2022-09 Hybrid Training for HR Defenders during 51st UN HR-Council

On the occasion of the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council


‘Course on the Human Rights Council, international human rights and humanitarian law, international procedures and diplomacy’

Hybrid Course, Geneva, from 19 September to 5 October 2022

Registration: info@gdh-ghr.org;
On-line participation: link will be sent to selected trainees.
In-person participation: in Conference Room Caecilia, 16 Rue Schaub, Geneva


Keep the date and apply to Geneva for Human Rights’ 52nd Geneva Course for defenders from the regions ! This hybrid course takes place from Monday 19 September to 5 October 2022, during the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council (‘HR-Council’, from 13 September to 7 October 2022).

With the Covid-19 restrictions, many
defenders from the regions still cannot come to Geneva to attend UN sessions. Many participants will therefore attend the Course on-line. The programme and working methods have been adapted to enable on-line trainees to fully benefit from the exposure to the debates in the HR-Council. At the same time, those who can travel to Geneva are offered the opportunity to attend in-person.



An international training organization, Geneva for Human Rights (GHR) aims at human rights implementation in the countries. It trains human rights NGOs, defenders, and those promoting human rights in the field, to empower them in the elaboration and realization of strategies, and in the use of domestic, regional and international human rights procedures.

Since the creation of the HR-Council (2006), GHR conducted its Geneva Course at ordinary sessions of the HR-Council. GHR also conducts Briefings and Workshops (especially on-demand for national NGOs coalitions) during sessions of the treaty bodies
and of the Universal Periodic Review (
UPR). With its partners in the field, GHR also convenes Experts Seminars in Geneva on the main themes on the HR-Council’s agenda.

GHR also conducts many (3-4 days) In-Country Courses, in Latin America, Africa, Russia, and Asia-Pacific.


The Geneva Course is an interactive and intensive training during ordinary sessions of the HR-Council. Trainees acquire basic knowledge in international relations; international human rights, humanitarian and criminal laws; human rights standard setting process; transitional justice; inter-governmental organisations (IGOs); the UN, its reform and the role of its main organs; the HR-Council and its mechanisms; and human rights treaty bodies.

With the wide training experience of its trainers in Geneva, GHR Geneva Courses are unique. They combine the theory, the exchanges on the experience of the participants (field situations) and the exposure to the multilateral reality, which participants monitor.

Composed of its researchers and fellows from different universities, GHR
Programme of Human Rights Policy Studies (HPS) assists the trainees during the HR-Council’s session.


The Geneva Courses are part of GHR Global Training Programme, which aims at a full and effective participation of defenders from the regions in the work of the HR-Council. Such participation is essential for the quality of the HR-Council’s work. Priority in the selection is given to defenders and NGOs from the regions. GHR also welcomes members of national and regional NGOs delegations attending the session of the HR-Council, and trainees from regional and international human rights organisations having their seat or representation at the UN Office in Geneva.


The Course is divided into a General Course (Week-1) on the international system and the HR-Council; a Course on the proceedings of the HR-Council (Week-2), to analyze the debates in the HR-Council, and on the conclusions and follow-up of the Course (Week-3).

The General Course (19-23 September 2022) presents an overview of international relations; international human rights, humanitarian and criminal laws; the UN mechanisms and procedures; the HR-Council; the OHCHR; and the use of the Special procedures, treaty bodies and UPR. Trainees will learn drafting communications to the special procedures.

The Course on the HR-Council’s proceedings (26-30 September 2022), introduces the main OHCHR and Special procedures reports submitted to the 51st session. Specific Courses will be given on transitional justice, women’s and indigenous peoples’ rights, enforced disappearance, SDG’s, the protection of human rights defenders.

Week-3 (3-5 October 2022) is devoted to the conclusions and follow-up of the Geneva Course, with GHR Course on human rights implementation in the countries (SDG’s, national plans, technical assistance, NGOs strategies inside the countries). This last segment of the Course will be animated on-line by former trainees in the Geneva Course, who are still involved in the human rights
movement, and who will share their experience.



The schedule of the daily classes is from 10:00 to 13:00, each morning, Geneva-time. It makes it possible for defenders from Europe, Africa (similar times) and from Asia (afternoon there) to participate in the Course.

For online-participants, deadline for applications is 13 September 2022. You can apply by sending a mail to info@gdh-ghr.org with copy to hps-smt@gdh-ghr.org.

For in-person participants, deadline for application is 26 August 2022, as trainees will have to arrange their travels (including obtaining their visas) and accommodation. Costs of living in Geneva are high. Upon request, the Secretariat of GHR can give a list of estimated expenses.

To facilitate exchanges with and between the participants, all applicants are requested to fill the application form of the course.

The schedule for each presentation includes a short introduction, space for questions and answers, and a discussion. GHR will enable trainees to intervene on-line and/or to send their questions in advance.

On-line trainees, who cannot attend ‘in person’ the session of the HR-Council, will monitor several live and/or recorded sessions of the HR-Council on ‘UN Web TV’.

Tuition Fees for the Course is 1’200.00 Swiss francs (CHF). The fees include the full documentation and background papers as well as a personalized follow-up and implementation strategy briefing. The fees may be reduced on demand for human rights
defenders from the regions having no sponsor.

To obtain the Course’s certificate, trainees have to comply with several tasks: submitting a paper on the patterns in their country; reading and summarizing reports submitted to the HR-Council, drafting reports on the deliberations of the HR-Council, drafting a communication to the UN thematic procedures; there are two written tests.