In the Khyber Pakhtunkwha province of Pakistan, NGOs run by women and focusing on women’s issues have come under increasing attack in July 2011. Local Taliban and organized criminal gangs pose a constant threat to these organizations, working to stop their activities and accusing them of pushing a “U.S.-led agenda” through their promotion of women’s rights. Due to the corruption and incompetence of local police officials and security forces, the majority of these occurrences continue unnoticed and unaddressed. When previous grantee Grassroot in Action (GIA) began receiving threatening phone calls and heard someone firing a gun in front of their office as a “warning” for them to cease their activities, it requested funds to secure its office. With UAF funds, it planned to install security cameras and an alarm system, and purchased mobile phones, metal detectors and fingerprint locks for the doors to ensure that its members could continue their valuable work safely.
The mission of GIA is to play a pivotal role in positively changing the lives of women irrespective of their economic profile, race, ethnic & religious background, through an armor of knowledge, human rights awareness, and social responsibility. It works to advocate for and to promote the rights of women to make free and informed choices and to create an enabling environment to exercise their rights.