Rights Reframed

NMAP created Rights Reframed in response to the sharp increase in far-right digital activism, which is well-funded, savvy, and has contributed to the rapid spread of disinformation and hate speech that undermines human rights globally. 

Rights Reframed is a mentorship and movement building program to cultivate communities of practice grounded in narrative strategy, and to bring unlikely allies into justice movements around the world. Together, participants explore how audience-centric visual storytelling and strategic digital activism can change the tide on some of the toughest social issues facing activists around the world—including challenging government or corporate disinformation, or entrenched, harmful cultural narratives. 

Rooted in our decade of partnerships with human rights organizations in more than 30 countries, we post open calls for cohorts of activists based in a certain region or working on a particular thematic issue, and mentor them over the course of 12 months to develop, produce, and distribute unique visual narrative change campaigns. We teach NMAP’s multi-disciplinary framing methodology and, through three in-person convenings, bring in a range of experts—cognitive and behavioral scientists, regional media experts, artists and filmmakers—to help expand the toolset and mindsets of our participants. 

By recruiting mentors for future cohorts from among our growing Rights Reframed alumni network, we keep participants engaged and immersed in the narrative change tactics that can help progressive movements adapt and become more effective. 


Program Alumni

2019-2020 Cohort
Project Theme: The Intersection Between the Right to Housing and Corruptoin

Ulvi Hasanov is a journalist, human rights activist, and co-leader of Nida Civic Movement. He is the co-founder and editor of Abzas.net, an  independent media outlet based in Baku—one of the few working independent media outlets in Azerbaijan. Ulvi has been very involved in a variety of youth movements in Azerbaijan and participated in NMAP and IPHR’s media training program focused on religious freedom in 2018. His Rights Reframed project was a short documentary showing the plight and strength of families who were violently displaced from their homes by the state under the guise of “imminent domain.” His documentary was intended to support their international court case.

Astghik Karapetian is a journalist and editor-in-chief for Iravaban.net, an Armenian media outlet focused on anti-corruption and law. She also provides PR support for the civil society organization Anti-Corruption Coalition of Armenia, and is the Public Relations Coordinator for the EU-funded “Commitment to Constructive Dialogue” program. Her Rights Reframed project was a graphic novel that highlighted the ways in which bias against orphans in employment can result in pervasive homelessness for that population. Her goal was to reframe the concept of Armenian family, applying commonly held family values to congregate housing settings in an effort to destigmatize adults that grew up in group homes.

Lusine Kosakyan is a young peace builder and human rights defender in Armenia specializing in data research and analysis. She has worked on a number of human rights campaigns, including the Crash Expectations campaign, which brought together young women from Post-Soviet states to stand against gender-based discrimination and sexism in everyday life. Her Rights Reframed project was a life-sized board game where players learn about the pitfalls and rights-building opportunities around student housing and illegal apartments.

Nurzhaina Oktyabrova works for the Osh-based organization International Center Interbilim, which is a member of the Central Asian NGO Network for the Right to Adequate Housing, which includes four countries— Kyrgyzstan-Kazakhstan-Uzbekistan-Tajikistan. In her role, Nurzhaina led a group inside the country on the the right to residual housing in Kyrgyzstan. Her project for Rights Reframed was an interactive map that provided transparency to the municipal land use process in Osh.

Asyl Osmonalieva is a freelance journalist and national coordinator for SCOOP in Kyrgyzstan. SCOOP is a network and support structure for investigative journalists in Eastern Europe, Russia, Caucasus and Central Asia. She also works as a media expert for IDLO Kyrgyzstan and heads the platform Danaker. Asyl has a passion for connecting online and offline dialog and action. Her Rights Reframed project was an online “choose your own adventure”-style quest where players learn the risks and legal ramifications of property purchases, including hidden loopholes that enable developers and others to take advantage of buyers.

Timur Sharipov is a university student at Tajik State University of Law, Business and Politics in Khujand studying toward a degree in World Economics. His activism and volunteer work centers around human rights, where he focuses on using new methods to engage and disseminate information among young people. In his spare time, he produces educational and informational videos. His Rights Reframed project was a comic book series for pre-adolescents and adolescents that primed them against corruption and engaging in corrupt behavior. His was the first comic series ever published in Tajikistan.

2018-2019 Cohort

Vahagn Antonyan is a journalist from Armenia. His project, titled Families in the Dark, was a short documentary film investigating one of many military deaths in Armenia during peacetime. 

Timur Karpov is a photographer and videographer from Uzbekistan. His project positions the Uzbek cotton industry’s environmental and human rights violations alongside each other, speaking to major clothing brands and appealing to their environmental commitments and public stances on sustainability.

Svetlana Knyazeva is a Brussels-based human rights activist from Russia. Her Rights Reframed project, titled Atlas Central Asia, used Instagram as a platform to spark pride among youth in Central Asia for their unique cultural and environmental heritage and identity. 

Natalia Li is a photographer from Kazakhstan. Her project was a multimedia traveling exhibition, titled Oil Dreams, that challenges master narratives around oil drilling in Western regions of the country.

Naira Meliksetyan is a lawyer and public servant from Armenia. Her project was a short documentary that looks at the mining industry’s impact on people in Armenia, reframing the typical environmental narrative of destruction and doom and focusing instead on empowering Armenian youth to demand their human and environmental rights.  

Natalia Rezneac is an activist from Moldova. Her project, titled Liberté, Égalité, Sororité, was a short documentary that aims to take on the pervasive culture of misogyny and domestic violence in Moldova. 

Rahim Shaliyev is an Azerbaijani journalist based in Georgia. His project, titled Azeri Rights in The Republic of Georgia, is a two-part short animated piece (part 1, part 2) that focuses on the rights of Azeri minority in Georgia, as well as other ethnic minority populations who live in the country. 

Eka Tsotsoria is a Georgian filmmaker. Her project was an experimental docu-music video titled If I Can’t Dance, It’s Not My Revolution that explores the ways that sexism and policing women’s bodies undermines justice movements. 

Halyna Vasylenko is a Ukrainian activist. Her project was a multi-facted social campaign titled Waiting For You at Home that blended online and offline actions to build public support for Crimean political prisoners, especially those imprisoned as a result of ethnic discrimination. 

Olga Volynska is a human rights activist, writer, documentarian, and journalist from Ukraine. Her project was a short documentary titled Unbroken Women that follows the life of three former female civil POWs. 

Maryna Zastavna is a Ukrainian communications and outreach consultant. Her project, titled Do You Know Your NGO?,  was a “man-on-the-street,” vox pop-style video project that uses humor to look at the apathy, lack of knowledge, and, at times, direct hostility Ukrainian human rights organizations face from the public.