JAN 2016: Lote 8 community, El Estor, Guatemala. Mayan Q’eqchi’ villagers gather in the community they are re-building. In 2007, private security guards, soldiers and police burned 100 homes to the ground, shot at and beat community members and gang-raped 11 women, as part of an illegal, forced eviction on behalf of Canadian companies Skye Resources and Hudbay Minerals.

YOUR FUNDS AT WORK

Below, a summary of many of the organizations, individuals and projects that Rights Action funded and worked with in 2016.  Rights Action receives funds from individual and institutional donors in the U.S. and Canada, including: FPSE International Solidarity Fund, Tikva Grassroots Empowerment Fund, Lush Cosmetics, Cut Foundation, Agostino Foundation.  On request, we can provide proper proposals for the work of these people and groups.

Donors, Journalists & Investigators: More information?

For the work and struggles summarized below, we can – on request – provide more background information on the issues our partner groups are resisting and working to change, and on our partner groups themselves.

2017: This year, Rights Action will continue to channel as much grassroots funding as we can, throughout the year, to the community, human rights and environmental defense struggles we have long been supporting (many of which are highlighted below), and we will continue with our education and activism work connecting the dots between U.S. and Canadian government and private sector economic and military activities, and the repression, harms and violations our partner groups are suffering, resisting and struggling to change.

2016

Honduras

Azacualpa Environmental Committee: $4,300

Campesino communities (western Honduras) denouncing harms (water depletion and contamination; cracked homes; health harms) caused by -, and resisting the illegal expansion of Canada-based Aura Mineral’s cyanide-leaching gold mine in western Honduras, including the possible destruction of their 200 year old community cemetery.

Berta Caceres family: $23,000

Family of indigenous rights, anti-imperialist, feminist, environmental defender Berta Caceres, assassinated in her home in La Esperanza by the Honduran regime on March 3, 2016.  Funds for family security, for education of Berta’s children, and for family work and struggle for justice.

COPINH (Coordinator of Indigenous & Popular Organizations): $14,300

Co-founded by Berta Caceres in 1992, COPINH works in campesino, Lenca communities in western Honduras in defense of the environment, local autonomy, human and indigenous rights, against illegal and violent incursions by national and international hydro-electric dam, mining and logging interests.  Funds used also in support of COPINH members-victims of repression, killings and “criminalization” by the regime.

Honduras Solidarity Network: $5,000

Accompaniment and activism work in Honduras in support of community resistance struggles and exposing how U.S. and Canadian economic and military interests are part of the problems in Honduras.

OFRANEH (Fraternal Organization of Garifuna & Black Peoples): $16,000

Founded in 1979, OFRANEH is the leading Garifuna organization working on Honduras’ north coast in defense of the environment, local autonomy, human and indigenous rights.  Garifuna communities are resisting illegal and violent incursions onto their lands by national and international tourism operators and African palm producers.  Funds used also in support of OFRANEH members-victims of repression, killings and “criminalization” by the regime.

Siria Valley Environmental Committee: $1,300

Campesino communities suffering and denouncing chronic blood-poisoning harms caused by Goldcorp Inc’s mountain-top removal, cyanide-leaching mine that operated from 2000-2008.

Emergency response: $2,000

Health and security support for a shot journalist;

Health and security support for a university/ LGBT activist tortured by police.

 

Guatemala

Education: $8,100

  • Pacux refugee community (Baja Verapaz): Scholarships for children of Mayan Achi genocide victims, in high school and university.
  • Rio Negro (Baja Verapaz): support for primary school in Mayan Achi community.
  • San Miguel Ixtahuacan (San Marcos): Scholarship for law degree studies of Mayan Mam community leader and victim of mining harms and violations.
  • El Estor (Izabal), scholarships for children of Mayan Q’eqchi’ community leaders and victims of mining harms and violations.

Santa Maria Tzeja (Quiche): $20,500

  • Mayan community primary and middle schools, and scholarships to high school and university.

Mining harms ~ versus ~ Community Development, Environment & Human Rights

La Puya resistance movement: $1,800

Campesino community members working near Guatemala City in defense of environment and lands, resisting the illegal and violent mining interests of the American company KCA Associates (with partial financial investment from former Canadian owner Radius Gold).

FREDEMI (San Miguel Ixtahuacan Defense Front): $2,400

Mayan Mam people working in western Guatemala to document and denounce on-going harms and violations caused by Canadian mining company Goldcorp Inc.’s open-pit, cyanide-leaching mine.

Tahoe Resources resistance movement: $1,550

Community members in southern Guatemala (San Rafael Las Flores, Santa Rosa) working in defense of environment and human rights, seeking justice for Tahoe Resources linked repression.

El Estor Territorial Committee: $26,000

Mayan Qeqchi people working in eastern Guatemala in defense of environment and community well-being, seeking justice in Guatemala and Canada for harms and violations caused by the Canadian nickel mining companies Hudbay Minerals and Skye Resoruces (and their subsidiary company CGN).

Funds also use for:

  • health support for German Chub, shot and paralyzed from chest down (including loss of use of one lung), a victim of Hudbay linked repression;
  • health support for women victims of Hudbay and Skye linked rapes;
  • support for Lote 8 community, re-building some of 100 homes destroyed in 2007 during illegal, violent evictions;

Community Development & Environmental Protection: $4,750

  • El Estor “Rio Vivo” community tree planting project.
  • Rio Negro community forestry documentation project, by Fundacion Nueva Esperanza.
  • El Estor “La Union” community women’s chicken and pig project.
  • El Estor “Lote 8” community women’s agricultural sustenance project.

Truth, Memory, Justice: $6,000

  • FAMDEGUA (Family Members of the Disappeared), survivor, witness participation in the “Creompaz” and “Dos Erres” war crimes trials.
  • Rio Negro community, construction of Chapel at “Pacoxom”, site of one of the World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank’s Chixoy dam massacres.
  • Annual commemoration for Adolfo Ich, assassinated September 27, 2009 by security guards hired by Hudbay Minerals.

FAFG (Guatemalan Foundation of  Forensic Anthropology): $23,500

Since 1992, the Guatemalan “exhumation team” has been digging up remains of massacres and genocide victims from mass graves across the country, in partnership with surviving family and community members, identifying and locating people kidnapped, assassinated and “disappeared” by the U.S. backed regimes in the 1980s, and participating in trials seeking justice for genocide and other war crimes.

Emergency response and various: $29,000

  • El Estor, home building, health & family survival needs of victim of Canadian nickel mining repression.
  • El Estor, security for community defender, victim of shooting attack on her home and family.
  • El Estor, health support for community leader, suffering from cancer.
  • El Estor, support for Lote 8 community members surviving a drought.
  • El Estor, support for family members of forest fire fatalities.
  • El Estor, support for families of two “Rio Vivo” community members killed in land struggle.
  • Rio Negro, support for survivors of a fire that killed two and destroyed a home.

 

North-South Education & Activism: $28,500

  • Documentary films: Mayan Qeqchi land and justice struggles; Kukama people land struggle in Peru;
  • Educational presentations: Rochester NY; Depauw U.; U.Guelph; Brock U.;
  • Journalists and photo-journalists: writing on Alliance for Prosperity; www.mimundo.org; supporting Toronto Star and NYT journalist visits;
  • Educational delegations: to Honduras (Berta Caceres assassination); to Guatemala (UNBC-RA); to Honduras (MIR Peace Centre);
  • MISN: Education and activism related to Canadian mining repression and harms, impunity and corruption;

Other countries: $23,500

  • Otros Mundos (Mexico), support for security needs and justice work of Gustavo Castro, survivor of and eye-witness to assassination of Berta Caceres.
  • COMPPA (Mexico), support for community radio projects in southern Mexico and Central America.
  • Human Rights Congress, Herbert Anaya Sanabria (El Salvador), education for human rights in El Salvador and Honduras (after assassination of Berta Caceres).

*******

More information

We can – on request – provide more background information on the history of Rights Action’s work, on the issues our partner groups are resisting and working to change, and on our partner groups themselves.

  • “Take Action”: Click the “Take Action” links below, to follow our work electronically and to donate.
  • Print newsletter: Send your name and mailing address to info@rightsaction.org to receive our 3 times-per-year print newsletter

 

TAKE ACTION

to our newsletter to get frequent alerts.
for frequent updates about what's happening and what you can do.
to channel your funds directly to dozens of community based organizations that are designing and implementing their own community development, environmental defence, democracy and rule of law strengthening, and emergency relief projects.