Journalists for Human Rights

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jhr (Journalists for Human Rights)
Jhr Logo.jpg
Formation 2002
Type non-profit organization
Headquarters Akron, Ohio

Journalists for Human Rights (JHR) is an international media development charity and non-governmental organization based in Toronto, Canada.

JHR's mission is to "empower journalists to cover human rights stories objectively and effectively". The organizations' vision is for everybody in the world to be aware of their rights.

Canada's largest media development organization, JHR believes that, "Creating rights awareness is the first and most necessary step to ending rights abuses. By mobilizing the media to spread human rights awareness, JHR informs people about human rights, empowering marginalized communities to stand up, speak out and protect themselves".[1]

JHR has worked in 21 countries and trained over 12,000 journalists whose human rights stories have reached over 50 million people.

JHR employs a "reciprocal change" approach, a process that involves local media partnerships and development outcomes determined through participatory consultation with Editors and Owners, Working Journalists, Students, and Civil Society within a region.[2]

JHR currently has programs in Ghana, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Northern Ontario. It also has representatives and non-profit status in the United States and the United Kingdom.

JHR is currently led by its Executive Director, Rachel Pulfer.[3]

JHR was founded by Benjamin Peterson and Alexandra Sicotte-Levesque in 2002.[4]


JHR is a registered Canadian Charity. It receives funding from international and Canadian agencies and governments, foundations, and individual donors.

JHR's current Government Partners include: United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF); Department for International Development (DFID, UK); Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA); AusAid (Australia).

Media coverage and Partnerships[edit]

JHR has received media attention in Canada, from The Globe and Mail,[5][6] The Toronto Star, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and[7] In 2012, JHR partnered with CBC and Global News to send journalists from those networks to JHR projects to act as short-term journalism trainers. In May 2013, CTV's senior editor and news anchor Lisa LaFlamme mentored a network of JHR affiliated journalists in Goma (Eastern DRC), the centre of ongoing conflict and humanitarian crisis since 1998.[8]

JHR partners with The Alva Foundation and Massey College on the Gordon N. Fisher-JHR Fellowship. The annual fellowship is part of the Southam Journalism Fellowships program at the University of Toronto's Massey College.

JHR partners with the Canadian Association of Journalism to present an annual award for human rights reporting. JHR also presents an annual award to a news organization or team for the best human rights coverage in Canada.


  1. ^ "Journalists for Human Rights," accessed February 3, 2009
  2. ^
  3. ^ "The Team | JHR". Retrieved 2015-11-30. 
  4. ^ Davis, Nicholas, "Africa got under his skin," Toronto Sun, November 1, 2004
  5. ^ Kelly, Deidre, "For society, Africa is the cause du jour,", October 13, 2007
  6. ^ " Stephens, Lisa, "Benjamin Peterson, 29 Ontario Co-founder, executive director, Journalists for Human Rights, Toronto",, May 7, 2007
  7. ^ Ien, Marci, "Marci Ien in Sierra Leone: Human Rights reporting,", October 22, 2008
  8. ^ LaFlamme, Lisa. Friday May 31: the resilient heart of the Congo pumping for change through, May 2013

External links[edit]