IN 2012, HUMANITY UNITED CELEBRATED THE COMING OF AGE OF MANY LONGTIME PROJECTS. Unlike the previous year, when much of our programming responded to environmental shifts, 2012 marked a period when many of Humanity United’s programs entered a new era: some took center stage at a national level in the United States, while others, such as the Alliance to End Slavery & Trafficking (ATEST), marked five years of impact. Entering our seventh year of grant-making in 2012, we also began to note our core competencies as a mid-sized human rights foundation: Our investment to build knowledge in our fields of work, commitment to connecting changemakers, and ability to foster new leaders. Here, we profile six program activities—or clusters of work—that achieved significant milestones in 2012, and exemplify our foundation’s core competencies.
Information in this section reflects data provided to Humanity United from December 2012 to March 2013.
We believe there are solutions to the world’s most intractable problems—some already exist but require support, while others remain undiscovered. We seek to unlock these barriers by investing in projects that expand and share knowledge within our fields of work. This helps us to facilitate sustainable solutions to building peace and advancing human freedom, and be an informed partner.
SLAVERY- TAINTED COMMODITIES
STRATEGY: Rule of Law & Good Governance
PROGRAM: Global Solutions
One of Humanity United’s primary priorities since its earliest days has been helping governments and institutions—including the United States—in their efforts to prevent atrocities and, when necessary, respond more effectively to them.
In 2012 Humanity United, along with many genocide-prevention advocates, celebrated a historic milestone when President Obama made a landmark speech on the need to prevent and respond to atrocities, introducing critical new initiatives.
The timeline on this page captures key highlights in the field building up to this event, beginning in 2007 when Humanity United began supporting two instrumental projects aimed at promoting genocide prevention as a national U.S. priority, and helping to develop practical policy recommendations to enhance the capacity of the U.S. government to respond to emerging threats of genocide and mass atrocities—the Genocide Prevention Task Force (GPTF) and the Mass Atrocities Response Operations (MARO) project.
Humanity United issues first grant to Mass Atrocities Response Operations (MARO) project, bringing together academics and military leaders to think through how the armed services can help to prevent and halt genocide and mass atrocities.
Genocide Prevention Task Force launched, funded by Humanity United.
Barack Obama elected president of the United States.
Genocide Prevention Task Force report released to public.
“Genocide and mass atrocities also threaten core U.S. national interests.”
Oxfam America and Friends Committee for National Legislation (FCNL) convene an NGO working group to promote the recommendations of the GPTF report. Humanity United participates. Group later becomes known as the Prevention and Protection Working Group (PPWG).
Vice President Joe Biden says he and President Barack Obama believe that “preventing genocide is not only a representation of who we are as a people but also a very high national priority.”
U.S. House of Representatives passes the House Foreign Relations Authorization Act, requiring the Obama Administration to submit a report “outlining specific plans for the development of a government-wide strategy and the strengthening of United States civilian capacities for preventing genocide and mass atrocities against civilians.”
*Recommended by GPTF
Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair raises mass killings as a threat to U.S. moral and national security interests, during annual threat-assessment testimony to Congress.
*Recommended by GPTF
President Obama appoints David Pressman as the first National Security Council Director for War Crimes and Atrocities.
*Recommended by GPTF
MARO released to public.
Obama Administration releases the National Security Strategy, which includes a section on the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities.
*Recommended by GPTF
Complex Crises Fund (CCF) created to rapidly respond to emerging crises before violence erupts. A GPTF recommendation, the PPWG lobbied for the creation of such a flexible contingency account and its full funding.
*Recommended by GPTF
Defense Department (DOD) begins the Mass Atrocities Prevention and Response Operations project (MAPRO) to integrate mass atrocity prevention and response considerations into DOD strategies, plans, and operational requirements. The goal is to have a range of options readily available for the President in a mass atrocity situation.
State Department releases the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, which identifies conflict prevention, including genocide and mass atrocities prevention, as a key tenet of the department’s agenda, and establishes the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO).
“Such extreme violence [genocide and mass atrocities] undermines our security by fueling state and regional instability, prolonging the effects of violence on societies, and entrenching murderous regimes that perpetuate other threats.”
Obama Administration releases Presidential Study Directive 10 (PSD-10), a comprehensive review aimed at strengthening the United States’ ability to prevent mass atrocities:
“In answering these questions, the interagency review shall consider the recommendations of relevant bipartisan and expert studies, including the recommendations of the bipartisan Genocide Prevention Task Force, co-chaired by former Secretaries Madeleine K. Albright and William Cohen.” (PSD-10)
Per the QDDR, the State Department establishes the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations. Known as the CSO, its mission is to strengthen U.S. national security by breaking cycles of violent conflict and mitigating crisis in priority countries.
Humanity United and the Center for American Progress release a white paper on conflict prevention training in the U.S. government. Recommendations to increase training in U.S. foreign affairs agencies are consistent with the GPTF report, and training as a priority area is later adopted by the Atrocities Prevention Board (APB) after its establishment in 2012.
*Recommended by GPTF
Mass atrocities are again raised as an intelligence priority and as a threat to U.S. national security interests in the Director for National Intelligence’s Annual Worldwide Threat Assessment Testimony.
*Recommended by GPTF
“Mass Atrocities Prevention Response Operations: A Policy Planning Handbook” is released to the public. The handbook is designed to be a reference for policymakers to monitor, prevent, and, if necessary, respond to genocide and other mass atrocity situations. It addresses topics promulgated in the August 2011 PSD-10 as well as recommendations contained in the GPTF report.
*Recommended by GPTF
Humanity United begins funding the Prevention and Protection Working Group through the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL).
President Obama issues landmark speech on atrocity prevention and introduces critical new anti-genocide initiatives, including the formal announcement of the Atrocities Prevention Board (APB).
GPTF Members: Where are they now?
GPTF and expert group members were not in government at the time of the drafting of the report. Eight of the 52 former expert group members were later recruited to serve senior positions in the Obama Administration—no doubt helping to advance the task force’s atrocity-prevention recommendations.
U.S. Permanent Representative on the Council of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)
Deputy Assistant Secretary, International Organization Affairs, U.S. State Department
Current Ambassador to Russia
Special Envoy to Sudan 2011-2013
Assistant Secretary, Population, Refugees, and Migration, State Department
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Partnership Strategy and Stability Operations
Deputy Administrator, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
Assistant Administrator for the Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Affairs, USAID
Bipartisan support has been key to elevating atrocity prevention as a national security priority and helping to push key GPTF reforms forward. Over the last five years, advocacy organizations like the Prevention and Protection Working Group (PPWG) have continued to ensure bipartisan support for these measures, despite shifting foreign policy priorities.
At the urging of the PPWG, Sen. Russ Feingold (R-Wis.) introduced Senate Concurrent Resolution 71, which encouraged efforts to develop the government’s approach to prevent and mitigate genocide and mass atrocities. Citing the GPTF report, it passed unanimously in December.
The PPWG organized a bipartisan letter signed by 29 senators urging President Obama to prevent and respond to mass atrocities—demonstrating strong bipartisan support in Congress and clearing the way for the administration’s announcement of new atrocity-prevention initiatives.
PPWG sends letter with 25 signatories making recommendations to the Atrocities Prevention Board (APB).
STRATEGY: Markets & Business
PROGRAM: Corporate Engagement
In the 2011 Performance Report, we introduced Humanity United’s “virtuous cycle” approach to our corporate engagement program. Here, we follow-up on what we identified as our immediate priority in the cycle: identifying and removing slavery-tainted commodities from international supply chains.
Multinational corporations have a unique role in helping eradicate modern-day slavery. One critical action they can take is to identify and address exploitation in agricultural and extractive commodities deep within their international supply chains, because this is the level where the most severe instances of forced labor and exploitation occur.
Following an extensive two-year research process comparing 25 slavery-tainted commodities, Humanity United identified three priority products: gold, palm oil, and shrimp. We chose to focus our work on these three commodities because we believe they represent the industries in which slavery is not only most prevalent, but also where we and others can have the most impact. Researching, mapping, and exposing where forced labor exists in these commodity chains comprised the bulk of our 2012 grant-making in the Corporate Engagement program.
Click on the Commodities Map to the right to learn more about this work.
TARGET: CONSUMER BEHAVIOR
Grantee: Belden Russonello »
Foundation-led research to better understand U.S. consumer attitudes toward forced labor in common goods: gold, palm oil, shrimp.
Grantee: Verité »
Conducted desk and field research on forced labor and human trafficking in illegal gold mining in Peru.
Grantee: Solidaridad »
Launched Fairtrade-Fairmined (FTFM) gold in the Netherlands in May 2012. Has developed partnerships with jewelers committed to sourcing FTFM gold, including Steltman Jewellers (Dutch crown jeweler) and Bibi van der Velden.
Thailand / Bangladesh
Grantee: Accenture »
Supply chain and global market research. Resulting report intended to be used as a tool to inform NGOs and other partners.
Grantee: Environmental Justice Foundation »
As part of the “From Farm to Fork: Ending labor rights violations in shrimp production” project, Humanity United funded primary and secondary research into the shrimp industry in Bangladesh. Two films and two reports are scheduled for release in 2013.
Image courtesy of the Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF)
TARGET: PALM OIL
As part of a commodities-focused reporting grant, produced a piece aired on the “PBS NewsHour” on how the growing demand for palm oil—commonly found in U.S. processed foods—is increasing the demand for migrant child labor.
Malaysia / Indonesia
TARGET: PALM OIL
TARGET: PALM OIL
ILRF has partnered with Indonesian NGO Sawit Watch to conduct groundbreaking research—including direct interviews with workers—into forced and child labor on palm oil plantations in some of the most remote areas of Indonesia.
Report release targeted for June 2013
We work with public policymakers, researchers, and human rights advocates to foster leadership, promote dialogue, and help changemakers share information and ideas in ways that amplify their impact. With collective impact as a guide, we leverage our passion, influence, and grant-making to help coordinate key actors and facilitate collaboration and cooperation for the common good.
PORTFOLIO: Anti-Slavery / Peacebuilding
STRATEGY: Ideas & Innovations
PROGRAM: Global Solutions / U.S. Movement Building
In 2012 Humanity United announced two partnerships with the Obama Administration aimed at creating solutions to some of the 21st century’s most intractable problems. The Partnership for Freedom looks to find new solutions to the challenge of modern-day slavery in the United States, while the Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention looks to find new, technology-based solutions to the tragedies of mass rape, killings, and other atrocities.
Both initiatives are important examples of our core commitment to collaboration, alignment, and collective impact as the most effective ways to tackle large-scale and hard-to-solve human problems. They also signal our support for partnerships between public and private entities based on our belief in the benefits of combining the reach of governments with the flexibility of private philanthropic dollars.
Announced as part of President Obama’s broader atrocity-prevention strategy, the goal of this joint project between Humanity United and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is to develop innovative solutions to five specific atrocity-prevention challenges, as well as to educate and engage the broader technology community on atrocity-prevention issues.
The first round launched in October 2012, awarding prizes of up to $5,000 for individuals and groups who proposed the most innovative ideas for how to better identify third-party enablers of atrocities and how to better document evidence of atrocities. Applicants from 22 countries submitted 88 innovative technology proposals responding to two challenges: identifying, spotlighting and deterring third-party enablers of atrocities; or documenting evidence of atrocities to hold perpetrators accountable. Seven innovations won a combination of first place prizes of $5,000; second place prizes of $3,000; or third place prizes of $2,000.
On Sept. 25, 2012, President Obama gave a historic speech on human trafficking—one of the most significant speeches on slavery in the United States since President Abraham Lincoln. In it, President Obama announced Humanity United’s Partnership for Freedom—a joint initiative with the White House, the Department of Justice, and other federal agencies—to surface, support, and scale new solutions to some of the persistent challenges facing those who work to prevent human trafficking in the Unites States, and those who care for trafficking survivors in communities across the country.
The $6 million challenge will launch in 2013 and will aim to identify new approaches in three core areas—housing resources and housing opportunities for formerly trafficked individuals, comprehensive care management for victims of trafficking, and engagement with the law enforcement community to identify and support victims of trafficking. The challenge will award grants to the most innovative approaches that can be evaluated and scaled nationally. Humanity United is leading challenge design and outreach, and is working with the U.S. government to identify new private and corporate partners, including Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Women Initiative, which is a founding supporter of this project.
Develop technologies to better identify, spotlight, and deter intentional or unintentional third-party enablers of atrocities (e.g. non-state actors such as multinational corporations, financial institutions, or those who provide logistical support).
1ST PLACE: $5,000
Electronic Component Validation Tool For New Product Development
Le-Marie Thompson; Founder, Nettadonna, LLC; Bowie, MD
Develop technologies that can enable the documentation of relevant evidence that may be used to deter or hold perpetrators accountable, while minimizing the risk posed to those collecting this information.
1ST PLACE: $5,000
Physicians for Human Rights, in collaboration with Datadyne and InformaCam; Cambridge, MA
Create a model to help identify community-level risk factors that make communities more or less likely to experience acts of violence, leveraging existing public datasets on national and subnational violence (e.g. Armed Conflict Location and Events Dataset).
Improve secure communications with and between conflict-affected communities or those at imminent risk.
Develop simple, affordable, trainable, and scalable technologies to allow NGOs and human rights activists to gather more information—and/or verify existing information—from hard-to-access areas (i.e. areas where governments intentionally try to prohibit outside access).
WATCH: Judges discuss the Tech Challenge with winners of the Enablers and Capture challenges, and talk about emerging intersections between technology and human rights.
Hear more about the Partnership for Freedom from Humanity United’s President & CEO Randy Newcomb and Catherine Chen, a director of Investments and partnership lead
At 2:25 mentions Humanity United
Humanity United’s Randy Newcomb participated in a Sept. 27th White House Google+ Hangout on the global fight against modern slavery and the Obama Administration's efforts to combat human trafficking at home and abroad.
STRATEGY: Voice & Will / Rule of Law & Good Governance
PROGRAM: U.S. Movement-Building
Like many who are new to the U.S. anti-human-trafficking issue, Humanity United’s early leaders quickly observed in the mid-2000s that the emerging movement was ripe with experts and ideas but, due to the complex nature of the field, was fragmented and missing the “sticky” relationships that make movements effective.
What we refer to as “modern-day slavery” is an umbrella term for a complex phenomenon, ranging from sex trafficking to forced labor, from exploiting lawful workers in the construction trade to the use of foreign labor recruiters that cause debt bondage. Definitions, critical to developing a coherent policy, were divisive, and service providers, each individually focused on particular manifestations of the crime both within and outside of the United States, competed for limited federal resources.
As a nascent funder in this arena, Humanity United was eager to support a platform to bring U.S. anti-slavery leaders together—creating a common ground for practitioners across the spectrum in a number of geographic locations. The opportunity: To build a policy-focused coalition to advance U.S. anti-trafficking efforts.
Initially launched as a pilot project in 2007, the Alliance to End Slavery & Trafficking (ATEST) has grown to become the pre-eminent voice in Washington, D.C. policy discussions on all aspects of modern-day slavery. Composed of 12 member organizations—focused individually on topics ranging from forced labor in Florida’s tomato fields to sex trafficking and debt bondage in India—ATEST has achieved tremendous progress throughout its first five years.
The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) is the cornerstone of federal anti-trafficking efforts. Originally adopted in 2000, this critical piece of legislation must be continually renewed, and ATEST has been at the forefront of efforts to make it stronger, more comprehensive, and more effective.
2008: Successfully ensured reauthorization, the most significant renewal since original bill of 2000. More than 90 percent of ATEST’s amendments were included in the final bill.
2010–12: Anticipating partisan blockage, achieved 57 Senate sponsors (40 Democrat, 15 Republican, and 2 Independents) for renewal. Ultimately, renewal lagged and TVPA expired that year.
2013: Packaged within the Violence Against Women Act, the TVPA was ultimately renewed. Read more »
During President Barack Obama’s historic Sept. 25, 2012 speech on modern-day slavery, he announced several initiatives advocated by ATEST, including:
Full speech from President Obama at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, Sept. 25, 2012
Five years ago, most advocates focused primarily on reauthorizing the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Beginning in FY 2010, ATEST members broadened their outlook to federal appropriations, and successfully advocated a historic $12 million increase in federal anti-trafficking funds. ATEST members also worked hard to ensure that the issue of human trafficking was visibly higher on the radar of those in charge of the federal appropriations process.
Number of times “human trafficking” or “trafficking in persons” mentioned in house and senate appropriations committee reports:
We believe in the power of ordinary individuals to bring about extraordinary change. We seek to support the most credible, capable, and creative ideas, people, and organizations in our fields of work. Our goal is to enable leaders to emerge, no matter where they are, and give them the tools to make an impact on some of the most difficult challenges facing our world today.
STRATEGY: Voice & Will
PROGRAM: U.S. Movement Building
The Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking (CAST) is one of Humanity United’s earliest grantees, and a longtime partner as one of the founding members of ATEST. The Los Angeles–based service provider—one of the country’s first to focus on human trafficking survivors—is also a powerful advocate in the state of California and inside the beltway of Washington, D.C.
“CAST’s work is directly informed by the real experiences of the clients it serves. Through a unique organizing approach, CAST launched the Survivor Advisory Caucus, a one-of-a-kind leadership-development program where members of the Caucus organize to speak publicly on behalf of all survivors of trafficking.”
Launched in 2003, a time when executive director Kay Buck noticed an absence in survivor voices in critical advocacy discussions, the caucus provides a space for CAST graduates to transform themselves into advocates, organizers, and leaders. Much like the individualized support they received as CAST clients, caucus members are provided with a range of options, from leadership development to media training.
“CAST is known for a survivor-centered approach to ending modern day slavery. And what that means is we work with survivors in a less traditional way,” said Kay Buck, executive director. “We see them as partners in informing the overall anti-slavery movement. And so we provide direct services to them—shelter, legal services, case management—but the whole time we're really taking a more individualized approach to help them achieve their goals and rebuild their lives.”
Survivor experiences inform CAST’s advocacy initiatives, and caucus members have taken on leading roles, from Sacramento to Washington, D.C. The caucus has inspired other survivors to speak out, evolving to support the National Survivor Network—a scaled-up version of the caucus to support survivors across the United States. Members are incredibly diverse: U.S. citizens and foreign nationals who have experienced a variety of forms of human trafficking and modern-day slavery.
“It’s gratifying to see that it’s really taken off, considering that it was so controversial to empower survivors in that particular way back in 2003,” Buck said. “That tells us that things have really changed. There’s more openness to organizations admitting that we don’t know it all. That we really do need the advice and expertise of the people who are impacted most by our services, by our programs, and, most importantly, I think, by the policies that we’re all trying to create in Washington and, for us, in Sacramento.”
Hear from survivor caucus members why they became advocates, how CAST helped their transition, and their greatest accomplishments.
Caucus members successfully lobbied the Department of Homeland Services to issue regulations allowing victims to adjust to a green card status—a critical, but previously unfulfilled provision of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000—allowing survivors to become thriving members of our communities with the freedom to visit family and obtain jobs.
Caucus member and survivor Flor Molina successfully lobbied for the passage of the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010, a law requiring big manufacturing and retail businesses based in the state to disclose their efforts to ensure that slavery and forced labor are not used in their supply chains.
Survivor Organizer Ima Matul, a former CAST client, was recognized by President Barack Obama in his historic speech on human trafficking on Sept. 25, 2012.
Ima Matul featured on “Katie” (January 14, 2013)
STRATEGY: Voice & Will / Rule of Law & Good Governance
PROGRAM: Liberia, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Social change requires communities to be both informed and engaged. Elevating voice and will in the places where we work is a core pillar in Humanity United’s three-pronged strategy.
One of Humanity United’s primary objectives is developing highly functional and well-coordinated networks or civil society organizations in the countries where we operate. As a U.S.-based foundation, it’s often most effective to work with partners on the ground, who provide additional capacity to identify, vet, and manage local grantees.
Since 2008, Humanity United has partnered with funders who have an on-the-ground presence in Liberia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to support civil society organizations in these countries. These partnerships have also helped us develop clear lessons-learned on how best to support local organizations in conflict and post-conflict environments.
Learning: Begin with broad civil society funding to identify key levers
EXAMPLE: EASTERN CONGO INITIATIVE (ECI)
COUNTRY: DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO
Our engagement with ECI began when Humanity United was still developing its DRC country strategy. Founded in March 2010 by Ben Affleck, with support from Humanity United, the ECI is a grant-making, capacity-building, and advocacy organization entirely focused on working with and for the people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The partnership with ECI provided an excellent opportunity to connect with key civil society actors on the ground. As our country strategy continues to mature and evolve, supporting Congolese civil society will remain a key part of our overall DRC strategy.
However, our civil society support also expanded in 2012 to focus on community initiatives that contribute to specific program objectives—specifically, those that help civil society members engage the Congolese government on the way it manages the country’s natural resources and increases the amount of information publicly available on the subject. To that end, we also supported other complimentary initiatives including:
Build monitoring and evaluation capacity by helping to create reporting tools
Civil society groups often need assistance to develop their capacity to measure and report on their activities and, most importantly, their impact. Such was the case in Liberia, where Humanity United provided both funding and technical assistance to local organizations via our partner TrustAfrica, an African foundation with staff in Liberia who helped us to identify and support promising grantees. Reporting is critical to third-party funders like Humanity United and to securing support from additional funders, and reporting efficacy varied widely among our TrustAfrica grantees. So we worked with local staff to create standardized reporting, assessment, and learning templates that could help local organizations better track their impact. This was an iterative process, which relied heavily on TrustAfrica’s ability to understand the changing needs of our local partners.
These new reporting procedures were introduced in September 2012, via a one-day workshop in Montserrado County, and are currently in use with 10 grantees. These procedures have also improved TrustAfrica’s ability to evaluate their grantees and assess their work in the field.
A working group prepares to present their views for inclusion in the constitution (photo courtesy Justice Africa)
Grantee: Justice Africa
Justice Africa is a regional organization that supports peacebuilding and civil society initiatives in South Sudan. Humanity United funded Justice Africa’s work in a joint project with the South Sudan Law Society to support effective South Sudanese civil society participation in the creation and development of their new country’s first permanent constitution. Over the course of 2012, the project established a civil society expert resource group, and led state-level dialogues and training with local civil society groups across South Sudan.
Impact: Citizen input in South Sudan’s constitution
In part as a result of the Justice Africa program, an engaged and empowered civil society has been able to advocate for greater representation in the creation of a national constitution, leading to an expansion of representation: from a single initial representative, to six civil society representatives participating in the drafting committee. These civil society representatives will play a meaningful role in drafting the document, and their participation remains vital to assuring the South Sudan constitution reflects the voice and will of the public.