In celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Institute of Human Rights and Peace Studies (IHRP) hosted a Human Rights Festival at the Mahidol Learning Center (MLC) on November 22, 2023. This event was organized by the students from the two International MA programs: Master of Arts in Human Rights and Democratization (APMA) and Master of Arts in Human Rights (MAHR), with the objective of raising awareness about pressing human rights issues.
The festival drew in hundreds of students and university personnel and featured a diverse array of campaigns, each uniquely designed to shed light on different topics of human rights. Through engaging activities such as quizzes, surveys, music, and social media interaction, the organizers aimed to foster a sense of social responsibility and active participation among attendees.
1. Painful Period, Pricey Pads:
This campaign addressed the often-overlooked issue of the high price of period pads, exploring its impact on accessibility, particularly for people in poverty. The organizers aimed to promote inclusivity and advocate for the specific needs of women, who comprise half of the world’s population.
2. Ending Corporal Punishment:
Highlighting the importance of child rights according to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Article 19), this campaign focused on the eradication of corporal punishment. Through surveys and quizzes, the organizers aimed to emphasize the significance of positive and non-violent methods of discipline for the development of a better future.
3. Wheelchair Access at MU:
This initiative advocated for universal accessibility, emphasizing the inclusive nature of human rights. By showcasing the challenges faced by individuals with disabilities, the campaign aimed to encourage the university towards creating a more accessible environment.
4. Right to Privacy on Social Media:
In the digital age, the right to privacy is a crucial human rights issue. This campaign explored the significance of online privacy, urging participants to reflect on the balance between personal freedom and online security.
5. Campaign Against Gender-based Violence:
Through an Instagram story filter, this campaign sought to raise awareness about gender-based violence using the butterfly effect metaphor. The organizers aimed to create a culture of respect and recognition towards gender specific issues.
6. Affordable On-campus Child Daycare:
Focusing on the challenges faced by student-parents and university staff, this campaign advocated for affordable on-campus childcare facilities. By doing so, it supported the full enjoyment of human rights for both working mothers and children, highlighting a pressing need for the establishment of a comprehensive and secure day-care service within the campus. The organizers hoped to underscore the interconnectedness of human rights issues and emphasize the universality of these rights, whether in the physical or virtual realm. Through this approach, the Human Rights Festival aimed to leave an impact on the consciousness of the attendees, inspiring them to understand more and recognize the signification of human rights.