West Papua Human Rights Center

The West Papua Human Rights Center (WPHRC) was established in 2019, by a group of American-Melanesia Academics and human rights activists in Washington, D. C, and Northern Virginia to support the efforts of the West Papuan Mission to the United States Government (USG) and the United Nations and to monitor the ongoing crisis in West Papua, and the Human Rights of its indigenous people.

Our story

The Executive Director of West Papua Human Rights Center, Mr. Herman Wainggai, came to the United States of America after being forced to flee his home village in West Papua due to his imprisonment and torture by the Indonesian Government. With the help of a small group of activists and academics he established The West Papua Human Rights Center in 2019 to share his story and the struggle of his people with the the world. 

West Papua Human Rights Center is a registered 501(c)3 organization. 

Read more of our Director’s Story >

Our Programs and Focus Areas

Training Programs for Activists and Journalists

WPHRC promotes the essential democratic process of peaceful activism. Young activists must learn how to approach or respond to government authorities and how to protest without violating the laws and spending decades behind bars in dangerous Indonesian prisons. The community activists and leaders we have trained are now active in West Papua in promoting our mission through ‘Nonviolent resistance’ while calling for public dialogue about the issues of West Papua. 

Understanding the legal arguments of West Papuan independence is important. The legal arguments for West Papuan self-determination were laid out by Dr. Thom Wainggai in his argument against the Indonesian courts during his trial.

Media training and documentaries are important in our work. News gathering, interviews and documentaries are a crucial to exposing the ongoing human rights abuses in West Papua. 

Public Awareness about Human Rights Abuses in West Papua

The story of West Papua is unique and intriguing, and we want to share it with you and your friends wherever you are in this world. West Papua Human Rights Center encourages Americans to learn about West Papua via our social media campaigns and public speaking engagements. 

Lifting the Voices of Female Activists in West Papua

West Papua Human Rights Center proudly promotes the work of female activists in West Papua and is a partner of the West Papua Women’s Solidarity Group. Our programs include establishing women’s healthcare clinics and advocating for the rights and well-being of West Papuan women. 

Protecting the Environment and Restoration of Natural Areas

The land and natural resources of West Papua have been ravaged by the mining, logging and palm oil industries. West Papua Human Rights Center is working to conduct academic studies that evaluate the irreversible damage to the environment and advocate against further damage and return of land to the indigenous people. 

Advancing Access to Healthcare for Undeserved Areas in Papua and West Papua

West Papua Human Rights Center is working to supplement the healthcare system in West Papua to ensure that people have access to doctors in every village. 

Youth Education Programs

Our education training program is essential. West Papuan children need to access to better education and educational materials about their own culture and history. We hope to enhance this education program in the near future.

Cultural Exchange

It is important to learn from others and understand their cultures. One of our priorities is to promote our culture through this website and through cultural training programs which will be provided in the future.