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International Human Rights 16th Annual Summit in New York

Posted in Community

Published on July 09, 2019 with No Comments

          In Conference Room 4 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, on June 27th and 28th, Youth Delegates and Ambassadors from 40 nations met and networked with NGO representatives, members of civil society, ambassadors and representatives of UN permanent missions, government officials and representatives of non-profits from around the world.

          For Youth for Human Rights Toronto Director, Nicole Crellin, the Summit was a tremendously valuable experience. She added, “Our Canadian delegation included youth delegate, Daphne Ribeiro, and two adult speakers; namely, philanthropist film producer, Sarah Kravetz and Farley Flex, community leader, social activist and partner of several impactful community building initiatives.”

          Attended by guests from 78 nations, the message of the three-day Summit reached far beyond the Conference Room walls, streaming live on UN Web TV.

          The theme of the Summit was the importance of communities working together to resolve human rights abuses through education in the 30 Articles of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

          This year’s Summit was sponsored by the Permanent Mission of El Salvador to the UN, and was co-sponsored by the Permanent Mission of Ghana, the Permanent Mission of The Gambia and the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Moldova. Other co-sponsors included the Human Rights Department of the Church of Scientology International, Karna Positive Trust of Nepal, the International Union of Bilateral Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the National Human Rights Commission of Mexico, the Foundation for International Democracy in Argentina, the African Diaspora Foundation and Art and Culture for Human Rights.

          The right to education was a the main focus of the Summit. It touched on many other human rights issues including the need to eradicate injustice and inequalities wherever they occur. Speakers analyzed issues, provided statistics and examples of abuses in their countries, and presented successful actions in addressing these issues.

Prominent speakers included Ambassador Reuben Armando Escalante Hasbun of El Salvador; Deputy Permanent Representative of Sierra Leone Victoria M. Sulimani; His Excellency Ireneo Omositsion Namboka of Uganda; Dr. Joseph L. Green, Chairman of the 400 Years of African-American History Commission; and Queen Mother Dr. Delois Blakely, Ambassador of Goodwill to Africa and Community Mayor of Harlem.

          The final day, Saturday, June 29, was the Summit’s multicultural celebration, hosted by the Church of Scientology of Harlem Community Center. The day began with a workshop for the delegates on human rights education, resulting in each delegate creating an action plan for applying what they learned at the Summit to make positive change in their communities.

          The afternoon was a multi-cultural celebration with performances and speakers from many nationalities and countries.

          In her closing speech, Dr. Mary Shuttleworth, president of Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI), conveyed her deepest respect for the young men and woman, saying “Your hard work is making all our dreams come true.”

Youth Delegates and Ambassadors then took to the streets for the Summit final activity. Inspired by the Youth for Human Rights International public service announcement for article 29 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Responsibility) they passed out hundreds of copies of Youth for Human Rights booklets and read people their 30 rights. They then gathered in Times Square and collected signatures on a giant 12-foot petition to mandate human rights education in schools.

          Do you know your human rights? Learn them and find out more at https://www.youthforhumanrights.org


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