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Human Rights: There's A Change Gonna Come!


I had the privilege of completing a six-month Human Rights training programme with making rights real, what a heart-warming, memorable and life-changing experience it truly was throughout this blog I am going to be taking through the journey with me, hope you enjoy it 😊

The programme has so much to offer not only did we learn so much about what are Human Rights, who have Human Rights and who is responsible for our Human Rights. But the values and principles of Human Rights. Sounds boring right? But honestly, it’s the complete opposite, stick with me….

We also learned how Human Rights are protected domestically and internationally, What Human Rights look like in Scotland's context. What Human Rights are protected in Scotland Law and what aren’t (one of the most shocking things we learned!) the exciting part about what is coming in Scotland is the big Human Rights train, it is on its way, it's exciting come aboard you won’t regret it!

Lastly, the last piece that took a bit to get the head around was who were right holders, duty bearers, and the role of the state to protect, respect and fulfil Human Rights.

What we also got to do at training, which makes this different from most training and may I add more enjoyable was all the group work activities, discussions and braining storming we have done as a team.

From learning and applying the PANEL approach to FAIR principles to our work. To look at our own professional and personal life and see where Human Rights have been breached and who was accountable for it. Applying everything that we had learned and applying to the work we do, this was the shift for me that’s where the sense of purpose, and understanding aligned. Then ultimately the end goal of training is to create a plan of how we can use a Human Rights based approach in our work.

The group work activities and discussions helped me to grasp a better understanding of Human Rights being able to relate it to real life is what made it click that as having a great teacher!

Why did I get involved in Human Rights you may ask… it was a professional opportunity to start with as I am a board member of the network this training was the next step to growth for us in how we move forward with support and projects for women we provide services for.

But on a personal level, I had very limited knowledge of Human Rights I knew they existed, but was always scared to look into them, it was too big, too complex and felt way above my capabilities.

This programme allowed me to challenge these beliefs and myself, and learn with the support of my sisterhood for a much greater purpose.

I was asked what made this programme memorable, oh man!...where to start…ALL OF IT!!

Yes there is a lot to take in and although I know way more than I ever thought I could, there will always be more to learn 😊

The tasks and activities made us think outside the box, and think about things we may never would have thought of, in a way I don’t think we could have without this programme.

How empowering learning about Human Rights is. How incredibly useful and meaningful it is not just in a professional manner but a personal one also. I know for me it has changed my mindset and perspective.

The bonding we were a close group anyway, but I feel by coming together the way we have kind of reborn us. Despite the challenges most face in the sector we work in and what we faced as a network, there is a spark and passion again it’s refreshing…exciting…feels worthwhile again, and hopeful!!

What is the importance of Human Rights to the work I do I hear you ask…

The work I am involved in and the campaigning I do to fight the social injustice for women, survivors of domestic abuse, Rape and sexual assault warriors. Fighting for better support services, breaking the myths and stigma attached to being a survivor and fighting for a better justice system for survivors to have faith and belief in.

As a survivor myself it is personally important to me to never give up the fight! Knowledge is power, the more I learn the better I can fight.

Human Rights are not just important to the work I do but in everyday life, they are so important.

I never realised their importance till I learned about Human Rights on a daily bases Human Rights are being breached left right and centre. It’s going unnoticed and unchallenged. It’s being allowed to continue because most people don’t understand Human Rights and don’t think they can make a difference.

But you can…WE ALL CAN!!

What is next for the network, we have a 12-month project plan going on right now for women’s safety on public transport.

The network’s determination, passion and drive are at an all-time high, although we know it is a lot of work to complete, applying what we have learned in this programme and in the work we have already achieved, we know this is a huge and significant piece of work for the women we support.

It feels like we are winning

It’s not all doom and gloom

It is positive and achievable

Watch this space!! 😊


Written by Lisa Walsh Member of Glasgow Women's Voluntary Sector Network



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