Marsh Award for Human Rights Activism

This Award is run with Amnesty International UK to support activist groups in funding a proposal that will grow activism and awareness of human rights in their communities. Projects are judged according to how well they reach new and diverse audiences; how they positively impact people’s understanding of human rights; and a demonstration of creativity and innovation. This is the first year that the Awards have been run in this format, having previously recognised one of the organisation’s groups for their outstanding work in campaigning, awareness-raising, fundraising or education.

Amnesty International UK has over 280 local groups in the UK which devote their time, energy and skills to campaigns, raising funds and representing Amnesty in their local communities. This Award is a way of paying tribute to these efforts.

Amnesty International UK works to protect men, women and children wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

The 2017 winners are Clyst Vale Amnesty Group, Royal Holloway University Amnesty Group and Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch Amnesty Group

Youth Group - Clyst Vale Amnesty Group

The Amnesty Group at the Clyst Vale Community College in Devon won this Award for their proposal to work more closely in collaboration with local primary schools to promote their human rights work. They would like to invite older children from the schools to spend the day with the group, where they would be taught about the importance of human rights in creative and engaging ways. They will use the Award to organise a mural at the front of the college which will feature artwork from the children who attend the workshops. The Group hope that these activities will encourage the children to become human rights ambassadors for their schools and run assemblies with their teachers to encourage as many pupils as possible to learn about human rights.

Student Group - Royal Holloway University Amnesty Group

The Amnesty International Group at Royal Holloway University won this Award for their proposal to run an event named ‘Picnic in a Box’ to raise awareness of human rights, and also Amnesty’s ‘I Welcome’ Refugees campaign, amongst students at the University who may not usually engage with Amnesty International’s work. The event would be held on the main campus, with live music, games and a stall selling food and refreshments to the students. There would be lots of promotional material for Amnesty International featured around the event as well as in the boxes being sold to the students. The group hope that the event will appeal to students who have just finished their exams and educate a large number of people about the refugee crisis and the work of Amnesty International in an informal way.

Local Group - Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch Amnesty Group

The local Amnesty International Group for Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch won this Award for their innovative proposal to engage the general public to raise awareness of human rights using ‘selfie-frames’. The group run stalls at a number of events and festivals throughout the year and came up with this proposal since they have found that a lack of resources makes it difficult to encourage the public to engage. The ‘selfie-frames’ will carry a message relating to the work of Amnesty International (e.g. ‘Love is a human right’) and the public will be encouraged to have their photo taken holding the frame which can then be shared on social media. It is hoped that the frames become a marketing tool for Amnesty International as it can be reciprocated across the organisation as a whole and be used for a number of campaigns.

Pictured: This year's winners receiving their Awards from Peter Titley (MCT Ambassador) and Katherine Odukoya (Amnesty International) at the 2017 presentation (Credit: Marie-Anne Ventoura, Amnesty International)


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