What is the Activist Lab ?
The Activist Lab is a project uniting youth activists and civil society organizations in their path to a fairer, greener and safer world. The project’s aim is to connect youth activists from all over the world and strengthen their activities, amplifying their influence and impact. The project team and youth hubs (we) experiment with how to equitably partner with and enhance the power of youth activists to push path-breaking progress in key areas, such as political accountability, climate justice, gender equality, economic transformation and countering disinformation.
The network is made up of 9 organisations, including Actua.PE, the African Human Rights Network, Justice & Peace Netherlands, MAAN, Oxfam Novib, Oxfam Novib Activist Lab, Oxfam Peru, Pax, and World of Tolerance.
Our vision is to establish a co-created youth-led solidarity space that is welcoming, inclusive, feminist – deeply rooted in connecting and opening civic space supported by a platform of knowledge and experience to create a more equal world.
Our growing alliance consists of hubs in Africa, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, owned by passionate young activists. These hubs are coordinated by a diverse range of organizations: Oxfam Peru and Actua.pe in Peru, African Human Rights Network in Tanzania, World of Tolerance in Georgia, and Oxfam Novib, Pax for Peace and Justice & Peace in the Netherlands. Together, we have built a vibrant network in which youth activists can engage across these hubs, take collective action and learn from one another.
Therefore, we are dedicated to building and sharing tools, knowledge, resources, expertise, networks, and more. Our aim is to strengthen the work and networks of each youth activist within our alliance so that they can effectively create meaningful change and contribute to a better world for everyone.
The initiative commenced in November 2021 as a pilot project, aiming to empower young activists and provide them with support throughout their endeavors in driving social change within their respective nations.
Over the course of four months (from December 2021 to March 2022), AHRN orchestrated two distinct activities. Additionally, a three-week workshop targeting young Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) facing heightened risks across the African continent was conducted. Within this workshop, participants engaged in discussions concerning the obstacles they confront in their daily roles as young activists operating in Africa. They were encouraged to contribute insights regarding their requirements for capacity building and security enhancement.
Throughout the workshop, these activists underwent training in digital security, encompassing the safeguarding of both online and offline data. This included instruction on prudent internet usage, the execution of effective online campaigns and petitions, responsible engagement with social media platforms, and website security practices. Moreover, comprehensive training in physical security techniques was also delivered.