The psychosocial focus in the protection of women human rights defenders
Being a human rights defender is a job that implies a lot of risk, often in contexts of socio-political violence and an increase in criminalisation. The stress and constant concerns that this work brings with it generates a series of impacts on both physical and emotional levels that do not only attack the human rights defender personally, but also weaken their collective organisational processes of resistance.
In order to talk about the psychosocial impacts that the context of permanent threats cause, the Mesoamercian Initiative for Women Human Rights Defenders (IMD or IM-Defensoras) and PBI organised a Regional Conference. The conference took place from 8th until 11th October 2018 in Colombia with representatives from each entity of PBI in Latin America as well as 30 women human rights defenders from 20 organisations members of the IMD in Mesoamerica (Colombia, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Mexico).
The conference took place in the framework of a project that PBI and IMD are implementing that is financed by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Relations. Through this project the IMD and PBI have begun to exchange knowledge between the two organisations as well as throughout the different PBI entities about the psychosocial focus, gender, security and protection as well as temporal relocation.