Advocacy, research, communication and networking for protection of Women Human Rights Defenders

The advocacy program has multiple purposes including raising visibility of the violence and risks WHRDs face, mobilizing solidarity to increase protection for WHRDs at risk, valuing WHRDs work and activism. Our advocacy actions at national, regional and international levels, will make the voices of WHRDs heard at all levels. This will in turn ensure that human rights protection mechanisms and initiatives address WHRDs’ situations and promote their integrated protection.

The program interventions include;

  • Research and documentation; We document cases and gather information in order to generate gender focused information and analysis against women defenders.
  • Building and Strengthening regional protective networks for WHRDs; Given the context of exclusion, discrimination & gender inequality experienced by WHRDs that many WHRDs do not have strong safety networks to rely on in the face of these risks. The Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda (WHRDN-U) focuses its work on building and promoting safety networks for WHRDs operating in different regional (rural grass root communities) in Uganda. The regional protective WHRD networks have been created in Northern, Western, Eastern and Southern regions of Uganda.
  • We engage in communication to support advocacy, dialogue, rapid response and encourage solidarity when in the face of attacks against WHRDs in Uganda, thereby contributing to their protection.
  • Publish statements related to protection of WHRDs aimed at national, regional and international authorities
  • Advocacy on policy by engaging with lawmakers and policy makers to gain support for conducive gender responsive policies to the protection of WHRDs in Uganda.
  • Networking and Partnerships is a key aspect of Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda’s advocacy is creation of networks and linkages with stakeholders and other actors.
  • Media and communications, through engagement with media personnel, electronic media, our website and social media platforms. These are important tools to reach and sensitize the public.
WHRDNU was privileged to have attended the 2nd African Women Human Rights Defenders-Feminist Republik Festival for African Women Human Rights Defenders held in Naivasha, Kenya from 28th-30th November, 2022.
A conversation with the cultural and religious leaders on the informal justice systems and the challenges women face in accessing these systems.
Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda was honored to participate in the meeting organized by LANDNET Uganda on the 24th March 2023 at Materdoom Hotel on the analysis of the Feminist Principles and Women Land Rights (WLRM) in Uganda.


Snapshots of the launch of WHRDN-U, 29th November, 2018

Photos at the launch of the WHRDN-U Jointly with the UN Office on Human Rights, members of the Diplomatic Missions, UN Women graced the event on 29th November 2018.


Snapshots of the networking event on 6th march, 2019.

This event was in commemoration of women’s day and event that is for 8th march annually. Some of the WHRDs sharing their experiences of threats, risks and vulnerabilities they faced due to their human rights work and after WHRDs pose for a group photo after the networking event on 6th March, 2019.



Snapshots of  the commemoration of the day of the WHRDs 29th November, 2019


Snapshots of the media engagements


National networking through participation in various fora/ events and recognition by partners

Snapshots of the policy advocacy at National, Regional and International Level


Snapshots of networking events

On 1st and 2nd July 2020, the WHRDNU secretariat together with the head of the Disability Women’s defenders thematic working group and Albertine regional focal person conducted a field visit in Hoima, Kagadi and Masindi. The visit supported;
-Processes of coordination among diversity of WHRDs
-Women defenders battling oil extractive projects
-HIV/AIDs women defenders
-Women Defenders with disabilities
-Women defenders on women’s political participation
Fruitful discussions were held on how and where to seek support, strengthen local networks and foster linkages to ensure holistic protection of WHRDs

The Women Human Rights Defenders that hosted the WHRDN-U during a field visit from 8th-10th July 2020 in Kapchorwa, Kween and Mbale districts. They have led campaigns on Anti- Female Genital Mutilation, protected the land rights of the Bennet ethic minority groups and protected LGBTQ rights. The Women Defenders shared their livid experiences of risks,attacks and threats in their communities, how they are organizing, the change they are working towards and provided insightful recommendations to WHRDN-U on how to ensure safety of women defenders in the rural isolated communities.

Luncheon with with members of the Parliamentary Human Rights Committee and to discuss how the Human Rights Defenders Protection Bill can be gender responsive and protect Women Human Rights Defenders.

On August 13th 2020, Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda presented a position paper at the Human Rights Defenders protections Bill Consultative meeting, advocating for gender sensitivity while drafting the law.

9/11/2020, Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda is honored to engage in a National Consultative meeting on Election for Human Rights Defenders and Advocates organized by Legal Aid Service Providers Network-Laspnet to discuss strategies on the protection of WHRDs amidst the 2021 elections.

On 16th September 2020 ,Women Human Rights Defenders Network Uganda  met with The Women’s Probono Initiative , Executive Director ,Prima Kwagala and the Programs Officer Achola Elizabeth and held discussions on how to provide legal aid support to WHRDs attacked with a feminist perspective.

WHRDN-U members meet with Women Probono Initiative Executive Director, Prima Kwagala and Programs officer, Achola Elizabeth ith
WHRDN-U members meet with Women Probono Initiative Executive Director, Prima Kwagala and Programs officer, Achola Elizabeth























On 29th November 2021, WHRDN-U held their 2nd Annual General Meeting at Protea Hotel in Kampala, under the theme: Leaving No One Behind: For Protection, Recognition and Wellness of WHRDS. During the meeting, the Board members presented the following reports to the network members.

  • The Annual Progress Report 2021
  • The Audited Reports
  • The Previous Minutes

Photos of the Annual General Meeting 2021


Courtesy visit to African Center for Treatment and Rehabilitation for Torture Victims. ACTV Uganda on March 14th 2022.

Courtesy visit to Sexual Minorities Uganda offices on March 2022 to understand the Protection services they provide in case of attacks to WHRDs especially those defending LBQT rights.

Visit at the Defend Defenders offices on March 9th 2022 to discuss opportunities for collaboration in advocating for improved safety,security & wellbeing of WHRDs & HRDs with disabilities.



Acholi Regional Women Human Rights Regional Network met with Acholi Woman city MP, Betty Aol in Gulu City on 2nd may 2022.

Women Human Rights defenders from Karamoja region visited and stood in solidarity with peace mediators in Kotido district on 18th March 2022.




On March 15th 2022, WHRDNU spent a wonderful day, spending time at SMUG offices and well received by DR. Frank Mugisha.


On 25th/3/2022 West Nile Regional Women Human Rights Defenders Network paid a courtesy visit to UNHCR Arua offices.