A recent workshop gathered civil society representatives from around the world to share their experiences conducting public legal education on human rights issues. The three-day workshop, held in early November, was designed to increase the capacity of participating civil society organizations (CSOs) to lead such programs and to create a resource that can be used to support and strengthen civic education activities globally. The Amman, Jordan, event, co-hosted by the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) and the Arab Council for Judicial Legal Studies (ACJLS), was funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development.
CSO representatives from Algeria, China, Jordan, Kuwait, Nepal, Palestine and Zimbabwe participated in the event, which offered both practical skills training and opportunities to learn more about international human rights education initiatives. Mabel McKinney-Browning, director of the ABA Division for Public Education, and Frank Elbers, director of programs at Human Rights Education Associates, guided participants through group exercises and brainstorming sessions tailored to increase understanding of educational methodologies and of human rights issues.
During the training, each CSO presented a case study of its own public education efforts, outlining the human rights topic, the process of audience selection and the delivery method. The case study activity celebrated successes, but also emphasized identifying obstacles and how they were overcome.
ABA ROLI and ACJLS, with guidance from the experts and inputs from the CSO representatives, developed a human rights toolkit. The resource contains substantive human rights material and a teaching methodology, along with lessons learned and best practices provided by the participants. The toolkit was designed for global use by CSOs engaging in public legal education and will be made available worldwide.
To lean more about our work in the Middle East and with Civil Society, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at .