Social Justice and Human Rights Advocacy Toolkit

Anyone can defend human rights and stand up to injustice. All you need to get started is a belief in the dignity and equality of all human beings, a commitment to justice, and hope that a better world is possible.

This Advocacy Toolkit offers practical ideas for building more inclusive communities, preventing bias, challenging hate, and increasing access to rights and justice. Here we offer you tools and strategies for defending rights in your own communities, and organizing with others for collaborative, human-rights inspired change. 

Let’s get started!

What is human rights advocacy?

Human rights advocacy is any activity that aims to create or implement human rights norms, law, or policy. Effectively using information and shifting power dynamics is at the heart of human rights and social justice change.

Human rights advocacy relies on:

  • Credible research and documentation of patterns of abuse 
  • Skillful messaging
  • Diverse, broad-based alliances and coalitions
  • Careful preparation for strategic action 
  • Focusing pressure on multiple points of leverage
  • Persistent organizing
  • Painstaking effort 
  • Long-term commitment
  • Belief that a better world is possible

Most importantly, human rights advocacy must be human-centered. There is no quick and easy formula and no guarantee of success. The world is witness to abundant examples of human rights violations and yet the world also has witnessed profound human rights change. Human rights advocacy is at the heart of that change.

How Much Time Do You Have?

Find our how you can promote human rights in a few minutes, a few hours or a few days, months or weeks.

Wai Wai Nu
Anas al-Dyab

I am not free. My community is not free. My country is not free.

Wai Wai Nu, Women’s Rights Defender and Youth Advocate
Image credit: Wai Wai Nu Oslo Freedom Forum via Wikimedia Commons

Maybe if my camera fails, the minds and memories of millions of Syrians who have lived through this war and have experienced this Syrian reality will not fail or lie.

Anas al-Dyab, Photographer and Humanitarian Rescuer
Image Credit: White Helmets (Syria Civil Defence)