MINELRES: Invitation to apply for Minority Rights FCNM Training 2005

MINELRES moderator minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Fri Jan 7 09:17:41 2005

Original sender: Neil Clarke <NEIL.CLARKE@mrgmail.org>

Dear All

Minority Rights Group International (MRG) would like to announce an
extension to the deadline for applications for our Framework Convention
on National Minorities (FCNM) Training which will take place in
Strasbourg, France from 23-28 February 2005. Due to the short deadline
and Christmas/New Year breaks we have so far received fewer applications
than normal for this training and have extended the deadline to
Wednesday 13th of January.

Please see below our original letter and attached the application form.

Kind regards

Neil Clarke
Programme Assistant 
Minority Rights Group International 
54 Commercial Street
E1 6LT
Tel: + 44 020 7422 4211 
Fax: + 44 020 7422 4219
Email: neil.clarke@mrgmail.org



NGO Training on the Council of Europe's 
Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities

Strasbourg, France, 23-30 February 2005

Programme Description

As part of ongoing work on the Framework Convention for the Protection
of National Minorities, Minority Rights Group International is
organising a Training on the Framework Convention for the Protection of
National Minorities.   The training is organised in cooperation with the
FCNM Secretariat of the Directorate General of Human Rights of the
Council of Europe, and will be held in Strasbourg from 23rd to 30th
February 2005. The training is for minority based and interethnic human
rights NGOs from countries whose state reports are due in 2005 only. 
The training is open to NGOs from Albania, Armenia, Austria, Cyprus,
Finland, Germany, Ireland, Malta, Norway, Poland,  Romania, Russian
Federation, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovak Republic, Sweden Switzerland,
Ukraine and United Kingdom.  The training is also open to NGOs from

The deadline for applications is Wednesday, 5th January 2005. An
application form is attached.

Costs of travel, accommodation, and subsistence will be covered by MRG
for all selected applicants.

The objectives of the training will be to:
- provide information on the content of the Framework Convention and its
monitoring mechanism;  
- identify ways in which NGOs can best contribute to the monitoring of
the implementation of the Convention, both at the domestic level and at
the level of the Council of Europe;  
- provide opportunities for participating NGOs to make contact with
other NGOs working on minority protection, Council of Europe staff,
members of the treaty monitoring body, and their government
representatives to the Council of Europe; and
- develop follow-up activities, focusing on involvement in state
reporting process, producing shadow reports, and related advocacy.
The programme will include presentations, case studies, discussions,
small group and individual work.  It will include an overview of
international instruments and mechanisms for minority protection,
including in-depth consideration of the Framework Convention, its
monitoring mechanism and opportunities for civil society to contribute. 
Methodologies will be participatory and the focus will be on practice. 
There will be task groups on the development of NGO advocacy strategies
to contribute to effective monitoring of State compliance and drafting
additional information/shadow reports.

MRG will invite representatives of 25 NGOs from the target countries
listed above.  

Participants will be selected on the basis of their organisations'
institutional capacity and commitment to raise awareness of minority
rights and monitor implementation of international instruments,
specifically the Framework Convention, and their own professional

Priority will be given to NGOs who:
- prioritise advocacy for protection of minority rights (international
experience is not needed, but experience and organisational commitment
to working on minority protection at the domestic level is key)
- are interested in producing shadow reports on the Framework Convention
and being involved in the state reporting process. 

NGO representatives applying to the training have to be staff members of
their organisations, and should have:

- experience in advocacy work;
- commitment to human and minority rights;
- in-principle support from the management of their organisation to take
forward work on monitoring the Framework Convention;
- very good English language skills.   Unfortunately, the budget does
not allow for interpretation costs and therefore participants should
have very good English language skills to be able to participate
actively in discussions.

MRG will aim for a mixture of people from different countries, at least
70% of whom will be from minority communities, and a gender balance. MRG
will select participants on the basis of their application and the above
organisational and professional selection criteria. 

MRG will not select more than one participant from any one
organisation.  The training is not open to organisations from which 2 or
more persons have participated in MRG's Strasbourg FCNM training since
2000.  Anyone not sure how many persons from their organisation have
participated in MRG's previous FCNM trainings can contact MRG to double

For more information, please contact Neil Clarke on
neil.clarke@mrgmail.org, tel +44.20.7422.4211, fax +44.20.7422.4219, or
Chris Chapman on chris.chapman@mrgmail.org, tel +44.20.7422.4222.