Organization of training courses and theoretical-practical seminars for NGO members as well as other attendees interested in receiving specified training on United Nations mechanisms for the protection and promotion of human rights.

CCIG Training for Journalists and Media Experts in the Basque Country.

In the framework of its collaboration with the UNESCO Extea Center for Basque Country, CCIG facilitated a one-day training on United Nations mechanisms for the promotion and protection of Human Rights. Addressed to 13 journalists and media and communication experts in the Basque Country, the training took place in the historical setting of the “Edificio La Bolsa”, in Bilbao on November 25th. While offering an overview of the notion and the historical background of Human Rights, the session focused IMG_6740on the United Nations’ commitment to addressing human rights violations, with special attention paid to the mechanisms established by the UN Human Rights Council, namely the Special Procedures and the Universal Periodic Review. Media and communication experts are called upon to accomplish a fundamental role in the dissemination of UN bodies’ recommendations at the national and local levels by raising awareness about the human rights commitments made by the State and in order to mobilize local Civil Society to take concrete actions aimed at improving the human rights situation in the given country.

Accordingly, a specific section of the training was devoted to showing the participants how to access UN information, in particular UN documents and reports on the main human rights challenges in Spain.

For more information on the training session please consult the UNESCO Extea website by clicking, here.


CCIG Initiatives for capacity building of Children’s Rights Defenders in Latin America

Guatemala City. The International Catholic Center of Geneva (CCIG), together with its member organizations Edmund Rice International (ERI) and Marist International Solidarity Foundation (FMSI) – organized a training for “Children’s rights defenders in Latin America”, which took place from 8 to 12February 2016, in Guatemala City, at the Marist Training Center.DSCN0188

The training aimed to contribute to the full implementation of children’s rights in Latin America, through training of 25 children’s rights defenders from different NGOs working with vulnerable children in five countries: Guatemala, Honduras, Bolivia, Nicaragua, El Salvador. Specifically, the training dealt with monitoring and follow up procedures of UPR recommendations focusing on children’s rights in the five countries concerned. Through theoretical presentations and practical exercises DSCN0088the participants were offered the opportunity to enhance their current activities on the topics, while also developing new strategies in collaboration with other partners. New forms of coordination nationally and regionally, in fact, constitute a great asset for successful advocacy actions. In addition to the presentations of the main trainers, Ms. Maria D’Onofrio (CCIG) and Mr. Manel Mendoza (FMSI), a panel discussion was held on Thursday 11 February, with the participation of Ms. Alexia Ghyoot (UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights – Guatemala), Ms. Dora Alicia Muñoz (UNICEF – Guatemala) and Ms. Anabella Sibrián (Plataforma Internacional contra la Impunidad).


This training is part of a larger project carried out by CCIG – thanks to the support of the Republic and Canton of Geneva and Adveniat – in order to strengthen the advocacy capacity of civil society in the five countries concerned. Enabling local children’s rights defenders to undertake more effective advocacy actions would allow vulnerable children to truly benefit from the existing international human rights system set up to protect them.

The project’s next step will be the organization of a side event during the Human Rights Council session in June 2016 in order to bring valuable experience from the field to the attention of international decision makers.

For more accounts of the training  see articles by Edmund Rice International  and Marist International Solidarity Foundation.

For further information on CCIG training in Guatemala, please watch this video.


2015 Edition – CCIG and UNESCO Etxea’s Training Course on the UN Human Rights Protection Mechanisms

A new edition of the training session on the United Nations Human Rights Mechanisms, co-organized by the International Catholic Center of Geneva (CCIG) and UNESCO Etxea- UNESCO Basque Country Centre, took place from the 30th of September to the 1st of October within the premises of the CCIG.

The training sessions were attended by representatives of the Basque government working mainly on human rights issues affecting the region as well as international cooperation.  The objective of the training was to familiarize the participants with the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Mechanisms – such as the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), and the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council – and provide practical resources and key contacts to help the promotion and protection of human rights in the Spanish Basque region.

The participants attended sessions of the UN Human Rights Council and the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Officers of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCRC) working, among others, with Special Rapporteurs, Working Groups and the UPR, led the participants through training sessions that reinforced participants’ knowledge and understanding of the functioning of the human rights protection mechanisms provided for by the UN and shared with them tangible examples of their work. Attendees of the CCIG-UNESCO Etxea training learned how to collaboratively worked with these mechanisms and also benefited from the presentations of other speakers representing civil society organizations that are involved in the promotion and protection of human rights at grassroots.

In addition, the training sessions engaged participants in very constructive conversations and reflections on how effectively respect, protect and fulfil human rights at the Basque local level and addressed specific topics of a more general interest such as truth and reconciliation processes and the connections between human rights and migration. Attendance of informal meetings and side events completed the participants’ experience in Geneva.

The CCIG and UNESCO-Etxea will further collaborate to develop other similar training sessions and future initiatives.