The vision and passion of youth from around the world to blog about human rights from an intercultural standpoint is inspirational. They are motivated to talk not only about youth policy, but also numerous issues affecting the human rights of all people around the world. Providing young people with the space to blog and see their work as part of a global conversation is empowering in and of itself.
The vision and passion of youth from around the world to blog about human rights from an intercultural standpoint is undeniable and inspirational. They are motivated to talk not only about youth policy, but also numerous issues affecting the human rights of all people around the world.
During the past six months of blogging on this page, and on GYC’s sister page at gycvillage.org, participants from over fifteen nationalities have illustrated this.
Here are a couple of observations/comments about what you will be reading below in this blog roll and on gycvillage.org (taking into account some of the observations from other posts on youthpolicy.org as well), and adding some new voices that are just coming in now:
Several months after her program, Eriel, a GYC participant who spent two weeks in NYC with Kanal Khiev (author of “Youth can see the sunrise too!“), had this to report about her experience, and how Kanal and his work is affecting her work in rural Tennessee for Americorps:
From my time with Kanal, I learned that people from a past as gruesome as the Khmer Rouge are still vibrant, intelligent, and powerful people. [Now] I can’t look at anyone as victims, even if they’ve been through a tough time, but instead I look at them as individuals who have a story to tell that may be a difficult story to tell.”
What I, Jesse, draw from this: Youth are just as easily swayed by the media of the world, by the dominant cultures, and they are not going to save the world simply by being young. They need to interact cross culturally in order to stimulate internal questioning and changes.
Also, providing young people with the space to blog and see their work as part of a global conversation is empowering in and of itself, whether the pieces are read or just sit on the page:
Case in Point: Lambert (one of the authors of Two Views on Education for Marginalized Groups) capitalized on the ideas he explored in the blog (much of which came from discussions with GYC staff about the blog) to catapult himself, and others in the delegation, headstrong into action on alternatives to education. Following the program, Lambert tirelessly and voluntarily worked to advance numerous projects including Computer and English training for the Imbereheza Cooperative in Rwanda and the establishment of a new youth program called “Bright Future Generation,” both working across cultures for shared ideas and resources.
Case in Point: After a few months of cross cultural interactions, including blogging, Nina Vershuta (author of Suffrage: Right or Privilege? at youthpolicy and The New Attraction: 9/11Memorial at gycvillage.org) commented: I reflect on this program every day, from the second I turn on the morning news or in my World Religions class discussing Buddhism in Burma.
Related to the wider issues addressed on youthpolicy.org, from what I have seen, the ability of youth to effectively blog is only limited by the time that they have available to engage. Young people are busy trying to find jobs in a difficult economic climate and they are overwhelmed with studies as they try to get degrees that will hopefully allow them to continue to do human rights work and live life to its fullest.
Lastly, for anyone who is inspired to do Intercultural Blogging for Human Rights: I wanted to share with you our Guide to Cross Cultural Blogging for Human Rights.The guide was produced along-side this project to establish this intercultural blogging page. The guide is (for now) definitely no frills, but packed with ideas about the particularities of blogging for human rights and from a cross cultural standpoint. We welcome feedback from all!