Who we are / About US

Who we are

Terra de Direitos is a Human Rights organization working to defend, promote and seek enforcement of rights, especially economic, social, cultural and environmental rights (ESCER, or Dhesca in Portuguese).

The organization came into being in Curitiba (PR) in 2002, to work in situations of collective conflicts related to access to land and to rural and urban territories. Terra de Direitos is currently involved nationally and internationally in human rights issues and has offices in Santarém (PA), Curitiba (PR) and Brasília (DF).

Areas of work

The organization’s actions are developed through four areas of work: Land, Territory and Spatial Justice; Human Rights Policy and Culture; Biodiversity and Food Sovereignty; and Democratization of Justice.

Action strategy

Terra de Direitos uses public interest law as an action strategy. As such, it develops capacity building as well as working on strategic litigation and advocacy.

With regard to public interest law, the organization works with collective and community demands, in partnership with social movements, recognizing them as active subjects of social processes and fights for rights.

It prepares legal opinions, studies and reports to inform analyses of public policies, legislation and other strategies.

It undertakes strategic litigation in human rights, with the aim of building theses and jurisprudence capable of benefitting collective struggles for rights in Brazil.

It takes part in spaces of civil society articulation, both national and international, in addition to promoting actions aimed at human rights capacity building, advocacy and accountability.

What we defend

Terra de Direitos believes in popular sovereignty and supports the collective struggles of social movements, peoples and communities for the recognition and guarantee of rights.

It understands that democracy and social justice are fundamental for building a free, fair and fraternal society, especially in Brazil – a land of many peoples, cultures and identities.

It is convinced that it is only through the interdependence and intersectionality of human rights that progress can be made both in recognizing rights and redistributing access to them.

It believes that democratization of access to land, whether urban or rural, is paramount for ensuring the dignified reproduction of life, given that land is the source of our subsistence, our shelter and based on which we form our individual and collective identities.

It fights for the building of territories free from exploitation and which have collective social practices both in rural areas and in cities, based on the principles and tools of public interest law.

It works for full access to justice, demanding a legal system that reflects the diversity and plurality of Brazilian society.