WORLD Human Rights Day is observed every year on December 10 and it stands as an annual reminder of the historic day when countries came together in acknowledgement of the basic rights that everyone is entitled to as a human. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948 – and it has been celebrated annually as World Human Rights Day ever since.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a landmark document that proclaims “the inalienable rights that every human being has regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinions, national or social0 origin, property, birth or other status.” This year’s World Human Rights Day, is special as it marks the start of a year-long campaign to mark the 75th anniversary of the declaration.
Moreover, the UN has resolved to have a theme which sits at the core of UDHR which is ‘dignity, freedom and justice for all’. As World Human Rights Day is marked globally, let’s have a look 5 Indian non-government organisations (NGOs) that are working for the human rights of people from all sections of society.
Human trafficking is a crime against a person’s right to life and liberty. And it is indeed a violation of human rights. And this is one crime that has been on the rise in the country. The abduction and sale of young children and minor girls has left thousands of families in despair across the country.
Vihaan has been working to provide freedom, dignity and justice to victims of human trafficking. The organisation has a victim-centric, end-to-end approach to rehabilitating and reintegrating survivors of trafficking.
ActionAid is an NGO that has been one of the most active organisations working for social and ecological justice across the world. The NGO, since 1972, has worked relentlessly for the upliftment of backward communities in India. ActionAid Association, the Indian arm of the NGO has its presence across most states of the country. Cutting across geographical boundaries ActionAid has been committed to ensuring the right to a dignified life for marginalised communities. At the core of most of its interventions is the protection of human rights.
The aim of ActionAid is to make India a better place for marginalised communities. From protecting the girl child to sponsoring children’s education or supporting survivors of domestic abuse. Affiliated with the global federation of ActionAid International, it has been working in solidarity with the poor and marginalised communities in 24 states and two union territories of India.
Moved by the horrific tales of domestic violence and physical abuse against women Professor Meenakshi Apte and a noted activist Mrinaltai Gore decided to set up Swadhar in 1983. Since then, the NGO has been working to spread awareness about domestic violence and has since rescued and rehabilitated hundreds of victims.
The NGO provides education and training to countless women so they can be financially independent and can stand up for their rights. Swadhar also provides guidance and counselling to underprivileged women and children to ensure that they can lead a normal life after the trauma they have faced at the hands of abusers.
Kolkata Rista has been fighting for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community with a special focus on the ultra-marginalised transgenders and the Hijra community, for over a decade. The organisation has been fighting against discrimination faced by transgenders and is currently championing the inclusion of the community across all spheres of life such as employment, education, etc.
Kolkata Rista runs a shelter home where it provides a loving home to transgender persons in desperate need of mental and physical health. It also trains people to get gainful employment through various vocational courses. As the number of people seeking help increases, Kolkata Rista is in need of funds to open another shelter home. You can help Kolkata Rista in its efforts by donating here.
Child Rights & You (CRY) is one of the most prominent NGOs working for child rights in India. It has impacted the lives of more than 30 lakh children over the last four decades. Committed to providing every child in India a happy and healthy childhood far from discrimination, abuse, neglect and violence CRY has established its presence across 19 states of the country.
It is also fighting social evils like child marriage. For instance, it has been sensitising communities in villages towards the ill effects of child marriage on a regular basis. CRY has also been making an effort to bring about sustainable change through its work in health and nutrition and education.
Ever since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 75 years ago, human rights have become an important aspect of government action. And World Human Rights Day has helped in recognising the importance of the protection of human life and dignity, especially of vulnerable groups such as persons with disabilities, migrants and others.
Choosing to tread the proverbial road less travelled, Ramon embarked upon a career in journalism and spent over 8 years working for various media organisations. A deeper calling to create a sustainable impact in the lives of the less fortunate compelled him to join the social sector. Ramon is a minimalist at heart and an explorer in spirit.