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Volunteer Opportunities: Yes
The co-founders of the Advocacy Lab met in 2005 through volunteering for the Human Rights Watch Young Advocates in New York. Children’s Rights Advocacy Director Jo Becker had recently returned from Sri Lanka and wanted to raise awareness around the plight of child soldiers and share her findings with students in the New York City area. The volunteers hit the ground running with stats, maps and movies and presented to a class at the Baccalaureate School for Global Education in Queens.
From that first classroom visit, the volunteer group was met with shock and concern from students, as well as immediate demands for more information on how they could help; some responded “how does this affect me” and “why should I care,” resulting in lively debates among peers. The presentation also sparked conversations about addressing social injustices at home.
Inspired by the students’ high level of curiosity and engagement, and eager to continue and grow these conversations, the Advocacy Lab was born.
To empower youth to take action for human rights. Partnering with teachers in New York City high schools, AdLab provides in-class human rights education and advocacy skills training at least once a week over the course of the school year. AdLab’s grassroots program prepares students with the knowledge, tools and confidence to create positive social change in their communities and in the world.