Saturday, January 31, 2009

Youth for Human Rights International - Year 2008 in Review

2008 was a year of unprecedented expansion!

As we were celebrating the 60th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, our messages of human rights in 2008 were reaching people of all walks of life, all continents and the TV stations are now promoting our videos to hundreds of millions around the world.

The purpose of Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI) is to teach youth about human rights, specifically the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), and inspire them to become valuable advocates for tolerance and peace.

Through the tireless efforts of our thousands of dedicated volunteers around the world throughout 2008, human rights education permeated society at a new level:
  • Students in Sierra Leone, Ghana and Liberia participated in intensive human rights education and gained the skills needed to research, document, teach and promote human rights to their peers, communities and leaders.
  • YHRI-Burundi realized that children who do not know their rights are vulnerable and took the message of human rights to schools, religious groups, orphanages and even people who live in the furthest remote areas.
  • YHRI-India, in collaboration with the Safepoint Foundation, taught human rights to millions of people specifically focusing on the person’s right to safe health care by raising awareness about the dangers of re-using syringes.
  • YHRI - Bangladesh got started in 2008 year and is learning how to expand their team.
  • YHRI-Congo continued to develop the plans for their Human Rights Community Center.
  • YHRI-South Africa inspired thousands of youth to learn about their human rights and their responsibilities.
  • Art competitions and celebrity awards celebrations of chapters such as YHRI-UK and YHRI-Australia inspired youth and the results truly depicted their understanding of human rights vividly
  • YHRI-Morocco mailed postcards and painted murals
  • YHRI-Uganda held human rights concerts and workshops
  • Artists and celebrities in Venezuela took the lead and YHRI-Venezuela promoted to audiences in shopping malls, huge concerts and TV reaching hundreds of thousands of fans throughout Venezuela and beyond her borders and took rap to a new horizon as human rights lessons were taught
  • YHRI-Mexico brought artists on board bringing human rights messages into the limelight
  • YHRI-Taiwan literally promoted human rights education on two wheels. Yes, they cycled around the island promoting to dignitaries, leaders, educators as well as people along the way - young and old alike!
  • YHRI-UK was fast as the team raced around the track for human rights promoting the message of human rights locally and nationwide in the media. Rumor has it that they are taking their “Racing 4 Human Rights™” message to an international level next year!
  • In the US, Major League Soccer (MLS) kicked human rights education to a new high level by promoting the YHRI PSAs endorsed by the MLS professional players to thousands, during halftime as well as on national TV.
  • In California, our YHRI youth kicked off a new idea with their “Kick Discrimination™” campaign.
  • YHRI-Denmark kicked off their soccer initiative including players from many countries joining in the fun.
  • Switzerland took human rights education to a new height with their soccer balls depicting the 30 articles of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
  • The list continues with human rights being taught in Fiji and surrounding islands depicting local images in their human rights videos. In honor of the 60th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, YHRI groups in countries around the globe including Holland, Indonesia, Italy, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Russia, Sweden and the USA, our YHRI volunteers spread the message of human rights to hundreds of thousands of youth.
  • The YHRI World Tour 2008 circled the globe to Haiti, Venezuela, Morocco, Nigeria, Kenya, Egypt, Pakistan and Taiwan. The media followed and shared stories of visits with dignitaries, officials, community leaders, schools, youth groups and the local people. New friends were made and collaborations formed to take human rights education to a new level.
  • The YHRI International Human Rights Summit 2008 at the United Nations headquarters in New York was an outstanding success with 27 youth delegates from around the world walking side-by-side to promote human rights for all. Dignitaries, religious and community leaders addressed the delegation...

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Friday Night with Jonathan Ross and... Tom Cruise

and Stephen Fry and Lee Evans and Franz Ferdinand

I am SO looking forward to the recording of the first in the new series of Friday Night with Jonathan Ross this Thurs 22 Jan (for broadcast Fri 23 Jan on BBC1). As blogged about last October on my other blog (UpTone News), I had tickets for the ill-fated show (with guests David Attenborough, Miley Cyrus and Frank Skinner and music from the Killers) that ended up being canceled due to Jonathan Ross's naughty antics. But then we all got issued with new tickets and it just so happens that Tom Cruise, Scientologist Icon himself, is one of the guests. That's so amazing - couldn't have planned it; it just happened that way.

I am also a big fan of the other guests Stephen Fry (absolutely superb in Blackadder) and Lee Evans (Mousehunt is one of my favourite movies), so I am in for one hell of a treat on Thursday - can't wait!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

L. Ron Hubbard’s Fitzroy House in London Launches Website

Site to answer questions about the House located in the centre of Fitzrovia

London: Fitzroy House, the historic house depicting the life and work of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, recently launched its new website.

The House, which has been open since October 2006, has, to date, received guests from almost 50 nations. Visitors have included Ambassadors and businessmen and it has proven an interest to people from all walks of life.

The House comprises four impressive floors, one of which is dedicated to an exhibition of Ron Hubbard's early life from Boy Scout to explorer. It also illustrates his career as one of the top fiction writers in the 1930s and 40s and his later achievements in the humanities. A number of social betterment programs based on the works of Ron Hubbard are also coordinated from the House. The programs include a drug rehabilitation program with a very high success rate, a human rights campaign spanning some 91 nations as well as an educational program which is successfully improving literacy rates in schools around the world.

The website will assist those simply interested in finding out more, as well as enable those visiting the House to schedule their appointments.

“We are pleased to announce that our new website, which was established by popular demand, is now live at It is designed to provide information about Fitzroy House and to answer any questions people may have," explains Sarah Borburg, House Director.

About Fitzroy House
Fitzroy House, located in the centre of Fitzrovia, W1, known for its writers and artists, was built in 1791 imitating the designs of Robert Adam, the famous Georgian architect. Today the House commemorates the life and work of writer and philosopher L. Ron Hubbard who made it his London base in the 1950s. Ron Hubbard wrote many of his best-known works whilst in London. With a number of New York Times Bestsellers and the Guinness Book of World Records Title for most published author to his name, he is one of the most prolific writers of his time. In addition to providing guided tours of the exhibition which covers 4 floors, the House is also a venue for seminars and workshops.

For more information, contact:

Sarah Borburg
House Director
Fitzroy House
37 Fitzroy Street
London, W1T 6DX

0207 255 2422