Maastricht

Despite its location close to the German and Belgian borders, Maastricht is truly a city without borders, where everyone can feel at home. In 2015, Maastricht became a Shelter City and has ever since offered safe spaces to human rights defenders at risk. Shelter City Maastricht believes that together we can solve global challenges, and contributes to solving Sustainable Development Goal 16.

Our support

Rest and re-energize

Maastricht is a welcoming safe space for human rights defenders to unwind for a few months. In Shelter City Maastricht, it is our mission to make the defenders feel at home and to support them in improving their personal wellbeing, while they are away from the risks of their work.

Tailored support and capacity-building

At Shelter City Maastricht, human rights defenders receive support tailored to their individual needs, for example medical care, psychological support, security trainings and development of expertise. Shelter City Maastricht also offers guests the opportunity to take courses at Maastricht University in order to expand their knowledge and strengthen their skills set.

Engage with local allies

In Shelter City Maastricht, defenders can connect with local citizens, students, and organizations to exchange knowledge and together promote human rights. Because of its location, Maastricht also offers easy access to EU institutions and international organizations in neighbouring countries, where defenders can meet even more allies.

Our team

Nathalie Ummels
Nathalie Ummels

Shelter City Maastricht Coordinator, Mondiaal Maastricht

Ann Damoiseaux-McBride
Ann Damoiseaux-McBride

Shelter City Maastricht Team Leader, Mondiaal Maastricht

Dave Sheehan
Dave Sheehan

Chairman, Amnesty International Maastricht

Fons Coomans
Fons Coomans

UNESCO Chair in Human Rights and Peace at the Faculty of Law, Maastricht University

Petro Hermans
Petro Hermans

Senior adviser on Administrative Affairs and External Relations, Municipality of Maastricht

Peter Hendriks
Peter Hendriks

Volunteer and former board member, Mondiaal Maastricht

Katinka Kurz
Katinka Kurz

Shelter City buddy

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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