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Erol Onderoglu
June 21st, 2016

Turkey: Free Erol Önderoglu!

type:Petition, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Erol Önderoglu was placed in pre-trial detention by an Istanbul court on June 20, 2016, along with the journalist Ahmet Nesin and the human rights defender Sebnem Korur Fincanci. The three intellectuals are charged with “terrorist propaganda” for taking part in a campaign of solidarity with the Kurdish daily Özgür Gündem.

Erol Önderoglu is being prosecuted on the basis of three articles published by Özgür Gündem In May 2016 about power struggles within the various Turkish security forces and about the ongoing operations against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) rebels in southeastern Anatolia.

Erol Önderoglu has fought tirelessly to defend persecuted journalists for the past 20 years. He is the representative in Turkey for Reporters without Borders since 1996, a leader in this field and highly valued for his honesty and integrity.

Handcuffed and jailed after a closed hearing, Erol Önderoglu is today the victim of the persecutions he always denounced. It’s now our turn to fight for him.

Help Reporters without Borders, sign their petition and call on the Turkish authorities to immediately and unconditionally release Erol Önderoglu, Ahmet Nesin and Sebnem Korur Fincanci. All charges brought against them and 34 other participants in the solidarity campaign with Özgür Gündem should immediately be dropped!
June 20th, 2016
type:Donation, NGO, Project
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Agriculture is crucial to Ethiopia’s food security and the livelihoods of nearly 85% of its people.

Accelerating agricultural growth is a critical national priority: The country’s government has set ambitious targets for the agricultural sector to increase productivity, accelerate commercialization, and improve the livelihoods of Ethiopia’s smallholder farmers. Achieving the GTP targets requires coordinated action and innovation among key stakeholders.

Synergos works with the Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) and others to strengthen their partnerships, collaboratively identify systemic bottlenecks, and jointly develop solutions that promote food security and improve the lives and livelihoods of small-scale farmers. Based on geographic concentrations of producers, agribusinesses, and institutions engaged in the same agricultural sub-sector, the initiative catalyzes growth by harnessing efforts among an interconnected web of actors, from the federal to regional to local levels. Such collaboration allows small-scale farmers and agribusinesses to better realize higher productivity, and more market-oriented and higher value-added production.

Synergos is a non-profit organization which aims to reduce global poverty through “inclusive partnerships” that bring together government, business, civil society and local communities.

Support Synergos and their important work for small-scale farmers in Ethiopia by donating and/or spreading their news through your channels!
June 12th, 2016
type:Donation, NGO, Petition
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

In 2016 around 60 million people will be affected by El Niño in East and Southern Africa, the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, according to the UN’s humanitarian agency. The effects of El Niño have combined with existing droughts to make this year the hardest for some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

El Niño is the warming of sea surface temperatures of the Pacific Ocean. This phenomenon can change weather systems and consequently growing seasons around the globe. In already the hottest-ever recorded year, the “Super” El Niño of 2015/16 became one of the strongest ever. Super-charged by climate change, it’s bringing droughts, flooding and ruining harvests around the world.

In the worst affected countries, people go to bed with empty stomachs work their land or go to school with the gnawing pain of hunger; they walk or cycle for miles to try to find food. Pastoralists and small scale farmers are facing the same problems everywhere; their crops are failing and their animals are dying. Food insecurity is forcing people to cut down on the quantity and variety of the food that they eat, leading to malnutrition.

Oxfam is helping families to become more resilient to the devastating effects of climate change and El Niño, but more needs to be done. Support Oxfam and call on world leaders to release the cash urgently needed to save lives now and in the future!
June 06th, 2016
type:Donation, NGO, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Glyphosate is an active substance used in several different herbicides. It is the main substance in a herbicide known as “Round Up“ produced by the controversial multinational agrochemical corporation Monsanto. Where “Round Up” is used, nothing grows anymore. This is why Monsanto also sells genetically modified glyphosate-resistent plants to US-farmers.

In Europe glyphosate is used to prepare the fields before sowing seeds. In the near future the European Union must decide whether to extend its approval for the substance. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the World Health Organisation (WHO) has classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans”. Evidence in samples of urine and breast milk of city dwellers shows glyphosate has already found its way into the food chain.

This result is extremely alarming!

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has reached a different conclusion about the negative health effects of glyphosate. But as long as there is scientific uncertainty regarding the health effects of glyphosate, the European Commission has a legal responsibility to protect consumers from potential exposure to harm. Human health cannot be put at risk. Therefore, the Commission has no basis for re-approving glyphosate.

foodwatch is an independent, non-profit organisation that exposes food-industry practices that are not in the interests of consumers - such as the glyphosate case. foodwatch fights for the right of consumers to know exactly what they are buying and to enjoy good food that is healthy and uncontaminated. The NGO was founded in 2002 in Germany by former Greenpeace director Thilo Bode and has offices in Berlin, Amsterdam and Paris.

The food industry, lobbyists and politicians control what will end up on our plates and what we are allowed to know about our food. This has to stop! Support foodwatch as a donor and help them to stop shady lobbying practices of the food industry and fight for consumer rights!
Greenpeace protest at British Museum BP exhibition
May 24th, 2016
type:Petition, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

British Museum has a blockbuster exhibition this summer. Sunken Cities sponsored by BP – a company that profits from climate change and is responsible for environmental disasters such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

For the museum, it’s the launch of their biggest event of the year. But in the eyes of BP, whose logo appears all over the show, it’s an exquisite opportunity to clean up its image and distract from the polluting realities of its business. BP’s cash contributes less than 1% of the British Museum’s annual income, but the benefits it can glean from cosying up to the UK’s most popular cultural attraction can be priceless.

Sponsorship of art and cultural institutions is being used by oil companies like BP for the sole purpose of furthering their business interests. A series of recent Freedom of Information requests reported by the grassroots coalition Art, Not Oil show how BP strategically uses these institutions to lobby government officials and get direct access to decision makers.

The future of the sponsorship deal between the British Museum and BP is being decided now. Sign the petition to the British Museum asking them to drop BP as a sponsor and contribute to the independance of art!
May 16th, 2016
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Language loss is not new—languages have fallen out of use since ancient times. However, languages are disappearing today at an alarming rate. Of the nearly 7,000 languages in the world today, some 3,000 (43%) are endangered; many others will make their way into this catalogue in the near future.
Experts have predicted that in the worst-case scenario 90% of all languages will cease to be spoken within 100 years.

We should all be concerned over the crisis of language loss, for compelling reason:

Languages are treasure houses of information on literature, history, philosophy, and art. Their stories, ideas, and words help us make sense of our lives and the world around us. Specific knowledge is often held by the smaller speech communities of the world—knowledge of medicinal plants and cures, identification of plants and animals yet unknown scientifically. The loss of such knowledge could have devastating consequences for humanity.

The right for language is a human right. Language loss is often not voluntary; it frequently involves violations of human rights, with oppression or repression of speakers of minority languages. It is a matter of injustice when people are forced to give up their languages by repressive regimes or prejudiced dominant societies.

For these alarming reasons The Endangered Languages Project puts technology at the service of the organizations and individuals working to confront the language endangerment by documenting, preserving and teaching them. Through this website, users can not only access the most up to date and comprehensive information on endangered languages as well as samples being provided by partners, but also play an active role in putting their languages online by submitting information or samples in the form of text, audio or video files.

Share, like, follow, contribute and spread contents and links of The Endangered Languages Project and help raising awareness for this necessary and more than important project!

May 10th, 2016
type:Donation, Petition, Protest
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

For decades fossil fuel companies have knowingly contributed to runaway climate change, ravaged local communities, and obstructed the development of renewables - all to pad their pockets with billions in profits.

In just a few days, thousands of shareholders will vote on whether to make these oil giants disclose their lobbying, do better reporting, and prove their business model in a low-carbon world.

Online activism group SumOfUs teamed up with a powerful coalition with Asset Owners Disclosure Project and ShareAction to use shareholder and investor pressure to make Chevron and Exxon diversify away from oil and gas.

This petition is crucial for inhabitants of the US, the UK, Canada or Australia who probably contributed to a mutual fund, superannuation fund, or pension fund -- like Vanguard, Canada Pension Plan or AustralianSuper.

The action group established an online voting so that one can tell his or her pension or superannuation fund to support four different resolutions which are all aimed at diversifying oil companies away from fossil fuels.

Vote your pension and make these shareholder resolutions passed at Exxon and Chevron’s AGMs and help pushing big oil into the low-carbon future!
May 05th, 2016
type:Crowd Funding, Donation, NGO, Petition
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

The iconic Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania have been fighting for decades to survive and defend their environment. Lately, they're losing the battle: besieged by shady poachers, billionaires who want to buy up their traditional lands for safari lodges, and sketchy government officials.

For decades the Maasai have struggled to hang on to their ancestral lands as profit-hungry tourism companies and government officials evict, sell off, and repurpose the countryside that has sustained them for generations. Tourism brings billions into the Kenyan economy but the Maasai - the land’s rightful owners - barely see a drop!

Now a Maasai community in Kenya has had an idea to fight back and reclaim their own land by forming a new kind of reserve, run by themselves. This will not only ensure their habitat and the customs of their ancestors but also a new wildlife passage will be created.
For this project, lead by community members and local NGOs, the tribe needs funds fast to get the reserve up and running, take down fences, train young people, and pay them to be wildlife patrollers.

Support the Maasai with a donation and help them reclaiming their lands!
April 23rd, 2016
type:Donation, NGO, Project
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

The death of refugees and migrants at sea could already be a matter of the past if the border- and visa-regimes were dissolved. It’s a fact that without a radical change the recent tragedies in the Mediterranean Sea will be followed by many more deaths to come in our future. This is why the Watch The Med Alarm Phone was started in October 2014 by activist networks and civil society actors in Europe and Northern Africa. The project set up a self-organized hotline for refugees in distress in the Mediterranean Sea.

It offers the affected boat-people a second option to make their SOS noticeable. The alarm phone documents and mobilises in real-time. In this way, pressure to rescue is built-up, wherever possible and push- backs and other forms of human rights violations of refugees and migrants at sea can be opposed. Thus, the Alarm Phone is not a rescue number, but an alarm number to support rescue operations.

In this respect, the responsible coast guards are informed of the launch of the project. The critique of the deadly border regime is directed first and foremost to the politically responsible actors of the EU. If coast guards do not act promptly, it will be sought, on the one hand, to enforce rescue operations through public pressure. On the other hand, attempts will be made to alert cargo ships and commercial vessels in vicinity to the vessel in distress.

The number of the Alarm Phone will be disseminated mainly through direct contacts with migrant and refugee communities in the important transit countries of Northern Africa and in Turkey. The NGO is also distributing leaflets that inform about the risks of crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Besides notes on how to reduce the risks, the Alarm Phone number is provided.

The project is actively involved in all three regions through which migrants and refugees attempt to reach the countries of the EU: The Aegean Sea (between Greece and Turkey). the Central Mediterranean Sea (between Libya/Tunisia and Italy) and the Western Mediterranean Sea (between Morocco and Spain).

Support this necessary and useful project and help them maintaining and extending their strucutures and services for refugees in distress!
April 01st, 2016
type:Crowd Funding, Donation, NGO, Project
by:Deniz Zehra Tavli

Jadal is an open space in Amman, the capital of Jordan, where cultural activities and knowledge sharing fuse to evoke and spread new societal values. The not-for-profit project aims at encouraging creativity, innovation and collective activities that benefit the community. It creates a space for self-exploration, questioning, sharing skills and experiences, critical discussions, reflection and artistic expression.

Jadal is situated in one of the old houses on al-Kalha stairs, connecting Downtown, the busy old heart of the city and Jabal L’Weibdeh, a neighbourhood bursting with ambitious start-ups and creative initiatives. During the 3 years of its existence, Jadal has become a safe space for local groups such as students, urban refugees, expatriates, artists, thinkers and activists.

The cornerstone of the project is seeking to build a horizontal management model and to assure financial independence. The space has been run by a diverse community which believes that these features might contribute positively to questioning the current hierarchical world system and creating an alternative way of functioning.

Support Jadal and contribute to the sustainability of a space that is comitted to assure that as many people as possible exercise their rights to culture, arts, education, as well as critical and free thought.