13 November 2017

Maastricht Mayor opens Shelter City Maastricht exhibition

On Friday, 17 November at 16.00, Mayor Annemarie Penn-te Strake opens the exhibition ‘Shelter City Maastricht - Portraits of Human Rights Defenders’ in Maastricht’s Center Céramique. Maastricht University is one of the partners in this project; especially the Faculty of Law has been involved in providing work spaces and by facilitating interaction between students and human rights defenders.

The Shelter City programme, an initiative of the human rights organization Justice and Peace, allows campaigners and activists to temporarily relocate to Maastricht and 9 other Dutch shelter cities to escape harassment and threats, expand their network, and gain new knowledge.

Maastricht has been a Shelter City since 2015. Together with Maastricht University, the Mondiaal Centrum, Amnesty Maastricht, and University College Maastricht, the municipality has already sheltered 6 human rights defenders from various countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

Documentary and press photographer Daniella van Bergen portrays people who stand up for human rights:

For two years, I've been able to meet these extraordinary people; people who have touched my heart. Their stories of emotional and existential struggle, bravery, and loneliness have made me realize how valuable and vulnerable my own human rights are. With my photos I want to give a voice to these important people.

Shelter City celebrates its first lustrum in 2017. In the last 5 years, the network expanded to 10 Dutch cities that together sheltered 56 human rights defenders from 34 countries. During the opening, partners and participants of Shelter City Maastricht will also be present. For more information, visit www.sheltercity.nl or the Facebook page.

The opening ends at 17:00 with drinks and a visit to the exhibition. Admission is free.

photo expo