Edmund Rice Centre Youth Group Perth

After learning about the Every Human Has Rights campaign and the commitments to stand up for human rights made by members of The Elders and so many others, a group of refugee/migrant and indigenous youth from the northern suburbs of Perth Australia decided to sign the ‘Every Human Has Rights’ pledge and take some first steps toward bigger commitments of their own.

Five young leaders from the Edmund Rice Centre Youth Leadership Group helped organize and host an event to share the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with their community; and each member of the group brought their personal connection to the cause.

Atot Amoly and his twin brother were part of the effort:

“My brother and I came to Australia in 2005 from Egypt after fleeing Sudan, a country where human rights abuses are very common,” Atot said. “The war was getting closer, so my father made the decision for us all to leave. It was very confusing and leaving friends behind was really hard.”

Ezra Godfrey, who also fled Sudan via Egypt before arriving in Australia, said it was experiences like this that made him passionate about human rights.

The Perth event, which took place during Australia’s National Refugee Week, attracted 140 people from the surrounding community and collected 116 pledges. The young leaders gave talks throughout the day, sharing what they learned about the Universal Declaration and some of the human rights leaders (like members of The Elders) that inspired them. In the spirit of the day, the community was also encouraged to bring plates of food from their culture for others to try.

The group hopes to hold bigger events in the coming months, and encourage others around Australia to organize similar efforts to connect with their communities and talk about human rights. You can learn more about the Edmund Rice Centre Youth Leadership Group’s efforts by visiting their website or sending them an email at ercyouthleaders@gmail.com.

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