As part of its nationwide human rights education in schools programme, Beakanyang recently reached out to three schools in the provinces.
Armitage Senior Secondary School in Central River Region, Nyakoi Upper Basic and Senior Secondary School and Nasir Senior Secondary School in Upper River Region were the latest schools in the country to benefit from the human rights programme targeting ten schools in the country.
In his launching statement at Armitage on Monday, CRR governor Sulayman Barry applauded Beakanyang and its partners for institutionalizing its human rights education programme in schools.
According to him, by teaching students at an early age about human rights would prepare them to become more responsible citizens.
He urged club members to take the club serious while admonishing teachers to work towards the success of the program in the school.
Governor Barry also reaffirmed government’s commitment in promoting human rights in the country.
Delivering the keynote address, Nfamara Jawneh, Executive Director of Beakanyang, said the programme formed part of a six-month pilot project being implemented by his organization.
According to him, the objective of the project is to promote human rights education in schools and to build a culture of human rights in The Gambia.
“It also seeks to popularize the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Gambian Schools, alleviate the culture of fear in New Gambia and promote good governance and political pluralism,” he noted.
He added: “ Ten schools across the country including rural schools like yours are benefiting from this programme but our wish is to see it cover every upper and senior school in the country by 2020”.
The rights activist added that they also wanted to inspire and nurture a cohort of young human rights defenders and advocates in Gambia as well as to promote social cohesion, peace and unity in New Gambia.
He added that the programme is being supported by the US Embassy and Youth for Human Rights USA to complement the efforts of his organisation in promoting human rights education in schools.
Jawneh who also doubles as Youth for Human Rights Country Coordinator recalled that during the past 22 years Gambians have witnessed gross human rights violations such as arbitrary arrest and detention, media censorship, disappearances, tortured.
He however cautioned that the country should never allow such human rights violations to happen again thus encouraging students to rise up for their rights.
Jawneh stressed that human rights are standards that allow all people to live with dignity, freedom, equality, justice, and peace.
Meanwhile, about 500 copies of human rights booklets, posters and CDs were donated to students in the three rural schools.
The vice principals of Nasir, Nyakoi and Armitage Senior Secondary Schools delivered the welcoming remark in their respective schools.
Meanwhile, cultural troop from Wuli Barrow Kunda who were also trained by the organisation to composed songs and make drama presentations on human rights, made spectacular performances at the activities while club members also did drama on human rights.