In 2001, Front Line Defenders launched its highly successful Protection Grants programme to provide timely and efficient financial assistance to human rights defenders at risk.
Front Line Defenders Protection Grants can pay for organisational and personal provisions to improve the security and protection of human rights defenders and their organisations.
Protection Grants can pay for provisions to improve the security and protection of human rights defenders and their organisations, including, but not limited to:
- improving physical security of an organisation or individual, digital security and communication security;
- supporting legal fees for HRDs who are being judicially harassed;
- paying for medical fees for HRDs who have been attacked or who have suffered a medical condition as a result of their peaceful human rights activities;
- providing family assistance for imprisoned HRDs or family members who are at risk because of a HRD's activities.
Grants are for amounts up to a maximum of €7,500.
Front Line Defenders does not provide funding for:
- Retrospective funding;
- International organisations;
- Organisations that have applied or are already receiving funding for the same purpose elsewhere;
- Projects which focus on broader human rights issues rather than the specific situation of human rights defenders;
- Costs for human rights defenders who are already in exile;
- Ongoing office running costs such as salaries and rent;
- Armed security guards;
- Purchase of vehicles.
Protection Grants are generally not awarded for 100% of the proposed budget. Applications may be made in Arabic, Russian, English, French, Spanish, Farsi, Portuguese and Chinese.
After submitting an application, an organisation is likely to be contacted by a member of Front Line Defenders staff with questions to clarify the application. Lobbying in support of applications is not encouraged. All applicants will receive a written response whether or not their application is successful.
Human rights defenders receiving grants are required to submit a short written report, and include copies of all original receipts, on completion of their project. If for any reason a project does not go ahead, or gets alternative funding, the grant must be returned to Front Line Defenders and cannot be reallocated for other work. Front Line Defenders may check that the same grant has not already been funded by other international funders. If a satisfactory report is not received on completion of the grant, the applicant will not be eligible for any further grants and will be asked to return the funding.