Monday, October 04, 2004

Taking Action: Human Rights

Novel laureate Jody Williams, whose International Campaign to Ban Landmines (ICBL) prompted the world's governments to sign an antipersonnel landmine ban at Ottawa in December 1997, demonstrated the value of the internet as a tool for activists. From time to time, I will use this space to highlight some opportunities for individual activism in international politics. The focus today is on human rights.
  • Amnesty International offers many opportunities to take action individually or as part of a group. The on-line Action Center provides a constantly changing menu of issues, including at present the outsourcing of torture--an issue I discussed here.
  • The International Justice Mission is a Christian organization that seeks to address injustice through casework and education. IJM offers ways to get involved here.
  • Human Rights Watch lists ways to get involved on behalf of human rights here.
  • The web site for Human Rights First (formerly the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights) includes analysis of issues and opportunities to take action.
  • There are things you can do about the situation in Darfur. This page lists ten ideas.
  • The Campaign to End Genocide maintains an advocacy page here.
  • Finally (in honor of Pepperdine alumna Jane Kembabazi, who introduced me to the organization), take a look at the Uganda Children's Charity Foundation (UCCF) and think about contributing to the Children's Wish List.

If you want to get the most out of your efforts (or your group's efforts), you might want to look at the guide to advocacy provided by the Institute for Global Communications (IGC), a network of activist networks. The guide is located here.

So what are you waiting for? As Gandhi put it, "You must be the change you wish to see in the world."