80-Day, 42,000-mile Human Rights World Tour focuses on ending abuses of children and youth

May 17, 2010 at 7:36 pm (Church of Scientology, Human Rights, youth for human rights) (, )

After traveling 42,000 miles in 80 days, the 7th annual Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI) World Tour returned to Los Angeles this week.  Marking the United Nations International Year of Youth, the tour met with leaders in the public and private sector in 13 countries including Mexico, Guatemala, Brazil, South Africa, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Japan, to plan and implement action to eradicate human rights abuse against children and youth.

Although the Universal Declaration of Human Rights includes freedom from want and prohibits child labor and slavery, an estimated million children are pressed into sexual trafficking, 300,000 are forced into armed combat and 15 million die of hunger each year.

“Our human rights education materials take the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and with simple language and videos make it possible for anyone to teach or learn the 30 basic rights enshrined in that document,” said Dr. Mary Shuttleworth, Founder and President of Youth for Human Rights International.  “These materials not only help youth and children understand and defend their own rights and those of their peers, they make human rights real to people of all ages.  Simply by watching the YHRI DVDs and reading our booklets, many have been inspired to work together to do something effective about the social ills that perpetuate human rights abuse.”

Shuttleworth and her team met and formed partnerships with representatives of national and state human rights commissions, community, business and religious leaders and educators in 13 countries this year, providing them the YHRI human rights education materials for use in their own campaigns.  They held seminars and classes in 15 universities and 21 high schools and elementary schools to reach youth directly with their message.

Shuttleworth has drawn inspiration from Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard who wrote, “Human rights must be made a fact, not an idealistic dream.”  With the new partnerships forged on this year’s tour and youth in 329 groups in 105 nations carrying out this education initiative, YHRI is focused on empowering youth and bringing about tangible change in the human rights climate.

For more information on Youth for Human Rights, visit the website.

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