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new beginning

Project title: A New Beginning – Sectoral Innovations for a Proactive, Progressive and Influential Human Rights Civil Society

Project lead: Human Rights House Zagreb


  • Center for Peace Studies
  • Youth Initiative for Human Rights
  • Center for Peace, Nonviolence and Human Rights – Osijek
  • Human Rights House Foundation (Oslo, Norway).

Implementation period: 1 April 2021 – 31 March 2024

Total project value: EUR 199.909,82

Contact person for more information: Ivan Novosel,
Link to relevant websites:

Project summary:

The aim of this project is to increase social and political influence of civil society organizations in Croatia through the development of innovative ways of effective protection and promotion of human rights. In the past few years, Croatia has been facing a continuous decline in human rights and an increasingly difficult socio-economic situation. At the same time, institutions are passive and do not have sufficient capacity to design public policies, i.e. solutions to citizens’ problems based on human rights, as well as to tackle the increasingly complex political, social and economic challenges of today.

In response to these challenges, the project partners will work together with other civil society organizations to design new working approaches and innovative models for institutional and legal advocacy, support for victims of human rights violations and public communication and mobilization of citizens. The project is based on partnership, participation and lessons learned. Objective analysis of challenges and problems in the sector and joint design of solutions and concrete steps will be used to build trust, encourage synergy and establish sustainable, long-term and structural cooperation among civil society organizations.

The project is based on the interrelation of public advocacy and direct work on the protection of human rights and work with vulnerable social groups and communities. The project activities will strengthen the capacities for institutional advocacy and lobbying for human rights protection towards domestic and international institutions through education, training, networking and resource sharing. Also, the capacities of civil society organizations for legal advocacy will be built and strengthened through education and training, but also networking of legal professionals from civil society organizations with lawyers and members of the academic community who are interested in human rights. Project activities will also contribute to strengthening the capacities of civil society for public communication and direct work with local communities, but also for joint efforts to mobilize citizens in order to protect and promote human rights.

This project, through the joint efforts of project partners and involved civil society organizations, creates the necessary preconditions for change of paradigm regarding the work of human rights organizations from reactive to proactive and progressive, i.e. from defending acquired rights to their further promotion.

The project is funded by the Program of the Active Citizens Fund in Croatia through financial mechanisms of the European Economic Area and the Kingdom of Norway.

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