Timidria, L'Association de Défense des Droits de L’Homme et de Développement (in English, ‘Association for the Defense of Human Rights and Development’) works to improve the socio-economic situation of victims of slavery by reintegrating them into society.The organisation tries to empower former victims through the practice of income-generating skills. This is also linked to the idea of protection of children, and the promotion of respect for and dignity of human beings. Through these ideas Timidria strives to preserve social peace and promote national unity. The organisation’s overall mission is to contribute to the promotion of human rights in Niger, by focusing on several specific objectives:
- Educating and raising awareness of the Nigeriens on their duties in a democratic context;
- Denouncing and combating all forms of slavery in Niger;
- Strengthening social peace and the consolidating national unity by the popularisation of law and the promotion of training on prejudices and conflict management;
- Helping with the socio-economic integration of victims of slavery through advocacy, training and financial support.
Timidria is present throughout Niger; in nine sections and regional representations, 34 sub-sections, 182 area offices at rural and urban communities, and 682 offices in villages and camps. It has about 300,000 members and supporters.
In its 33 years of existence, Timidria has earned a credible reputation among the organisations defending human rights in Niger. Among several initiatives, Timidria raises awareness among the most vulnerable of law 2003-25, of 13 June 2003, which criminalises slavery in Niger. It does this with the support of judges, clerics, administration and traditional chiefs.
Timidria has received the following international recognition:
- International Human Rights Award in 2004
- The Great Trophy Initiative Africa in 2005
- The International Human Rights Prize of the General Council of the Bars of Spain 2008 edition, awarded to Hadijatou Mani Kourao
As part of the promotion of education and literacy for grassroots communities, Timidria has created 36 community schools – 30 in Tillabéry and six in the Tahoua region – with a workforce of more than 45,000 children, half of whom are girls from marginalised and poorly educated households.
Timidria also runs a project, along with several donors and other associates, to develop the acquisition of arable land that will benefit former slaves and allow them to produce an income.
Timidria's ultimate aim is to allow all the people of Niger to have access to land, water and education to improve society.