Supporting young human rights defenders

When Mariam was faced with the overwhelming number of conflicts she saw going on the world, she didn’t know what to do at first. But thanks to compassionate people like you, the Grade 12 student learned how she could make a difference.

Mariam was one of twenty-three Manitoba students who presented their projects on human rights issues at the Museum last Friday during the Be an Upstander showcase.

To take part, students must go beyond researching their topic and presenting their findings: they must demonstrate the tangible steps they have taken to make a positive impact. The results range from artwork, performances, videos, board games, video games and more.

For Mariam’s project, she decided to tackle the issue she cares about by creating an exercise for elementary school kids to learn about peace and practice peaceful conflict resolution.

After all, how can humanity learn to solve large and complex issues peacefully if we don’t learn those skills to solve smaller and simple conflicts as kids?

This approach is based on the Be an Upstander teacher resource, which is used in classrooms across Canada to help students transform their knowledge about an issue into action to create change – to go from “bystanders” to “upstanders”.

A similar showcase of student projects was held in Edmonton in April.

Thank you for your generosity in supporting CMHR programs like the Be an Upstander program! Your support means students like Mariam are equipped to act on human rights issues.