Humanity United

2014 Performance Report

President’s Message

Dear friends,

Every year as we prepare this report and I reflect back on our work, I am reminded of what a great privilege it is to work with Humanity United’s partners, leaders, and staff — people so dedicated to a more peaceful and free world. Though we focus on some of the most intractable problems facing humanity, I am proud of the shared spirit we collectively bring to this work.

2014 was a year of much hope on many fronts and a year of despair on others. It was a powerful reminder that our vision of a world free of conflict takes resilience, creativity, hard work, and an unwavering dedication to sustainable social change. It also sometimes takes renewal. That is why we dedicated so much time this year trying to more fully understand how we can better influence the environments and systems in which we work.

In 2014, we funded efforts to strengthen government systems, support civil society, and protect the most vulnerable from continued exploitation, and we worked for greater collaboration among leading NGOs, the business community, and other key stakeholders in human rights. We saw significant advances in response to our advocacy work through the Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST), including increased federal funding for key interventions. The Partnership for Freedom — a collaboration between the White House, federal agencies, and other donors — selected winners for the first Challenge and secured significant new private funding for later rounds of the competition. The Freedom Fund, a $100M donor collaboration launched in partnership with the Legatum Foundation and the Walk Free Foundation, also began operations in 2014 and launched hotspot activities in Northern India, Nepal, and Thailand.

Unfortunately, in 2014, it was impossible to escape the reality of civil war in South Sudan — where Humanity United has worked since 2008 — that has upended a nation that once held much promise and seen the death and displacement of far too many of its people. Similarly, Humanity United has worked for the past seven years in Liberia, where the world watched the agonizing devastation of the Ebola epidemic ravage the people of this fragile state with unexpected speed.

In these cases, we supported and witnessed the heroic work of partners like Nonviolent Peaceforce, Last Mile Health, and Doctors Without Borders, who were on the front lines of these tragedies. We also resolved to do more to help these people who have for too long been deprived of the peace, security, and freedom that they deserve.

As we have done every year, we strove to develop a transparent performance report in order to provide real insight into Humanity United’s mission and operations. With all of our work, we are constantly learning and iterating on our strategies in order to gain the knowledge needed to better achieve the change we seek.

As always, we invite your feedback. If you have thoughts or ideas, please contact us via email at info@humanityunited.org. You can also follow our work on our website at www.HumanityUnited.org and on Twitter @HumanityUnited

On behalf of the board of trustees and our dedicated staff at Humanity United, I am pleased to present our 2014 Performance Report.

Thank you for your interest and support, Randy Newcomb
President & CEO

2014 was a year of much hope on many fronts and a year of despair in others.

Engaging Systems

Every year, billions are spent in human and material resources to address critical issues such as poverty, democracy, human rights, the environment, and security. Many good things happen as a result, but too often these resources fall short of their intended goal and are ineffective in achieving the change for which they are intended.

At Humanity United, we want to make sure our resources are directed toward effective strategies that contribute to long-term, sustainable solutions in the areas in which we work. In short, we want the change we seek to be lasting. To do this, we need to be as flexible, adaptive, and creative as the dynamics that impact our work.

To this end, we spent a lot of time in 2014 reviewing our strategies and efforts around the world. We began a deliberate process to help us more fully understand and account for the complex systems and environments that impact our portfolio of work. This team effort included critical analysis, detailed mapping of systems to determine where our resources would be the most impactful, rechecking our assumptions, and trying to anticipate and account for emerging trends. We took on the challenge to become a systems-oriented organization, requiring some fundamental changes to the ways we develop our strategies, teams, and partnerships.

Humanity United’s work has always been based on some understanding of the systems and environments that affect our work, but never before have we pushed so deeply into this level of analysis. In some cases, this process surfaced a need for only minor adjustments to an existing strategy. In other cases, more work was required to uncover the specific points of entry. In all cases, this systems initiative provided us a clearer picture and a better understanding of our work.

While we spent much of this year learning about systems analysis, the work to apply this analysis to our strategies will continue in the years to come, making Humanity United more effective at addressing the problems facing humanity and achieving the change needed for a more peaceful world.

At Humanity United, we want the change we seek to be lasting.
Photo by Forest Woodward/Food Chains Film
Nepal
Laborers stack bricks outside a brick factory in Nepal. (Photos by Pete Pattisson)

Nepal: A Better Brick Market

In Nepal, more than 250,000 men, women, and children labor in harsh conditions, making and transporting bricks by hand in kilns. The majority of these workers are recruited through a system of predatory loans and seasonal advances that require entire families, including children, to work at these kilns in a futile attempt to collectively repay their debt.

In 2014, we worked with the Global Fairness Initiative, Brick Clean Group Nepal, and GoodWeave to develop and launch Better Brick Nepal (BBN), an innovative market-based approach that incentivizes kiln owners to eliminate exploitative labor practices from their businesses. In exchange for coming into compliance with a GoodWeave-developed standard banning forced, bonded, and child labor in kilns, BBN offers kiln owners the training and equipment necessary to meet those standards and produce better quality, cleaner-burning bricks, thereby increasing their competitive advantage, market share, and profits.

BBN is now being piloted in five brick kilns that have the potential of collectively producing 30 million bricks. As work conditions are beginning to improve in these pilot kilns, BBN also signed a memorandum of understanding with the Federations of Contractors’ Association of Nepal to implement a purchase plan to buy BBN bricks.

Great progress was made towards shaping a marketplace that rewards ethical, high-quality bricks. But these early advances are only the beginning.

Liberia
(Photo by Kate Cummings)

Liberia: Promise And Challenges

Since 2007, Humanity United has provided support for Liberian civil society organizations, INGOs working in-country, and the Liberian government. In 2014, the unprecedented outbreak of Ebola resulted in thousands of infections and deaths and took a significant economic toll on the country.

In response to the crisis, we supported organizations including Direct Relief International, Doctors Without Borders, and Last Mile Health, who delivered desperately-needed supplies and worked on the front lines to treat those who are ill. We also provided support to the Monrovia-based Conflict Early Warning Working Group, which used its extensive local network to disseminate public health messages.

Despite the outbreak, Humanity United continued to support economic development in Liberia, primarily through our work in natural resource management and entrepreneurship. Our continued support for the Concessions Working Group allowed for new partnerships to promote transparency in extractives, increased monitoring by Liberian civil society, two research reports on natural resource governance, and a high-level convening bringing together concessionaires, the UN, and Liberian as well as regional governments. We also moved forward in our work with the SPARK Business Start-up Center in Monrovia and Virgin Unite to launch the Branson Scholarship Program, which in its first year completed a number of capacity and leadership development activities with an initial cohort of 15 Liberian entrepreneurs.

Thailand
Burmese migrant workers leave the port after unloading their catch. (Photo by Chris Kelly / The Guardian)

Thailand: Disrupting Exploitation

Hundreds of thousands of migrant workers are at risk of horrific forced labor in Thailand’s $7 billion seafood industry. To support the flow of cheap seafood available at supermarkets around the world, many of these migrants are deceived and sold into debt bondage on fishing vessels and in factories where they might face 20-hour shifts, regular beatings, torture, and even execution-style killings.

Since 2010, Humanity United has worked to disrupt this system of exploitation and abuse by engaging partners from nonprofits, media, government, and business to be part of the solution. This work came to a head in June 2014 when a major investigation by The Guardian’s Modern Day Slavery in Focus series revealed that the Thai fishing industry is “built on slavery” and linked Western retailers like Walmart, Tesco, Costco, Morrisons, and Carrefour to seafood produced by forced labor.

This investigation coincided with the downgrade of Thailand to the lowest tier in the U.S. Department of State’s 2014 Trafficking in Persons Report, which has resulted in diplomatic pressure and subsequent pledges by the Thai government to protect these workers. Since the downgrade and investigation, Western supermarkets are also beginning to take action to address the issue of forced labor in their supply chains.

Media attention on this issue continues today. While exploitation in the sector persists, the appalling system supporting Thailand’s seafood industry is being disrupted, the world is watching, and an opportunity for systemic change has emerged.

(Photo by Aaron Clamage)

The Partnership For Freedom

Announced by President Obama September 2012, the Partnership for Freedom is a series of innovation challenges designed to inspire new solutions to modern day slavery in the United States.

In 2013, we launched the Partnership for Freedom’s first innovation challenge— Reimagine: Opportunity—with the goal of improving the infrastructure of support for survivors of modern day slavery. We received more than 160 proposals from which judges selected 12 finalists.

In January, finalist teams gathered in Washington, D.C. to attend an intensive three-day innovation workshop designed to further develop each team’s idea. Teams consulted with coaches from a wide range of fields and received feedback from trafficking survivors and fellow participants. In the end, finalists emerged with more robust and competitive proposals. While collaboration was an expected benefit of the workshop, some finalists leveraged this opportunity by merging their proposals after recognizing their shared goals and complementary strengths.

In April, we announced two winners of the Reimagine: Opportunity challenge: The MGH Freedom Clinic, which seeks to establish a pioneering model of comprehensive primary and preventative health care services for trafficking survivors; and Safe Shelter Collaborative, a mobile application that locates and provides immediate shelter services for survivors. Winners received $1.77 million in funding to begin piloting these solutions.

The Partnership for Freedom’s second innovation challenge will be launched in Fall 2015.

Sudan
A woman carries her belongings into a UNMISS Internally Displaced Persons camp in Bor, South Sudan. (Photos by Alissa Everett)

South Sudan: Challenges For Peace

In a year marked by the return of civil war to South Sudan, Humanity United shifted strategy to focus on supporting peacemaking efforts in the region and mobilizing action in policy circles in Washington, D.C. HU staff engaged both directly and behind the scenes in the peace process led by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and supported a number of South Sudanese peacemaking initiatives. Throughout the year, we also convened humanitarian and human rights advocacy organizations to build a unified voice calling for sustainable peace in the new country.

As the situation worsened in 2014, Humanity United engaged Congress and participated in several briefings that highlighted necessary steps to build peace and ease the suffering of the South Sudanese people. We worked with the media on behalf of the advocacy and aid community, sharing and publishing letters to the U.S. government, press releases, and opinion pieces. When a crucial arms embargo stalled in the U.S. government, Humanity United took the story to the press, pushing the U.S. to endorse it. In the following days, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced his support.

Our team also supported South Sudanese civil society efforts to help end the fighting and provided support to groups working on protection of human rights and dignity. We tried to ensure the people living in South Sudan were not forgotten amidst the violence. Working with partners, we supported a photographer who documented the internally displaced and hosted an event during the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington for South Sudanese journalists to tell stories. We remain deeply committed to the people of South Sudan and will continue to stand by them as they navigate an uncertain future.

David Abramowitz, Humanity United Vice President of Policy & Government Relations, speaks at the Congressional Briefing: Combating Exploitative Child Labor on April 8, 2014. (Left photo by Sharon Farmer; right photo by Katie Orlinsky)

Spotlight: Policy Team

Humanity United’s policy team in Washington, D.C. regularly engages governments, civil society, and others to press for solutions to conflicts around the world, support people caught in and emerging from conflict, as well as those vulnerable to atrocities, abuse, and modern slavery.

In 2014, we worked hard to ensure attention and coordinated advocacy around the U.S. government’s responses to the Ebola outbreak in Liberia and the civil war in South Sudan. We worked with key partners to press for solutions to conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan. Our policy team also successfully advocated for greater U.S. funding for two key areas: to address emerging complex crises around the world and to enforce sanctions against human rights violators.

Twenty years after the Rwandan Genocide, Humanity United and the Prevention and Protection Working Group, a coalition dedicated to atrocity prevention, worked with members of the U.S. Senate to develop S. Res 413, a resolution urging the U.S. government to strengthen its “ability to identify and more rapidly respond to genocide and mass atrocities in order to prevent where possible and mitigate the impact of such events.”

Humanity United established the Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST) in 2007 to ensure strong U.S. leadership in the global effort to combat modern slavery. With our support, ATEST expanded in 2014 and now includes 14 organizations that successfully advocated for significant new federal funding for U.S. victims of trafficking, as well as increased international anti-trafficking funding. Throughout the year, ATEST also worked closely with trafficking survivors to call for stronger U.S. policies to prevent and end human trafficking, to stop treating trafficking victims as criminals, and to provide critical survivor services. ATEST and Humanity United also supported a California law that protects foreign workers from abuse and human trafficking.

New challenges also emerged in 2014, especially as parts of an important piece of legislation—the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act—were threatened. As the unaccompanied child migrant crisis unfolded, Humanity United and ATEST worked to ensure that the important protections contained in this law were not changed, helping to prevent vulnerable children from being exploited by traffickers.

Timeline

Investments

Advancing Human Freedom Building Peace

Amnesty International Limited

$173,500
Project Support

Anti-Slavery International

$264,957
Project Support

ATEST

$410,272
Direct Impact Activity

ATEST

$141,400
Direct Impact Activity (Lobbying)

Better Brick Nepal Annual Review Meeting

$18,782
Direct Impact Activity

Ceres, Inc.

$70,000
Project Support

Coalition of Immokalee Workers

$250,000
Project Support

Coalition of Immokalee Workers

$50,000
Project Support

Coalition of Immokalee Workers

$46,650
Project Support

Coalition of Immokalee Workers

$3,350
Lobbying Grants

Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking

$48,000
Project Support

Coalition to Abolish Slavery & Trafficking

$12,000
Lobbying Grants

Corporate Engagement Specialist

$62,172
Direct Impact Activity

Education Fund of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity

$40,000
Project Support

Education Fund of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity

$10,000
Lobbying Grants

End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT)

$40,000
Project Support

End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT)

$10,000
Lobbying Grants

Free the Slaves

$43,000
Project Support

Free the Slaves

$6,954
Lobbying Grants

FSI Worldwide

$75,000
Project Support

Full Circle Exchange

$150,000
Project Support

Futures without Violence

$20,000
Project Support

Futures Without Violence

$5,000
Lobbying Grants

Global Fairness Initiative

$203,699
Project Support

GoodWeave International

$125,000
Project Support

Hoʻōla Nā Pua

$50,000
Project Support

Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility

$195,000
Project Support

International Justice Mission

$40,000
Project Support

International Justice Mission

$10,000
Lobbying Grants

International Labor Rights Forum

$115,000
Project Support

International Labor Rights Forum

$60,000
Project Support

KnowTheChain

$1,020
Direct Impact Activity

Massachusetts General Hospital

$600,000
Project Support

National Domestic Workers Alliance, Inc.

$20,000
Project Support

National Domestic Workers Alliance, Inc.

$5,000
Lobbying Grants

National Network for Youth, Inc.

$20,000
Project Support

National Network for Youth, Inc.

$5,000
Lobbying Grants

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Inc.

$175,000
Project Support

Palm Oil Principles Workshop

$25,000
Direct Impact Activity

Partnership for Freedom

$123,941
Direct Impact Activity

Polaris Project

$43,015
Project Support

Polaris Project

$6,985
Lobbying Grants

Public Concern Foundation, Inc.

$76,980
Project Support

Rainforest Action Network

$90,000
Project Support

Rainforest Action Network

$60,000
Project Support

Research – Migrant Workers and Technology

$72,538
Direct Impact Activity

Safe Horizon

$48,000
Project Support

Safe Horizon

$12,000
Lobbying Grants

Stop Girl Trafficking Program Evaluation

$18,828
Direct Impact Activity

TechSoup Global

$1,170,000
Project Support

The Freedom Fund

$1,200,000
General Support

The Freedom Fund

$510,241
Direct Impact Activity

The Guardian

$264,000
Direct Impact Activity

The Philanthropy Workshop West

$70,000
Project Support

Verité, Inc.

$497,850
Project Support

Verité, Inc.

$90,000
Project Support

Verité, Inc.

$60,000
Project Support

Verité, Inc.

$60,000
Project Support

Vital Voices Global Partnership, Inc.

$40,000
Project Support

Vital Voices Global Partnership, Inc.

$10,000
Lobbying Grants

World Education, Inc.

$900,000
Project Support

World Education, Inc

$197,800
Project Support

World Vision

$46,700
Project Support

World Vision

$3,300
Lobbying Grants

Advocacy Project

$20,000
Project Support

Aegis Trust

$75,000
Project Support

American Academy of Arts and Sciences

$100,000
Project Support

Amnesty International Limited

$145,000
Project Support

Budapest Centre for the International Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities

$300,000
Project Support

Building Markets Ltd

$150,000
Project Support

Carnegie Mellon University

$100,000
Project Support

Carnegie Mellon University

$10,000
Project Support

Center for American Progress

$750,000
Project Support

Center for Civilians in Conflict

$100,000
Project Support

Center for Global Nonkilling

$50,000
General Support

Civitas Maxima

$99,960
Project Support

Convening – Long-term Atrocity Prevention

$22,348
Direct Impact Activity

Convening – Peace & Stability Indicators for Post-2015 MDGs

$2,977
Direct Impact Activity

Convening – West Africa Civil Society R2P

$19,930
Direct Impact Activity

Crisis Action, Inc.

$750,000
General Support

Direct Relief

$25,000
Project Support

Doctors Without Borders USA, Inc.

$25,000
Project Support

Early warning support for Libera’s Peacebuilding Office

$4,583
Direct Impact Activity

FCNL Education Fund

$60,000
Project Support

Free Press Unlimited

$302,616
Project Support

Friends Committee on National Legislation

$60,000
Lobbying Grants

Graduate Center, CUNY

$200,000
Project Support

Henry Dunant Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue

$75,676
Project Support

Human Rights Watch

$675,000
Project Support

Human Rights Watch

$540,000
Project Support

Independent Feature Project

$30,133
Project Support

International Refugee Rights Initiative

$240,000
Project Support

Invisible Children, Inc.

$100,000
General Support

Last Mile Health

$50,000
Project Support

Last Mile Health

$25,000
General Support

Living Ubuntu

$8,060
Project Support

Mana Nutritive Aid Products, Inc.

$50,000
Project Support

Mennonite Central Committee U.S.

$260,000
General Support

New Filmmakers Los Angeles

$20,000
Project Support

New York University

$640,000
Project Support

Nonviolent Peaceforce

$300,000
Project Support

Parliamentarians for Global Action

$600,000
Project Support

Peacebuilding and Human Rights Media Coverage Training

$45,966
Direct Impact Activity

President and Fellows of Harvard College

$150,000
Project Support

President and Fellows of Harvard College

$100,000
Project Support

Real Medicine, Inc.

$50,000
Project Support

Regents of the University of California at Berkeley

$150,000
Project Support

Regents of the University of California at Berkeley

$40,000
Project Support

Research and Mapping - South Sudanese Diaspora

$4,500
Direct Impact Activity

Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights

$55,576
Project Support

Saferworld

$174,970
Project Support

Servant Forge, Inc.

$5,000
Project Support

South Sudan Law Society Survey Psychologist

$30,000
Direct Impact Activity

Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society

$15,000
Project Support

Sudan Democracy First Group

$259,999
Project Support

Sudan Tribune

$215,456
Project Support

The Elders Foundation

$900,000
General Support

The Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention

$12,651
Direct Impact Activity

TrustAfrica

$600,000
Project Support

TrustAfrica

$399,300
Project Support

TrustAfrica

$200,000
Project Support

TrustAfrica

$54,029
Project Support

Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York

$20,000
Project Support

U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

$150,000
Project Support

UN Office of the Special Advisers on the Prevention of Genocide and Responsibility to Protect

$100,000
Project Support

Virgin Unite Africa

$77,545
Project Support

World Federalist Movement

$150,000
Project Support

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