Strengthening the Role of CSOs in Human Rights Reporting, Monitoring and Advocacy

What is the project about

 An elderly woman reads a publication during a human rights event held in Harare. Photo - UNDP Zimbabwe

Human rights advocacy, monitoring and reporting are central pillars to an unassailable democratic culture. This project recognizes that CSOs are critical to the building and strengthening of the human rights architecture in Zimbabwe; deepening democracy and enhancing citizen participation in governance affairs. Through this project, CSOs will provide technical and capacity expertise necessary for the promotion protection and fulfilment of human rights in Zimbabwe.

Project Outputs

  1. Increased capacity of CSOs in Zimbabwe to carry out human rights reporting, monitoring and advocacy;
  2. Legal, policy and regulatory reform in the operational and regulatory environment of CSOs working in governance discourse;
  3. Current, accurate, qualitative and timely research, documentation and publications on human rights situation in Zimbabwe;
  4. Ratification and domestication of outstanding international and regional human rights and governance instruments (including CAT; UNCRPD);
  5. Increased transparency and accountability in the management of public resources;
  6. Strengthened partnerships between CSOs and relevant government/quasi government institutions as well as other international organisations;
  7. Increased participation of citizens in human rights and democracy building processes


  1. A draft report on the NGO regulatory framework in Zimbabwe has been produced. This report assesses the laws, policies and practices that regulate NGO operations. An advocacy strategy is now being developed as a lobby tool with which to approach policy makers.
  2. One high level consultative meeting was held by apex bodies with a mandate on persons living with disability and an advocacy strategy developed for moving the agenda on ratification on the UN Convention of Person Living with Disability.
  3. A report on the baseline study on the management of public resources has been produced to galvanise CSO engagement with policy makers. The report is an assessment of the effectiveness of initiatives and frameworks being used in Zimbabwe to promote good governance, public accountability and transparency in the natural resources sector with a particular focus on mining.
  4. Legal Resources Foundation (LRF) developed educational materials popularizing the new Constitution. This simplified version of the constitution makes it easier for communities and stakeholder groups to develop an appreciation of the provisions of the new constitution following its passing in both houses of parliament and enactment into law.

Key Challenges/Constraints

  1. The funding gap remains huge and militates against the achievement of some of the objectives.
  2. Mistrust between CSOs and the Government.

Planned Future Activities

  1. Finalization of the NGO Advocacy Strategy on the regulatory framework
  2. Produce annual human rights report
  3. Finalize M&E framework to monitor human rights implementation
  4. Facilitate engagement for the establishment of a human rights
  5. Conduct civic education on accessing legal aid services