Building peace in the minds of men and women

Human Rights Day

9 December

Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December – the day on which the United Nations General Assembly adopted, in 1948, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights empowers us all. The principles enshrined in the Declaration are as relevant today as they were in 1948. We need to stand up for our own rights and those of others. We can take action in our own daily lives, to uphold the rights that protect us all and thereby promote the kinship of all human beings.

In December 1948, UNESCO was the first United Nations agency to place the Universal Declaration at the heart of all its action, to promote it across the world through education and the media.

Human rights gain new meaning when they become a reality in the daily life of every single person in the world. Bringing human rights home is at the core of UNESCO’s mission in all its fields of competence – education, science, culture and communication. In the context of the commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), UNESCO brings to the fore the centrality of human rights protection in the history and the mandate of the Organization.   

#StandUp4HumanRights #ItStartsWithMe

MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL

"Nelson Mandela, a leading advocate of the “common ideal” defined by the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, stated that “to deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity.” As we celebrate Human Rights Day, these words resonate more strongly at this difficult time for the international community."

— Audrey Azoulay, Director General of UNESCO

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Join UNESCO’s #RightToEducation campaign


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Education is a fundamental human right of every woman, man and child. Yet this right is still not a reality for millions and is violated every single day. This is unacceptable!    

Join UNESCO’s #RightToEducation campaign and help spread the messages about this key human right with the power to transform lives around the world!