Making an impact can be difficult as an individual. That’s why Movements removes barriers to supporting human rights by creating one-to-one matches. You can be a human rights ally by matching with activists living in repressive countries and providing them with professional support in your area of expertise. At the Global Support Center, all users will have access to publicly posted offers and requests for help. Movements team members match each request to Get Help with a Resource Provider with the experience and expertise to provide the best support. A request for assistance can range from website administration to asking users to send a letter to their Congressperson and anything in between.
To ensure that users receive high-quality connections, matches are personally monitored by Movements’ team of professionals. These connections allow Requesters and Resource Providers to work together to achieve a common goal.
Click here if you want to learn more about becoming a Resource Provider.
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What is a Resource Provider?
Individuals and organizations with any skill or professional background looking to make a difference can join Movements as Resource Providers. You don’t have to be a human rights expert to be a Resource Provider on Movements. Resource Providers support human rights by providing information, services, or resources in their field of expertise that activists in repressive countries would otherwise be isolated from. Resources exclude financial or equipment provision.
For instance, a graphic designer in Lima logs on to Movements and creates a post offering their services. This graphic designer is interested in promoting women’s rights and posts an offer indicating that they want to support activists in Spanish-speaking countries. Once their offer is posted on the Global Support Center, they are connected to a Mexican gender-rights activist who would like support creating an eye-catching campaign ad that will get their message noticed.
Simply by clicking Offer Assistance and creating a post, your offer is published to Movements Global Support Center. You can choose to have your offer visible to all Movements users, or only to those whose need matches your offer. Large-scale social movements are forged through individual interactions, so there are no long-term obligations or requirements for being a Resource Provider. As a Resource Provider, you can browse the Global Support Center and view your individualized matches, but you make the final call to accept a connection or not. You can get to know users better by visiting their profile and reviewing their activities.
Why become a Resource Provider?
Making an impact can be difficult as an individual. That’s why Movements removes barriers to supporting human rights by creating one-to-one matches. Due to the number of activists in need around the world, large human rights organizations can usually only support a limited number of beneficiaries. Movements allows individuals of any professional background to directly support human rights activists who would otherwise not receive the assistance they need.
Corporations and organizations have the added incentive to promote involvement with Movements with their employees as a way to provide meaningful volunteer opportunities. Research shows that volunteer activism can improve productivity in the workplace, increase retention rates, and ultimately increase employee satisfaction.
Resource Providers can sort through requests for assistance and determine the level of time, energy, and resources they wish to commit on a case-by-case basis. For instance, if you are only interested in supporting Women’s Rights in Cuba, you will only receive requests that fit this category.
Resource Providers are only asked to give their time and expertise. Movements does not engage in exchange of money, sale or donation of equipment, or financial donations of any kind .
Additionally, all users, both Requesters and Resource Providers may remain anonymous. When creating a user profile, users may choose to use an alias. The option to use an anonymous profile creates an additional layer of security for activists in repressive countries and ensures that all users’ privacy is being protected. All user information is maintained on a secure web server and will never be shared with third parties.
Who can be a Resource Provider?
Individuals, organizations, and academic institutions are welcome to become Resource Providers. Despite the magnitude of challenges caused by human rights violations, even small steps can make a difference. Movements welcomes anyone with a skill, expertise, and a desire to be part of the solution.
How to become a Resource Provider?
- Create an account and fill in your profile, providing as much information as you are comfortable giving. An account simply gives you access to the Global Support Center so you can see what kind of requests and offers are being made.
- To get involved, post an offer to assistance.
- Be directly matched by a Movements team member, or browse other requests and offers in the Global Support Center. See something that interests you? Send a direct message or post a comment to connect with another user on your own terms.
- Work together to reach your goals or keep searching. There is no obligation.
How are matches made?
When creating your Movements profile, tell us about who you are: your skills and focus areas, countries and languages you are interested in, and any public social media accounts you would like to share. Is there a certain country that you’d like to focus on? Let us know. If you’d like to contribute to helping children, but aren’t comfortable working on cases of death penalty or arbitrary arrests, this is the space to let us know.
The more thoroughly and honestly your profile reflects you and your goals, the more effectively Requesters will be matched with you. To get started, create at least one Offer Assistance post to let activists know you are ready to provide your services. As a registered Movements user, you can create as many posts for receiving help or offering assistance as you feel comfortable committing to.
While all posts are visible in the Global Support Center, many users choose to remain anonymous. You can create matches on your own by browsing general requests uploaded onto the Global Support Center. Additionally, Movements team members monitor and create matches between you and an activist in need. Matches and notifications of potential matches arrive directly to your email inbox.
University Ambassador Program
With the creation of the University Ambassador Program (UAP), academics and students can involve themselves in a meaningful way. The UAP allows professors to include activist case studies in their coursework or organize university panels in law, human rights, politics, or foreign affairs that will help educate the next generation of activists and policy makers.
Is it secure?
The digital security of users is paramount and has been a priority at every step of the planning and development process. All user accounts, be they Resource Provider, Requester or both, are reviewed to ensure the safety and security of all users. Movements uses open source and audited code with its own code, which is available to anyone upon request. The platform uses multiple authentication methods to ensure that the identities of its users are protected.
Any content posted on Movements that is deemed malicious or intended to incite violence or intolerance will be removed from the site. Users can easily, directly, and anonymously report abusive profiles, messages or posts.
Here are some examples of how you can make a difference:
Arts: Activists often need support from graphic designers, artists, film makers and media editors to design and create images that express the magnitude of their situation and capture the hearts and minds of their audience. As was the case with Iranian cartoonist Atena Farghadani who was sent to prison for satirical depictions of members of the Iranian Parliament. In response, artists and activists from around the world used their art to protest and demanded Atena’s release. This global attention helped Atena’s sentence to be reduced and she was released after 18 months in jail.
Campaigning and Advocacy: In closed societies, such as Iran, it can be difficult for activists to connect with the broader human rights community. Resource Providers with experience in campaign design and human rights advocacy can help in planning campaigns, coordinating messaging, and making broader connections to the global community of human rights advocates. Barsha, an activist in Bangladesh, sees several organizations all focused on the same environmental issues, but there is no coordination between them. Barsha posts on Movements, seeking advice. A match is created between Barsha and another activist in Bangladesh who faced the same problem when organizing labor rights groups in their country and they exchange best practices for coordinating messaging.
Counseling/Psychology: In order to help to cope with daily, ongoing struggles, counselors and psychologists can offer their experience and act as informal supporters. Jan in Los Angeles found herself connecting with Maryam in Tehran who was fed up with the repression of women. Through friendship and counseling, Maryam found new hope in her life and gained the confidence to push the boundaries as she resisted systematic repression in her own ways.
Finance: By providing financial counseling and increasing financial literacy, Resource Providers can assist small organizations and individual activists in writing funding proposals, maintaining their books, and writing financial reports to funder institutions. Akbar in Afghanistan has a popular radio program that has music and political discussion. Having built up his audience, he wants to expand to address more human rights concerns, but he doesn't know how to grow or fund his program. He connects with Nigel in England who works in finance startups, who then provides some tips, strategies, and financial models for his media growth and expansion.
Legal: Activists often need assistance navigating the legal system in a variety of contexts. From arbitrary detention to drafting terms and conditions for a website or contract, activists need assistance from legal professionals to help understand how the legal system in their countries can affect their mission. A Syrian student activist currently living in Turkey is seeking to immigrate to Germany. The student already has friends and family living in Germany and fears for their life if they are forced out of Turkey. They post an urgent request on Movements looking for a legal advocate that can help navigate the complex immigration process. A professor at a German law school sees the request and gives advice on which documents to file and represents the student at no cost to the student.
Linguistic Editing: Iranian writers who have compelling stories to share to say but are not confident in their writing need support in editing. While this type of work is not a direct translation process, many activists simply need native speakers to look over their work to incorporate the many nuances of language. Rhula is a women’s rights activist in Saudi Arabia who wants to write about her experience with defying the now-rescinded driving restrictions. While she speaks English, her confidence in her command of the language has prevented her from writing her story for publication. She connects with Monica, a stay-at-home mom in South Africa who wants to help. What was a struggle for Rhula came second nature to Monica. They connected through Movements and communicated in English, using Google Translate when needed. Rhula’s piece was published and generated some attention among the English-speaking activist community. From time to time, Monica checks the platform to see if she can help Rhula with another project or assist others in need of editing help.
Social Media: In the absence of broader coverage of their causes, activists can use social media influencers to garner support for their movements. Retweeting a campaign, tweeting at members of Congress and media outlets, or sharing stories are just a few simple ways to support activists. Using anonymous social media accounts, many activists take great risks in order to share their stories of oppression, facing house arrest and imprisonment if caught Across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Telegram there are thousands of willing allies who help to echo these voices.
Media: Outside media coverage of activist stories is paramount in order to present activists’ stories in a powerful and authentic way to the world. For instance, a blogger in Bangladesh requests media coverage after being sentenced to death for speaking out against human rights violations in their country. Journalist and news sources are contacted through Movements to support the activist and spread their message internationally.
Political/Policy: Policy advocacy can be a powerful tool for oppressed populations. Resource Providers may assist activists through simple acts like writing to their members of Congress. This is especially helpful in fighting the discrimination facing the Baha’i community in Iran and their systematic denial from access to universities. Resource Providers who work in this field can educate policy makers about these issues and put these matters on international policy platforms. Some individuals and organizations have gone as far as to appear before Congressional committees to report on these injustices and solicit government support.
Technology: For the majority of activists, digital hygiene is not only a good practice, it is a means of avoiding arrest. Tech savvy Resource Providers can provide digital hygiene training, safe VPNs and other circumvention technologies, allowing activists to safely access social media and the outside network of information. For instance, an activist in a closed country who needs help getting information in and out of their country can be connected with experts in radio, satellite, and circumvention technology so their broadcast can avoid government detection and reach an international audience.
Translations: Many activists need their work translated into different languages to broadcast their concerns to international audiences. Experienced translators and interpreters can take on projects such as translating social media posts, letters from prisoners, survivor testimonies, wills before executions, political campaign materials, and outside news. Through Movements, an activist who needs an article translated into English prior to publication connects with a Russian translator who accepts their request. The article is successfully translated, allowing the activist’s message to reach a wider audience.
Writing: To better engage with their audience, activists often require the assistance of skilled writers to express their stories in a compelling way. Writers around the world can assist with drafting news stories, blogs, policy documents, or biographical pieces according to their area of expertise. Shifan is a tech worker in China who is frustrated by the level of government surveillance in his daily life. He has a technical understanding of how information is extracted and utilized but he cannot tell the story in a compelling way. Using Movements he connected with, Mei, a first generation Chinese American writer who is passionate about her parents’ homeland. She turns Shifan’s story into a blog that she shares on social media. Having this support allows Shifan and others like him to engage a broader audience about the challenges of government surveillance in China.