We believe that building networks and coalitions is a key element in the protection of human rights.
Minority Rights Group Europe (MRGE) was established in 1996 in Budapest as an independent organization under the wider Minority Rights Group family. We aim to promote and protect minority and indigenous peoples’ rights with a primary regional focus on Europe and Central Asia. We have recently focused on South Asia and the bordering regions of the Southern Mediterranean, the Middle East, and North Africa.
Our work addresses the exclusion of ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities through capacity development and empowerment, media advocacy and networking. Our portfolio includes training activists and media professionals, developing narratives that counter hate speech, producing authoritative materials on key minority rights issues and supporting activists in getting their voices heard. Additionally, we operate with an intersectional lens, paying particular attention to how multiple and intersecting identities shape the lives of minorities and indigenous peoples.
Our programmes are designed to strengthen civil society by providing financial, technical and legal support, building capacity and supporting advocacy. We have strong relationships with many partners in Central and Eastern Europe, Russia, the Balkans, the Caucasus, Türkiye and Central and South Asia. Increasingly, we are a facilitator that bolsters collaboration between civil society organizations (CSOs) at national and regional levels.
In Europe, for example, we established the Eastern Partnership Minorities Network, counting 80 member organizations, 200+ journalists in Central Europe, and the first-ever network of minority organizations in Türkiye. We are also active members of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum and the Civic Solidarity Platform. Meanwhile, in Asia, we have supported the emergence of regional collaboration among religious minority organizations such as the South Asia Collective.
As our work expands, so does our presence. We are closely connected to various regional and international human rights mechanisms. Our office maintains a dialogue with the OSCE, while we are supported by advisors in Brussels close to EU institutions, and in Geneva close to UN agencies. Our network of regional correspondents keeps us abreast of developments in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Our office in Budapest acts as a focal point for multiple CSO networks, supporting joint advocacy initiatives towards the EU institutions, the OSCE and the Council of Europe.
worked in to date
civil society organizations
supported to work on activities benefitting minorities and indigenous peoples
Our current programmes
MRG Legal Officer Andrea Spitalszkly speaking at a roundtable on cases of discrimination against Roma. Credit: Emília Lola Eördögh
Omoye Akhagba of subgrantee Fundacja dla Somalii speaking at MRG’S MARIO programme central training in Budapest, October 2023. Credit: Emília Lola Eördögh.
Zsofia Farkas, MRG Europe director, speaking at MRG’S MARIO programme central training in Budapest, October 2023. Credit: Emília Lola Eördögh.
MARIO programme team Tamás Büchler, Antonio García Cazorla and Ifra Asad (left-right) pictured outside the European Commission during the MARIO programme’s exchange and advocacy meetings in Brussels, October 2023. Credit: Tamás Büchler/MRG
The MRG Europe team. Credit: MRG.