The EMHRF has been a member of the Human Rights Funders Network (HRFN) since 2010.

The HRFN is a network of international foundations and is currently composed of more than 800 members representing approximately 300 organizations that provide human rights-related grants around the world and that is committed to advancing human rights around the world through effective philanthropy.

More information on the HRFN:


Activities of the Foundation within the HRFN:


  • HRFN Telebriefings:

- The Foundation organised, with the Urgent Action Fund, a telebriefing on “Promoting Human Rights in Gaza - The Role of Human Rights Funders” on December 6, 2012 with advocates from Gaza and funders active in the region to discuss how international funders might play a role in advancing human rights in this difficult context, in the immediate and long terms.

The purposes of the discussions were:

    • Scan the existing and current human rights situation in Gaza and the response of the international community;
    • Highlight the human rights priorities identified by and the responses of local human rights activists;
    • Explore the role of, and effective strategies and entry points for, international human rights funders to address the human rights needs in Gaza in the immediate and long terms.


- In February 2013, the Foundation organised a telebriefing on "Egypt in Transition: Opportunities and Challenges for Human Rights Funders" surveying the political and legal developments in Egypt and exploring human rights priorities, gaps, opportunities and entry points for funders.


- The Foundation also organised a telebriefing on “Promoting Human Rights in Syria: The Role of Human Rights Funders” on March 21st, 2013 with funders active in the region to explore how human rights grantmakers can effectively and strategically support Syrian activists and civil society organizations amid an escalating and multifaceted war. With this perspective, the discussion adressed issues such as:

    • Outlining the current work and challenges faced by Syrian human rights defenders;
    • Exploring the priorities, opportunities and caveats for human rights funders in this specific context,
    • Analysing the state of international support for human rights and civil society inside and outside the country.


- Within the framework of the working group on human rights defenders in the HRFN, the EMHRF also co-organized a telebriefing on “Promoting Integrated Security through Psychosocial Support to Human Rights Defenders on October 30, 2013.


  • HRFN semi-annual Conferences:

The Foundation took part in the HRFN semi-annual Conference for the first time in July 2009, and has since then participated in each one of these, taking place alternatively in San Francisco in January and in NYC in July.

At the conferences, the Foundation organized discussion sessions on:

    • Challenges to funding human rights defenders in emergency situations: From a regional perspective to sharing global experiences” (2010)
    • Supporting Human Rights Defenders in Urgent Situations: Global Perspectives for Funders” (2011)
    • Protecting Rights Defenders in Times of Transition: Lessons from Latin America and the Arab World” (2012)
    • Security of Human Rights defenders: supporting grantee safety” ( 2013)
    • "Shifting Political Contexts" ( 2013)


  • Human Rights Defenders' Working Group:
Together with the Fund for Global Human Rights (FGHR), the Urgent Action Fund for Women Human Rights (UAF) and the American Jewish World Service (AJWS), the Foundation is a leading member of the Human Rights Defenders’ working group, established in July 2011 within the HRFN.

The mission of the working group is:

    • To provide the space to discuss different political realities and how these affect the work of human rights defenders.
    • To be the place for coordination and resource sharing on specific issues and programs related to human rights defenders. Donors and human rights defenders could thus have access to mechanisms they had not developed or didn’t know about.
    • To develop Guidelines/Principles/Best Practices/Pro-active models for Grant makers to maximize the effectiveness of donors in ensuring the safety of activists, as well as guarantee that they are aware of the resources available to them in times of need. Advised by HRDs, the working group will prioritize prevention, protection and funding needs.
    • To serve as a platform to leverage interest on human rights defenders issues to funders outside of the human rights circle.

In 2015 the working group re-edited its directory of emergency response mechanisms to assist human rights defenders and NGOs in need of urgent support in the Arab world and elsewhere.