The city of Groningen is a small but lively city in the north of the Netherlands. The creation of Shelter City Groningen began as an initiative by local political parties Student & Stad and D66 in 2015, who both believe in human rights and tolerance. Today, Shelter City Groningen is a collaboration of a broad spectrum of organizations and people, including the municipality of Groningen, University College Groningen, and others.

Our support

Rest and re-energize

Groningen provides human rights defenders at risk with a welcoming and safe environment where they can take time for themselves, rest and re-energise. Here, they can pay attention to their wellbeing, enjoy the city’s lively environment, 

Tailored support and capacity-building

In Shelter City Groningen, our guests are behind the steering wheel of their stay. We offer them tailored and flexible support to meet their needs and wishes, from physical and physiological care, to courses at the local universities, and recreational activities. Our team of energetic students ensures the guests have a fruitful stay tailored to their needs. 

Engage with local allies

We believe Shelter City is a two-way street. On the one side, human rights defenders can spread awareness about the situation in their country with audiences here in the Netherlands, and on the other side, students and local citizens can learn more about human rights situations around the world and support the work of human rights defenders.

Our stories

Wiecza, fighting for a better future for Venezuela
Learn more about Wiecza, a Venezuelan lawyer and human rights defender.
Shelter City Eindhoven
Numan, fighting for LGBTIQ+ rights in Malaysia
Learn more about Numan and his work to support the LGBTIQ+ community in Malaysia.
Shelter City Amsterdam
Manjula Pradeep, the inspiring activist behind Shelter City
Manjula Pradeep is an Indian human rights defenders and the inspiration behind Shelter City.
Shelter City Europe
Meet Caroline Rucah, Kenyan LGBTIQ+ rights defender
Watch a short documentary and learn more about Caroline Rucah, LGBTIQ+ rights defenders from Kenya.
Shelter City Utrecht
Asha’s photo hangs proudly on my wall
Nikki supports human rights defenders that stay in Shelter City Rotterdam. According to Nikki, being a part of Shelter City has changed her life.
Shelter City Rotterdam
Louisa and Asha: defending human rights in Nigeria and India during the COVID-19 pandemic
Louisa and Asha are two human rights defenders and former Shelter City guests who shared with us how their work has changed during the pandemic.
Shelter City Rotterdam
Mohammed Azaiza shares his experience of being stuck in Gaza while dreaming of Amsterdam
Mohammed Azaiza is a human rights defender from Gaza who was unable to relocate to Shelter City.
Shelter City Amsterdam
How William’s perseverance left a mark on numerous residents of Nijmegen
Yara was part of the Shelter City Nijmegen team for two years. During her time, she met inspiring human rights defenders such as William from Uganda.
Shelter City Nijmegen

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