringing into the conversation.

It was great working with you and the rest and I hope to join the next dialogue.

Community radio for empowerment and change

New Tactics was new to me, when I engaged with the most recent dialogue on community radio, engagement, empowerment and human rights. What a wonderful platform you offer for (as you say) listening & learning coupled with reflecting on the own practice & sharing. And through the interchange with engaged individuals and organisations in the same area, we all have a chance to learn and grow. A great framework to take part in. While time is somehow never sufficient for this type of - additional - exchange and learning, it was definitely worth it - and I appreciate, respect and value much the role of our facilitator, Kristin on the site, in preparation and in separate mails encourging contributors along the way - a very effective and friendly way.

I will definitely come by from time to time to see what is 'on'!

Thank you so much for making this happen for all of us, practitioners, working - oftentimes - in isolation. A wonderful resource!

Warmest, birgitte (www.birgitte-jallov.com)

Inspired

I participated in the Tactics that Tickle dialogue and, of the many stories shared in this conversation, one in particular has already informed my own work. The example of leaving the "Milosovic" barrels for arrest has really informed my own thinking on how to create an action by sparking a specific reaction built on a 'lose-lose' proposition for the opposition.

We are still developing the action, but the example served as a great, tangible reminder that "the action is the reaction" and there are many ways in which to achieve it.

Learning & sharing new ideas for documenting violations

Overall, these dialogues are a very easy and cost effective way of bringing together expertise from around the world, in a very intense and creative sprint of online discussions.

I participated in the featured dialogue, Documenting Violations: Choosing the Right Approach, in January of 2010.  I was asked to participate as a featured resource practitioner because of my work at HURIDOCS.  Though I ended up putting in a lot of time into this online discussion, I found it very worthwhile!

What I found the most useful about this online dialogue was the opportunity to learn and clarify things, especially in the area of quantitative and qualitative data, to broaden my perspective and understand on this topic.  It was also useful to make new connections with colleagues doing similar work like Megan and Vijaya from Martus, and Nathan, Kenan and Kristin. We hope to work closely with them in the future. I also learned about key questions we need to focus on low literacy contexts.

I also picked up some new ideas to apply to my own work such as thinking more about security aspects – like how to put a database online securely, in terms of passwords being compromised by spyware.  Nathan's responses helped us realize that keypads are the best approach. This is invaluable.

Also, I learned about the value of mobile devices, as safe and convenient platforms for collecting data, or accessing data. We are thinking of Android apps and iPhone apps for tools like Casebox.

Overall, these dialogues are a very easy and cost effective way of bringing together expertise from around the world, in a very intense and creative sprint of online discussions.

- Daniel D'Esposito

Learning the nitty gritty of the shadow report process

What we found most useful about the 'Using Shadow Reports for Advocacy' dialogue, was the way the various experts on shadow reporting were sharing their experiences  as well as the sharing by representatives from various organizations  on what they have done in their respective countries, it was insightful to learn  from others the step by step process. The engagement of experts and organizations ( linking the grassroots to the national to the international) made shadow reporting process clearer especially how engagements are done to facilitate constructive dialogues e.g.  how a community based organization working on  water and sanitation in Kibera – Nairobi  or imminent evictions in an area like  Mukuru slums – Nairobi can become an issue in Geneva before the ESCR committee.

Ebony Youth Initiative members got an opportunity to learn  the various struggles organizations and individuals are going through  with regard to realization and enjoyment of human rights from a global perspective. Being a university student fresh from high school , this was a good opportunity to look at  human rights issue  from a global lens( Beatrice Chepkurui).It was an opportunity to reinforce the fact that human rights are contestable (Leonida).

The dialogues were well coordinated thus easy to follow up. The dividing of the dialogue into thematic issues made the discussion more relevant  eg if a participant wanted to follow up on an issue such as shadow reports and advocacy it was easy to do so without getting lost (Peter Matheka).

The immediate feedback to views of members was also very critical and beneficial as this provided  room for further reflections.

During the dialogue, we used the Kenya parallel report on ESCR, October 2008 as a reference point thus we were able through the interactions to deeply understand its importance, how the report  can be used  to enhance accountability among states etc.This  is given that due to globalization, we are no longer citizens of a state but citizens of the globe.

The dialogue helped us  realize that a shadow report  is not just any document written but it’s a  very powerful advocacy issue  and can help give  voice to the ‘voiceless.”

As an  organization we have realized there is more ahead for us to do in order to realize  human rights for our target group.

Some new ideas that we will take away from this dialogue include:

  • The discussion reinforced the power of numbers, the  extent to which working together with other organizations can achieve in articulating human rights issues
  • It also emphasized  that  governments should not look at  shadow reports as antagonistic towards them but as a  dialogue tool
  • Learning the nitty gritty of the parallel report process was very beneficial to us
Important to make know-how info available to grassroot orgs

I would like to commend on New Tactics for organizing this on-line dialogue on engaging the media. Because of the unrecognized status, there're very few resources avaialable to us at the begining of  preparing this report. We collect most of know-how information from websites, mailing lists and forums like this one. Thank to fellow women's orgs in Hong Kong for sharing their hands-on experiences and translation. Hence, I can't stress more the importance of sharing and making know-how information available to the most grassroots organizations.

A practical set of resources designed for human rights activists

I first heard about the work of New Tactics years ago from a dynamic Turkish activist – she raved about their approach and training. Intrigued, I checked out the website and have followed New Tactics ever since.

To date, I have yet to find anywhere else online such a practical set of resources designed for human rights activists. The fact that it is based on an ongoing dialogue – and is updated regularly – keeps it current and relevant to the lives and realities of activists. I particularly appreciate the information on self-care and security tactics, as well as my personal favorite – the use of humor in human rights activism.

New Tactics has created one of those rare spaces of community in the human rights world, and I truly appreciate their thoughtfulness, respect and care in developing and sharing such important ideas. Thank you!

New Tactics Dialogues Are Beneficial

Just a quick note to congratulate the organisers for facilitating such a stimulating series of dialogues. In Northern Ireland we have benefited from these exchanges and the sharing of good practice whether in form of the Workbook /Notebooks or the direct assistance of experienced practitioners such as Nancy.  We are still raving about her training program on tactical mapping!

The recent Video Advocacy dialogue was an excellent example of this allowing us to benchmark some of our work.

I look forward to learning from participants in future exchanges and wish you all well in your important work.

Making global connections through online dialogues

We participated in the Nonviolent Accompaniment dialogue. The networks and connections formed from our participation are still growing. For example, out of that dialogue we were asked to participate in the Women in Peacemaking Project's study of gender which led to WPP asking to see our training materials (which are on our website at www.cpt.org). Now, we are doing some more serious looking at undoing sexism within our organization and I am keeping in mind some of the organizations that I learned about through the dialogue (including WPP) for a time when we might want suggestions and input from other similar organizations. The visibility we gained as an organization was helpful, too. Who knows maybe someone who learned about CPT through New Tactics will become a volunteer with us some day.

Mostly, I was encouraged and inspired to know that all of our work is multiplied again and again through each of our efforts throughout the world. We may just be a few people here in Colombia but when added to those working in Kenya and the Phillipines and Macedonia and the list goes on, we truly are building a movement.

Michele

Christian Peacemaker Teams - Barrancabermeja, Colombia

Breaking Out of Routine and Habits

A story about how New tactics helped my work...

I was working for a human rights group that had/has atendency to use particular tactics because they are what we assume our constituents and supporters are most familiar with. We had a national meeting planned where the campaigners would be describing the campaigns for the year ahead and energising people to get involved. Our narrow thinking was frustrating, and seemed to discourage creativity. So I spent some time online looking for groups that kept a very open mind when selecting tactics. This was when I first discovered New Tactics and the great collection of case studies of such a wide range of tactics. In particular, I remember an anecdote about people in Turkey (I think!)  banging on saucepans and turning lights on and off at night to communicate to government their discontent with electricity prices. At least I think that was the tactic! Anyway, I shared this and other tactics from NT's website with the human rights campaign volunteers as a way to say 'anything is possible!'... and it worked. We were off to a great start in our planning and ended up using some innovative, creative and inclusive tactics.

Thanks New Tactics! 

James Whelan the Change Agency

Motivated by New Tactics

This is a great opportunity to share with everyone about how the New Tactics in Human rights has inspired me. Since my involvement in this project, I am more motivated and confident to participate in human rights work around the world. Thus, having the privilege to meet other human rights practitioners directly and online has increased my knowledge and commitment in this field.

To illustrate, after my participation in some of the conferences organized and sponsored by the New Tactics in human rights, I became very much involved in human rights work in Sierra Leone. This led me to work for the UN baked war crimes tribunal commonly known as the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Since then, my desire to promote human rights around Africa has increased tremendously.

I am particularly intrigued by meeting practitioners from different back grounds. For example when I discovered that  I was engaged in dialogue with Lawyers, social workers, students and others, I felt that it was a great opportunity to learn from other point of views and experiences.

The online dialogue on Peace and Reconciliation Process was particularly interesting to me. This has giving me the opportunity to explore other methods of addressing conflict and also help communities in the rebuilding process.  As a result of how much this Project has increased my interest in this field; I am currently taking a minor in Political Science with a concentration in Conflict resolution and major in psychology which will help me advocate and provide support for victims of human rights violations. Sometimes, I go online to read comments from others and try to evaluate whether a particular tactic can be used in my country.

Interestingly, there is a tactic from the African Regional workshop from a participant from Ghana that I found particularly fascinating, the tactic of raising awareness on the disadvantages of female genital mutilation. This tactic enables women to go through other aspects of the ceremony without harming the physical body. This is a tactic I will particularly like to introduce in my country gradually with the help of other practitioners to eliminate the practice of female genital mutilation. This is one of the benefits I gathered from participating in the New Tactics in human rights and I still hope for more.

I appreciate interacting with every participant and I wish to continue to benefit from your unique experiences and valuable human rights tactics you share.

Thank you

Neneh Binta Barrie

Online discussions have helped my work

Through participating in the online discussions we were able as an organization to learnt a lot.The interactive sharing of experiences from a wide range of resource people was very beneficial to us.We are now assured that whichever information we need for our various projects is just a click away, thanks to New Tactics.

The discussion on conflict resolution  could not come at a more appropriate time given that as Kenyans we were grappling with the effects of the Post Electoral Crisis.For us as an organization  we are putting together a project on Women and Post election crisis and the tools we will use are from the New Tactics  discussions.

The interaction provided us also with an opportunity for experience sharing, we were able to learn what is happening in other parts of the world and   incorporate the best practices.The website also gave us  an opportunity for visibility, as an organization we do not  yet have a website but are now sure so many organizations are aware of our work thanks to the HIV Prevention  dialogue and other dialogues in which we have participated in the past.

The discussions have also improved our understanding of human rights issues and deepened our knowledge.

Thanks

Leonida Odongo

Ebony Youth and Orphans Support Initiative Kenya

Testimonial: New Tactics community opens up new possibilities

I recently caught up with Priscila Neri, Senior Program Manager at WITNESS, and asked her how the New Tactics community has helped her in her work. She has found the community helpful for day-to-day problem solving, for finding inspiration and new possibilities, and finding creative, interesting tactics to share with her training participants. Thank you Priscila for sharing this video testimonial with us!

-- Kristin Antin, New Tactics Online Community Builder

Testimonial: New Tactics community identified common challenges

I had the pleasure of sitting down with Grace Lile and Yvonne Ng of WITNESS to talk about how our 2012 New Tactics conversation on Archiving for Human Rights helped them develop the Archivists' Guide to Archiving Video. They told me that the online conversation not only helped them to identify common challenges facing human rights archivists, but it also expanded their network of practitioners.

 

Testimonial: New Tactics community is a force-multiplier

I recently ask Bryan Nunez of the Guardian Project to tell me about his perspective of the New Tactics online community and how it is benficial to human rights defenders. He told me that New Tactics is a hub where human rights practitioners of all stripes can share their knowledge with each other. Thanks, Bryan!

-- Kristin Antin, New Tactics Online Community Builder

Testimonial: New Tactics community shares unexpected insights

Sam Gregory, Program Director at WITNESS, talks about how the unexpected contributions and insights from the New Tactics community provide an added incentive to participate in our online discussions. Thanks for sharing this, Sam!

-- Kristin Antin, New Tactics Online Community Builder

These discussions help us reflect on our work

The great thing about these discussion (in addition to seeing what others do) is to take a little time out to think about what we do ourselves.  I realise that we are doing a lot of things on a very practical level, without reflecting on how they are strategically important.  ICORN is a young organisation, and we are still moving forward more organically and by need/intuition, learning what works as we go.  It may not be the best way, but when you’re really busy it sometimes seems the only way.

So thank you for your great work!

Elisabeth

Programme Director

ICORN

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