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Thank you for your interest in the Sustaining Critical Support for Torture Survivors project! Make sure you review the 'Things to know' to the right before you make your donation!
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Sustaining Critical Support for Torture Survivors
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Canadian Centre for International Justice
We want to launch a training institute that will generate sustained revenue for CCIJ, the only Canadian charity providing legal support to torture survivors. With direct donations, we have $18,000. Can you help?
National, Canada
$30,000 target
days left

About this project

The Philippe Kirsch Institute will deliver top-notch training to legal professionals with the goal of the improving the provision of legal services in Canada, in particular for vulnerable and under-served people.

The best part? This institute will generate sustained revenue for the Canadian Centre for International Justice (CCIJ).

Why should you help launch a for-profit venture? Because every dollar made by the Institute over its lifetime will fund CCIJ’s charitable work. CCIJ is the only organization in Canada providing expert legal support to survivors of genocide, torture and other atrocities. Our cases go to criminal and civil courts in Canada and internationally. What’s more, we work on law reform and provide input to Canada’s foreign policy on international justice.  

In just five short years, CCIJ’s roster of clients has grown to 47. We have provided legal expertise as intervenors in cases that have gone to the Supreme Court of Canada and will have global impact. We have a critical law reform initiative that has gone before Parliament. We have trained and involved about 150 legal professionals and law students in our work. And we’ve been able to do all of this and more with the most modest of staff & resources.

There’s so much more to be done. And this new specialized training institute is a self-sustaining way to help us do it.

CCIJ is extraordinarily well-positioned to launch such an institute: our expertise is unparalleled, drawn from an extensive network of leaders & keen minds, and we already have significant training experience.

We just need your help to get the Institute off the ground. 

Project Impact

At any given moment, thousands of survivors of genocide, torture or other atrocities across Canada are in need of legal support. How many will benefit from our new “CCIJ Training Institute” is innumerable, and how much they will benefit is clear.

Take for example the case of Houshang Bouzari, who in 1993 was detained by Iranian officials and tortured.  After his family was forced to pay to secure his release from jail, Houshang managed to escape Iran and bring his family to Canada in 1998. Wanting to hold Iran accountable for his torture, Houshang filed a lawsuit in 2001. But the case was dismissed under Canada's State Immunity Act. It was CCIJ experts who represented Mr. Bouzari in the suit against Iran, and we are now heavily involved in efforts – through both litigation & law reform – to overcome the immunity issues that arose in the Bouzari case. At the same time, others avenues to hold individuals accountable for Mr. Bouzari’s torture are being pursued.

Hundreds of cases like Mr. Bouzari’s require in-depth and compassionate expertise from people who are equipped to handle the myriad of legal, psychological and cross-cultural issues involved. Our new specialized training institute will provide valuable tools to those serving these clients, and to lawyers working with other vulnerable people & communities. 

Use of project funds

To get CCIJ’s new specialized training institute off the ground, our fundraising goal of $30,000 will go directly to developing the training curriculum, branding & promoting the initiative, and for a few key tools we need.  Ultimately, the Kirsch Institute will fund itself while redirecting precious resources back into the critical work of CCIJ.

All donors will be recognized on CCIJ's website. Those who give $5,000 or more will join the Kirsch Institute’s “Founders’ Circle” and become part of the story of how a Canadian charity significantly enhanced its long-term sustainability by being entrepreneurial.

Project milestones

We plan to launch the Institute in the second half of 2013. Once the required funds are in place, we will develop the Institute’s brand, and the marketing and communications strategies and tools, including the website. The first two years of course curriculum will be created, with course topics, instructors, agendas, and logistical arrangements. An on-line portal to host pre-recorded training sessions will be finalized. The business plan will be adjusted and refined as we prepare for the launch, with the help of a wonderful group of CCIJ advisors. 

CCIJ is committed to helping other charities and non-profits explore their own potential to launch a business in support of their mission.  We plan to document and make available our process and key learnings. Because of the extensive networks of the CCIJ team, this means that all donations for CCIJ’s social enterprise will ultimately support the Canadian charitable sector more broadly, as well as organizations doing good work in other countries.

donated of $30,000
days to go
This project is eligible for tax receipts
Project ended successfully on 10:10PM March 4, 2013 PST
The Canadian Centre for International Justice/Centre canadien pour la justice internationale is a charitable organization that works with survivors of genocide, torture and other atrocities to seek redress and bring perpetrators to justice, both internationally and in Canada.