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DefendDefenders Call for Applications – Regional Training of Trainers in Physical & Digital Security

Call for Applications for human rights defenders from Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somaliland to join the TOT program 2023.


DefendDefenders was established in 2005 as the East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project and registered as a foreign Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in Uganda. DefendDefenders exists to strengthen the work of Human Rights Defenders in the sub-region by reducing their vulnerability to the risk of persecution and by enhancing their capacity to effectively defend human rights. The core mandate of DefendDefenders is to promote the safety, security, and wellbeing of HRDs. To achieve this, DefendDefenders’ work has to date focused on protection and security management, capacity building, technology development, as well as advocacy, research, and communications. DefendDefenders establishes and supports national coalitions of HRDs in various countries through which HRDs can come together and claim their rights at the national level. 


DefendDefenders serves as the Secretariat of the East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Network (EHAHRD-Net) representing thousands of HRDs and their organisations. DefendDefenders draws its membership from Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia (together with Somaliland), South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. The Network also serves as the secretariat for AfricanDefenders (Pan-African Human Rights Defenders Network.) Further, DefendDefenders holds a consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) as well as observer status with the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights. 

DefendDefenders is therefore delighted to offer a training of trainers in physical and digital security for human rights defenders in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somaliland. The training will equip HRDs with knowledge, skills, and methodology to build the capacities of other HRDs in their home countries in threat and risk assessment, utilize digital tools as well as develop security and safety plans. Participants must be willing to learn in a fast-paced program and should have the capacity and commitment to maximize their benefit from the program. 

 Scope of the training:

The physical component of the training will entail;

  • Definitions of key concepts in security management (HRD, safety, security and Protection)
  • Context analysis (HRD Context analysis, Factors and Actors analysis).
  • Handling and dealing with security Incidents.
  • Threat and risk assessments procedures.
  •  Security planning and simulations. 

The digital security training will entail; 

  • Device assessments. 
  • Internet usage and relevance of VPNs.
  • Back-up strategy
  • Online safety, passwords and password managers.
  • Account security: Two Factor Authentication.
  • Email encryption.
  • Mobile communications and simulations

Eligibility criteria:  

  • Applicants must be based in the following countries: Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Ethiopia, South Sudan and Somaliland.
  • Area of focus mainly promotion and protection of human rights.
  • Must have attended a Physical and Digital security training and can prove it by mentioning the Organisation that equipped them with these skills.  
  • Applicants should be proficient in English (written, spoken and comprehension).


All costs related to the training will be covered by DefendDefenders.

Selection Process

Selection into the program is highly competitive. We encourage you to apply early and put your best foot forward.  

Please fill out either if interested in sharpening your skills in Digital Security OR if interested in sharpening your skills in physical Security.

PS: The training is one but will have two classes, one for physical security and one for Digital Security. The last two days of the ToT will be for simulations where participants are given a platform to practice presentation skills before other participants.

Important dates

  • Deadline for Applications: 5th July 2023
  • Selected candidates will be notified by:14th July 2023

For any inquiries, please contact [email protected] and [email protected].   

The TOT program is made possible with the support of Bread for the world.