Youth for Human Rights International Year 2013 in Review

1 January 2014

Haitian Relief Efforts Photo Exhibition

Youth for Human Rights International and Agencia EFE organized a photo exhibition of the relief efforts in Haiti in the aftermath of the earthquake that struck the Caribbean island in 2010. Mr. Enzo di Taranto, former Coordinator of the United Nations Action 2 Human Rights Global Programme inaugurated the photo exhibition. The exhibition featured leading celebrities and several United Nations Goodwill Ambassadors, including Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, John Travolta, Kelly Preston, Sean Penn, Lionel Messi and Shakira. These are but a few of the long list of celebrities who rallied together in support of the Haiti 2010 relief efforts. Representatives from several embassies attended the exhibition including the Embassy of Haiti in Belgium.

World Education Tour

The 10th YHRI World Educational Tour 2013 traveled 45,244 miles around the globe to countries including India, Jamaica, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan and the USA. This was an historic year launching our first regional summits.

India - The 3-day YHRI South Asia Regional Summit in India included youth, educators, religious leaders and NGOs. Some traveled for days by train from Bangladesh and Nepal. Others spent days on the bus while others flew in from the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Sri Lanka, UK and the USA. Celebrities Sheena Chohan and Harish Moyal welcomed participants.

Republic of China (Taiwan) - President Ma Ying-jeou officially welcomed the YHRI international delegation to the 3-day Asia Youth for Human Rights Summit 2013, with representatives from Taiwan as well as countries including Australia, India, Japan, Mexico, Nepal, Sri Lanka, UK and the USA.

South Africa - King Thomas Edgar Brown welcomed the YHRI team to the National Khoisan Kingdom Cultural Event in Cape Town, South Africa. In Johannesburg, King Molefe II, traditional king of the Batlokwa Nation, welcomed the international delegation to the 3-day Africa Human Rights Summit 2013, including participants from countries such as Botswana, Congo and Nigeria. South African youth raised voices and spirits with the national anthem, "Nkosi Sikelel' iAfrika" ("God Bless Africa" in Xhosa).

Mayors Honor Youth for Human Rights Day

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of Los Angeles honored Youth for Human Rights Day for the 10th consecutive year. Mayors and City Council Members issued proclamations urging their constituents to learn about the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Proclamations and recognitions acknowledging Youth for Human Rights Day were received from:

-Governor Martin O'Malley of the State of Maryland
-Governor Jay Inslee of the State of Washington
-Senator Dianne Feinstein of California
-Congresswoman Maxine Waters of Los Angeles
-Congressman Mike Honda of San Jose
-Congresswoman Janice Hahn of Compton
-Congresswoman Linda Sánchez of Los Angeles
-Congressman Henry Waxman of Santa Monica
-Congresswoman Karen Bass of Los Angeles
-Congresswoman Doris Matsui of Sacramento
-Senator Curren Price of Los Angeles
-Senator Carol Liu of Glendale
-Assemblyman Steven Bradford of Inglewood
-Assemblyman Mike Gatto of Burbank
-Assemblyman Chris Holden of Pasadena
-Assemblyman Isadore Hall of Los Angeles
-Mayor Vincent C. Gray of the District of Columbia
-Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of the City of Los Angeles
-Mayor James T. Butts of the City of Inglewood
-Mayor Annise D. Parker of the City of Houston
-Mayor Frank Quintero of the City of Glendale
-Mayor Dave Golonski of the City of Burbank
-Mayor Bob Buckhorn of the City of Tampa
-Mayor Steven T. Placido of the City of Alhambra
-Mayor Larry R. Nelson of the City of Artesia
-Los Angeles City Council member Bernard Parks
-Los Angeles City Council member Jan Perry

Mayor Luciano Gavin of Grantorto, Italy, proclaimed Youth for Human Rights Day for his constituents during a memorial service on November 10th emphasizing the importance of Human Rights Education as a cornerstone for Peace.

Governor Arturo Nunez Jimenez of Tabasco, Mexico, officially announced his commitment to human rights education for both high school and university students during an event held at the University Juarez of Tabasco in October. Congresswoman Nelly Vargas and other dignitaries signed the collaboration with Youth for Human Rights International. In December at the Juarez Theatre, Governor of Oaxaca, Gabino Cue, announced his support for Human Rights Education and the event culminated in exceptional youth performances by the Esperanza Azteca National Orchestra.