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Education Program

"Human Rights Education is a lifelong process of teaching and learning that helps individuals develop the knowledge, skills, and values to fully exercise and protect the human rights of themselves and others; to fulfill their responsibilities in the context of internationally agreed upon human rights principles; and to achieve justice and peace in our world."
Definition by HRE USA network, www.hreusa.net, (2012)

The Education Program:

1. Provides high quality human rights teaching and training
2. Produces and disseminates publications, curricula, and online materials on human rights
3. Supports community engagement, action, and collaboration to promote and protect human rights

Teaching and Training

The Program focuses on teaching, training, and curriculum design integrating human rights and participatory human rights education methods. As a national clearinghouse on human rights education, the Program shares expertise and resources with local, national, and international partners interested in integrating human rights. In addition, the Program advises current and future students on academic and professional opportunities in human rights.

Over the years, our Program staff designed and field-tested a variety of teaching and training models for university-based and community audiences. Our teaching and training component includes online and face-to-face courses, teacher trainings, professional development workshops, summer institutes, and community education programs.

Our audiences include legal professionals, educators, students, human rights advocates, human rights commissioners, and the general public.

In the past, we partnered with a variety of University programs to integrate human rights and human rights education concepts into different course offerings on Genocide and Human Rights, Human Rights and Art, Social Studies Methods, and many others.

Our current University of Minnesota courses include:
Humphrey Law Course: Human Rights, Leadership, and the Rule of Law
Integrating Human Rights into Organizational Leadership
International Human Rights
International Women's Rights

The program works closely with International Humphrey Fellows in Law and Human Rights and Human Rights Fellows and scholars to use their knowledge and expertise to enhance human rights learning for our various audiences.

In addition, we frequently collaborate with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, League of Human Rights Commissions, City of Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights in offering training programs and activities for legal professionals, activists, and the general public.

Publications, Curricula, and Online Materials

Under International Human Rights Law, education is both a fundamental human right and a responsibility. The Preamble of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) exhorts "every individual and every organ of society" to "strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms." To this end, the Program works with a variety of partner organizations, individual authors, and educators to produce human rights education curricula and resources.

Human Rights Passports
The Human Rights Center produces passport-sized publications of major international human rights treaties and documents, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Convention on the Rights of the Child, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and other documents. These publications are used in training and outreach events to raise awareness about and promote interest and support for international human rights law. The Program distributes more than 15,000 passports annually.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

(Available in packets of 10, 25, or 50)

Universal Declaration of Human Rights in English and French

Universal Declaration of Human Rights in English and French

(Available in packets of 10, 20, or 50)

Convention on the Rights of the Child

Convention on the Rights of the Child

(Available in a packet of 50)

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

(Available in packets of 10, 25, or 50)


Human Rights Education Series
Human Rights Education Series is a growing collection of hands-on human rights manuals on emerging human rights issues and international human rights treaties. The series starts off with the foundational volume which outlines the concept of international human rights and proceeds to add topic books on other human rights issues from religion and belief to the rights of persons with disabilities.

Online Human Rights and Peace Store
The Online Human Rights and Peace Store provides easy access to Human Rights and Peace Education books, curricula, human rights passports, posters, training guides, multimedia materials, gifts, bookmarks, kindness currency, and other resources. The Store has distributed more than one million Human Rights Education resources on human rights, conflict resolution, and peace education. Proceeds from the store allow us to offer free human rights resources and consultations on integrating human rights into school and university curricula and community trainings.

This is My Home: pre-K-12 Human Rights Education Initiative and Curriculum Model
This is My Home is a statewide, scoped and sequenced, pre-K-12 Human Rights Education curriculum and training model. The site currently serves more than 25,000 online users monthly, and serves as a mobile center for sharing training and teaching resources. One of these resources, Taking Your Human Rights Temperature Questionnaire, has been translated into different languages and adapted for various publications and research studies globally.

Close the Gap on Race, Class, and Place Disparities
This five-part Close the Gap Documentary Series on Race, Class, and Place Disparities was created by the Twin Cities Public television (tpt). The Program designed and disseminated the companion Educator and Community Guides to foster dialogue on ways to recognize and eliminate these disparities in our schools and communities.

The Educator Guide provides curriculum resources for engaging youth in grades 8-12. The Community Guide offers key discussion activities for community leaders, human rights commissioners, and other interested individuals. These resources have been integrated into a variety of workshops and community events hosted by the Human Rights Center.

Community Engagement, Action, and Collaboration

The Program creates and responds to opportunities for collaboration that lead to effective human rights training and campaigns based on community needs. The Program offers a convening place for networking, capacity-building, and action for local, national, international legal professionals, educators, human rights commissioners, advocates, and the general public. Our growing social media presence on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Blog sites enhances our outreach efforts to raise awareness about human rights developments and current events.

The Program partners with local and national organizations to offer high quality, hands-on workshops, seminars and events, on current issues, including Human Rights and Anti-Trafficking, Indigenous Rights, Humanitarian Law, and the Nuremberg Trial.

Nationally, the Program was instrumental in launching the National Network for Human Rights Educators (HRE USA) in collaboration with over 20 national organizations to integrate concepts of international human rights and humanitarian law into school and university curricula in the United States. Locally, the program has built a network of over 3,000 educators and community members who continue to benefit from and contribute to our efforts.

Highlights of past collaborative initiatives:
Partners in Closing the Gap
Youth Against Race, Class, and Place Disparities
United Front for Children: Global Efforts to Combat Sexual Trafficking of Children in Travel and Tourism (2006)
Paths to Sustainable Peace (2005)
Global Human Rights Education Workshops (2001-2007)

Education Program

The Human Rights Center, Twin Cities Public Television, and U.S. Representative Keith Ellison (’90) honored Youth Against Disparities Video Contest winners on February 4, 2011. From left to right: Daniel Bergin (producer, TPT), Natela Jordan (Education Program Director), Congressman Keith Ellison, Taehohn Lee (former Human Rights Education Program assistant), and Molly Nemer (Video Contest intern).