The Fund supports approximately sixty organizations in Latin America through its programs in Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras. All three of these countries have suffered from intense levels of violence that have been exacerbated by corruption in their justice systems, lack of rule of law, and impunity for crimes committed by powerful state and non-state actors, including organized crime.
Vulnerable populations bear the brunt of abuses. Migrants disappear at alarming rates. Women, especially female human rights defenders, suffer disproportionately from attacks, defamation, and criminalization. Ill-conceived development projects threaten the rights and livelihoods of rural farmers and indigenous communities. Given the many shared human rights challenges in these countries, the Fund has sought to strengthen its grant-making in the region by supporting efforts to build coalitions and coordinate strategies among our Latin America grantees. Our grantees defending the rights of rural and indigenous communities are jointly collecting evidence to build a case against a Canadian mining company that caused grave health harms in communities in Honduras, Mexico, and Guatemala. Several of our grantees in Mexico and Guatemala have pressed for better regional protections of women human rights defenders. Across all three countries, human rights organizations are pressing for change using the Inter-American Human Rights system, amplifying the regional demand for accountability and justice.
In Latin America we’ve created mutually supportive networks where organizations connect, share and grow more effective. As a result, our investments in individual organizations are having a greater impact.