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PBI Ireland Table Quiz - Toners Pub - Tuesday Dec 6th 7pm - 9.30pm

PBI Ireland is hosting a Table Quiz next Tuesday, 6th December.

Venue: Toners Pub, Lower Baggot Street

Time: 7pm to 9.30pm

Spot prizes on the night, and a raffle.

Come and test your knowledge for a great cause. Bring friends!

C:\Users\Karen\Documents\PBI\GGNN\PBI Eire\WG Communications & Social Media\PBI logos\PBI logo.jpg       #LASCWedsTalks         

"Subterranean Voices"

Business & Human Rights in the Coal Mining Region of Northern Mexico

PBI Ireland, the Latin America Solidarity Centre (#LASCWedsTalks), and the Mexico-Ireland Solidarity Collective (MISC) will host a public talk in Dublin with two women human rights defenders (WHRDs) from Coahuila in Northern Mexico - Cristina Auerbach and María Esmeralda Saldaña. Both women work alongside coal-miners and other workers in the extractive industries in their struggle for justice, safe and fair working conditions, and basic human rights. They advocate for workers rights under extreme pressure and difficult conditions and have been targeted because of this work.  They are in Europe after presenting at this year's UN forum on Business and Human Rights in Geneva.

Please join us as they tell us first-hand of their experiences defending the "voices of the underground/voces del subterraneo" in Northern Mexico.  Presentations will be followed by a Q&A session and discussion.

Where: Room 207, 2nd Floor, Liberty Hall, SIPTU buildings, D1.

When:  Tuesday the 29th November, 7-9pm.

Please confirm you attendance at your earliest convenience to pbiireland@peacebrigades.org.

Profile of Organization:

Pasta de Conchos Family Organization (PCFO)

The Pasta de Conchos Family Organisation has worked for over a decade in the Coal Mining Zone of the state of Coahuila, insisting that the bodies of 63 miners still trapped in the Pasta de Conchos mine be retrieved, while also demanding better safety conditions for miners who continue to work in the area. PBI has accompanied the organisation and its director Cristina Auerbach since 2014 due to the high level of risk they face stemming from their legitimate work in defence of human rights.

The Pasta de Conchos Family Organisation (PCFO) was formed in 2006, after the disaster in Mine Number 8 of the Pasta de Conchos Unit, located in the San Juan Sabinas municipality in Coahuila and managed by the Grupo Mexico corporation. After the disaster, 65 miners were trapped inside the mine and perished. This led the families of the miners to come together and demand that the bodies be retrieved; only two bodies have been recovered to date. Little by little, they began to raise awareness about the precarious working conditions faced by miners in the area, especially regarding workplace safety.

Human rights defender Cristina Auerbach then joined forces with the families, and together they formed the Pasta de Conchos Family Organisation. Thanks to their analysis and documentation, the organization has been able to bring the Pasta de Conchos case both to the IACHR (Inter-American Commission on Human Rights) and to the ILO (International Labor Organisation). Nevertheless, 10 years have passed since the tragedy and the impunity persists.

Since 2009, the PCFO has taken up other cases, like the collapse of the Lulú Mine in Muzquiz which left two dead, or the explosion of BINSA Well 3 in Sabinas, where 14 miners lost their lives. Over the years, the organisation has been broadening its line of work, inspecting workplace safety conditions in mines, documenting workplace accidents, and accompanying local miners through judicial proceedings. Through this work, the PCFO has helped make mining labor rights a priority in Mexican public opinion.

Speaker Profiles

1) Maria Esmeralda Saldaña Saldaña


Maria Esmeralda Saldaña Saldaña has worked to support the Cloete office of Pasta de Conchos Family Organisation (OFPC) for the past two years. During this time much of her work has been focused on organising awareness of the requests of the families of the 65 miners who were trapped in the Pasta de Conchos Mine after the accident in 2006, and demanding better safety conditions for miners in the region. As part of her human rights work, she has also given voice to requests from other residents of the region who have been affected by extractive activities in residential areas.

Esmeralda has also given support by organising peaceful demonstrations and managing many public relations activities for the organisation. She has also acted as a liaison with the community when Cristina Auerbach, director of OFPC, is not around. Due to her active role in the community and the coordination of peaceful resistance to illegal mining in the region, Esmeralda has suffered persecution, threats and other forms of harassment with the sole purpose of intimidating her so that she could not carry out her legitimate work in defence of human rights.

2) Cristina Auerbach


Cristina Auerbach is the director of Pasta de Conchos Family Organisation(OFPC). Cristina, alongside with families that were affected by the explosion and human rights defenders, founded the organisation in 2006 following the disaster caused by the explosion in Mine 8, Pasta de Conchos Unit, in which 65 workers were trapped. The accident resulted in the death of the miners who were trapped underground and Cristina Auerbach has advocated for the rescue of the bodies and so that their families can achieve justice. Since 2006 Cristina has broaden her work to provide support to mining workers in activity seeking better working conditions and to communities that have been negatively affected by illegal mining in the region. PBI has accompanied OFPC and Cristina Auerbach since 2014 due to the high risk they face because of their legitimate work in defense of human rights.

In 2016, the risk Cristina Auerbach and other members of OFPC face has escalated, and she has also been the target of a smear campaign in various media in the area. These events culminated in a public statement issued by PBI, also from other international organisations such as Front Line Defenders. Cristina faces a very high level of risk by acting in the isolated coal mining area (Zona Carbonífera) of Coahuila and, beyond that, has been a constant target of intimidation and threats for her work in the defence of human rights since 2007.



Previous Events

Colombia: Building Peace from the Bottom Up

WHAT:     Public talk and panel discussion

Two leading Colombian human rights defenders, Fr. Alberto Franco and Jani Silva, will speak about their work at a community level in areas affected by the armed conflict in Colombia. Both have been actively involved in bringing local voices to the peace process and will speak to the challenges facing the peace process on the ground. Their organisations work both with victims of the armed conflict and on territorial and land rights, working alongside communities who are risk of displacement because of large scale investment projects and the exploitation of natural resources. 


Father Alberto Franco - Executive Secretary of the Inter-church Justice and Peace Commission (CIJP), Colombia.

Jani Silva - legal representative of ADIPSA (the Amazon Integral Sustainable Development Association).

Karen Jeffares - Coordinator of Peace Brigades International (PBI) Ireland.

Louise Winstanley - Programme and Advocacy Manager at ABColombia.

The talk will provide further background information on the Colombian peace process and look at ways the international community, and Ireland specifically, can support  lasting peace in Colombia. 

Presentations will be followed by a Q&A session and discussion.

WHERE:     Wood Quay Venue, Dublin 8
WHEN:       Wednesday 4th of May from 6.30pm-8.30pm (registration from 6pm)

Please confirm your attendance at your earliest convenience to pbiireland(at)remove-this.peacebrigades.org. For more information about all of our speakers, please visit www.pbi-ireland.org


Fr. Alberto Franco is a respected leader of the Inter-church Commision for Justice and Peace (CIJP), an inter-faith human rights organization that works alongside communities affected by violent conflict. They support communities, organizations and internally displaced people to affirm their basic human rights and are engaged in specific activities to address truth, justice and reparation for victims of the internal armed conflict. The Commission's work focuses on the protection of territory and land rights, and they have engaged in important legal actions on a national and international level to support communities entitled to reparation and those vulnerable to further displacement because of economic interests. They have also spoken at the ongoing peace dialogues in Havana about the security needs and ongoing risks faced by communities on the ground.

The CIJP is accompanied by Peace Brigades International in Colombia and have suffered ongoing attacks and intimidation throughout the years they have dedicated to protecting human rights in Colombia. For more about their work see: https://pbicolombia.org/accompanied-organizations-2/cijp/

Jani Silva is a community leader and human rights activist from the Amazonas region of Colombia. She is the legal representative of ADIPSA (The Amazon Integral Devlopment Association). This organization advocates for environmental and land rights for small scale farmers, specifically around the legal figure of the Peasant Reserve Zone (ZRC). Her community and the region she works in, has been negatively affected by the actions of private oil companies who wish to extract natural resources in the area. She has publicly denounced grave human rights violations and breeches of International Humanitarian Law that have occurred as a result of their interest. She has also discussed proposals on truth, justice, reparations and non-repetition as part of her ongoing engagement with the Network of Communities Constructing Peace (CONPAZ) bringing a grassroots perspective to the proposals being discussed in Havana. 

Jani has been threatened and harassed by illegal armed groups and private actors operating in the region as a result of her work.

Karen Jeffares is a human rights activist with five years experience working in Latin America. She studied Anthropology and Sociology as an undergraduate at NUI Maynooth and was awarded an M.Phil in Peace Studies from the Irish School of Ecumenics at Trinity College Dublin in 2008. Her specialization in Peace Studies was in non-violent forms of conflict resolution, and while studying this area she became interested in international protective accompaniment - a model of social activism inspired by Ghandian non-violent philosophy. On completion of her studies she moved to Central America where she learnt Spanish and began putting the theory of international accompaniment into practice.

She has worked and volunteered in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Northern Mexico, and Colombia - taking part in campaigns and accompaniment projects designed to protect the human rights of local people who are demanding social change and justice in the areas and regions where they work. For the last six years she has been involved with Peace Brigades International and volunteered for two years on their Colombia project (2010-2012) and one year in Guatemala (2013). She is a founding member and coordinator of the PBI country group in Ireland.

Louise Winstanley is the Programme and Advocacy Manager at ABColombia. ABColombia is the advocacy project of a group of five leading UK and Irish organisations with programmes in Colombia: CAFOD, Christian Aid UKI, Oxfam GB, SCIAF and Trócaire. Amnesty International and Peace Brigades International (PBI) are observers. Founded in 1997 to work on the question of forced internal displacement, it has since expanded its mandate to cover human rights and development. ABColombia's purpose is to influence decision makers in the UK and Ireland and, through them, European level decision making with a view to resolving the human rights and humanitarian crisis in Colombia and achieve a lasting peace and equitable and sustainable development.

Louise Joined ABColombia in February 2010 having previously worked as Advocacy Officer for Peace Brigades International UK Section. Before this she spent two years in Colombia working as an international observer with PBI. She has an MSc in Globalisation and Latin American Development, has contributed to a book on Unarmed Resistance and Global Solidarity and written papers on human rights and globalisation.

Past Events

PBI Ireland to host Orientation Day in Dublin

PBI Ireland will be facilitating a workshop on the 30th of January in Dublin (from 9am-5pm) offering a chance to learn more about our work in the field and to explore our nonviolent methods of human rights protection - specifically international protective accompaniment. It will be a one day participatory workshop using concrete examples from the field that provides a taste of what it is like to volunteer on our field projects.  It is geared towards people thinking about volunteering on one of our projects or here at PBI Ireland, and for anyone interested in practical approaches nonviolent conflict intervention

For full details of the event please see flyer below. To register, email alexandra.dinca123@gmail.com by Wednesday 27th of January. We are requesting a small contribution from participants to cover the cost of running the event (lunch included!).ddd.

PBI Ireland.



PBI Ireland at the Irish Aid Volunteering Fair 2015 #IAFair2015

Come join us at this years Irish Aid Volunteering Fair on Saturday the 10th of October at Dublin Castle!  If you are interested in volunteering on our field projects or here in Ireland with the Country Group this is the perfect opportunity to speak to us in person about it.  Volunteers will be at the PBI stand from 11am until 4pm and can answer any questions you may have about volunteering with PBI.

For a first hand account of volunteering on a PBI field project, read this blog written by PBI Colombia volunteer Niamh Áine Ní Bhríain:

For more information on the Fair see: http://www.comhlamh.org/come-see-us-at-iafair2015/

Or join the event on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/984755984920984/https://www.facebook.com/events/984755984920984/

Or follow it on Twitter: #IAFair2015 and #VolOps


Invitation: "Honduras Human Rights Heroes"


Honduran women human rights defenders will join us to speak about the realities and risks involved in defending human rights in Honduras. 


Organised by: PBI Ireland, Trocaire and Front Line Defenders.

Speakers: Juana Esquivel, Karen Valladares, Norma Chavez and Bertha Oliva. 

Date: Tuesday, 24th of March at 6:30 pm.

Venue: Filmbase, Curved Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2


Public Launch of Peace Brigades International - Ireland

PBI Ireland wants to invite you to its Public Launch which takes place on Wednesday 26th of November at 7pm at the Irish School of Ecumenics-Loyola Institute Building, Trinity College Dublin, College Green, Dublin 2.


The event celebrates the establishment of a PBI Country Group in Ireland and will explain how we protect Human Rights Defenders (HRD) at risk. We will have speakers from Colombia, Honduras and Kenya (countries where PBI has field projects), who will tell us about the situation for Human Rights Defenders on the ground and the relevance of PBI's work there.

Mary Lawlor, Director of Front Line Defenders, will speak about the EU guidelines on the protection of Human Rights Defenders to mark the 10th anniversary of the guidelines.

Following the presentation, PBI Ireland invites attendee's to visit our photo exhibition entitled "Faces of the Struggle: close-up's of human rights defenders". This exhibition aims to pay sincere homage to the many Human Rights Defenders who we have accompanied over the last 30 years.  

The photo exhibition includes a total of 22 photographs, mainly taken by PBI volunteers, and seeks to reflect the diversity of individuals and organisations we have accompanied during that time and who continue to seek our support for the future. Special thanks to PBI Spain for offering us the opportunity to reproduce it here.

There will be a wine reception and light refreshments provided.

Please confirm your attendance to pbiireland@peacebrigades.org 




Yomaira Mendoza is a leader of the Afro-descendant community in the Curvaradó River Basin in northern Chocó (Colombia). She works with Enrique Cabezas leaders of a land rights movement that claims the restitution of lands for the communities of Curbaradó in the Uraba region in Colombia. On the night of 24 July 2014, Yomaira Mendoza and Enrique Cabezas were victims of an attempted attack while at refuge in a safe-house. The two unknown male attackers were stopped only by an armed bodyguard who restrained the intruders and called the police. However, the attackers managed to escape and, minutes later, family members of Yomaira Mendoza and Enrique Cabezas received via SMS threatening to them for their human rights work. A further death threat was received via SMS by relatives. 



Donald Hernández Palma is a Honduran lawyer and human rights defender. He specialises in criminal and environmental law, with a particular focus on mining in Latin America. He is a member of the Latin American Lawyers’ Network, a network that works against the negative impacts of transnational extractive companies in Latin America.

Since 2010, Donald has worked for the Honduran Centre for the Promotion of Community Development (Centro Hondureño de Promoción Para el Desarrollo Comunitario -CEHPRODEC) as coordinator of the legal department and is also currently the coordinator of the Human Rights and Environmental Department. In representation of CEHPRODEC, Donald is the facilitator of the National Coalition of Environmental Organizations and Networks (Coalición Nacional de Organizaciones y Redes Ambientales – CONROA), an organisation that represents more than 40 environmental organizations from all over Honduras. 



Ruth Mumbi Meshack is a community mobiliser, and is the founder and current National Coordinator of Bunge la Wamama, a women's chapter of Bunge la Mwananchi a movement that conducts strong advocacy and campaigning on issues of social justice and accountability in different parts of Kenya.


PBI Ireland, Comhlámh, 12 Parliament Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, Ireland

International Office, Development House, 56-64 Leonard Street, London EC2A 4LT, U.K. Tel: +44 20 7065 0775
To find your nearest PBI office visit the international contact page