This year is an important milestone for human rights education as it marks the 10th anniversary of the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training (2011). It is also one year since the start of the fourth phase of the World Programme for Human Rights Education, which began during the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 outbreak.
On 10 March, SGI prepared and co-sponsored the oral statement delivered by the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) on behalf of 23 NGOs titled: “COVID-19, Human Rights and Youth.” The statement calls on Member States to concretely address the impact of the pandemic on human rights. Furthermore, it emphasized the right to quality of education especially during a time of crisis.
The video of the oral statement can be viewed via UN Web TV.
On 19 February, Elisa Gazzotti of SGI and chair of the NGO Working Group on Human Rights Education (NGO WG on HREL) participated in a discussion with Dr. Koumbou Boly Barry, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education. The meeting was organized by Ignasi Grau Callizo, General Director of OIDEL, and brought together 18 NGOs of the NGO Platform on the Right to Education.
Dr. Barry stated: “Education starts with cultivating the potential of all individuals—it is more and more important to cultivate art and music education.” Creativity must be liberated, which she pointed out can be achieved by connecting cultural rights and the right to education.