At the Training Institute set up by the Robert Kennedy Foundation in Florence, activists for human rights from all over the world come and learn how to smartly use the internet as a tool to get their job done. It takes courage to work for spreading the ideas that are needed to help people in some countries in growing a society that respects human rights. But it also takes an intelligent ability in using the network: how to campanign, how to communicate in a secure way, how to be conscious about the tactics that authoritarian governments can use against those that fight for human rights: that’s what activists learn at the Empowerment Lab in Florence with the help of organizations such as Electronic Frontier Foundation, Global Partners & Associates, Global Voices Online, Human Rights Watch, OneWorld Digital Security Exchange, Open Society Foundations, Tactical Technology Collective, and Witness. Furthermore, the financial support by the Ford Foundation has been essential for the organization of the First Group that has been in Florence until yesterday. Here is the blog.
But as activists learn what can help them in their non-violent fight, we the people living in the “democratic West” are going to learn as much from them. Democracy is not a given, it is a process: and we need to maintain it, we need to care about it. Activists from all over the world help their people. But they also help us.