Thanks to you, 2015 was a landmark year for HRF. By supporting and sharing our mission to promote liberty where it’s most at risk, you helped us achieve a great deal.
As HRF enters its 10th year in 2016, our aim is to:
• Dramatically step up democracy promotion in closed societies
• Continue to aid in the liberation of prisoners of conscience
• Increase exposure of corruption and cronyism
• Expand our international education efforts
These efforts will help HRF assist more individuals suffering under tyranny; help inform the public through media appearances, lectures, and speeches; and help facilitate a meaningful dialogue in the international community to move toward action. As a recent profile of our work put it: 'HRF’s unofficial motto, it seems, is don’t just talk about human rights, roll up your sleeves and get dirty… their daily toil involves covering various corners of the globe, striving to shine a light on authoritarianism and lend a megaphone to dissidents and political prisoners.'
In 2015, our team of 15 carried out advocacy projects to promote human rights around the world, including in Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Burundi, Burma, Cuba, China, Comoros, Ecuador, Egypt, Gabon, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, the Maldives, North Korea, Russia, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Swaziland, Sudan, Venezuela, and Yemen. As you read about our programs and results in the following pages, please consider how few non-profits achieve such a level of influence with limited staff and resources.
The diversity of our programs underscores a harsh reality: dictators still rule a large percentage of the world. HRF’s mission is predicated upon the belief that freedom can be best promoted if (1) dissidents and change-makers within closed and closing societies are supported, and (2) in open societies, the problem of dictatorship is elevated to the same level in public discourse as issues like terrorism, poverty, water scarcity, pollution, and mass epidemics.
That is why we dedicate ourselves to on-the-ground projects—such as our initiatives to send outside knowledge and information into oppressed places like North Korea and Cuba—as well as focus our efforts on making sure that human rights are prioritized in media coverage and policy debates in open societies. An immensely important element of this equation is education in closed societies, and we’re promoting just that with our global guides project 'Your Human Rights.' I hope you enjoy reading about that new project in this report.