This winter I went with the Amnesty Club to the United Nations to participate in a student conference on human rights. Many friends students made presentations about potential human rights initiatives at the conference. Students from many schools and clubs including Friends’ Amnesty members, played leadership roles in organizing the presentations for the initiatives and the direction of the conversations. Throughout the conference adults from Amnesty, the United Nations and other prestigious organizations spoke to us about what they do and how they do it.
Although attending and facilitating the Student Conference on Human Rights may not have looked like traditional community service, it fostered a sense of community among students looking to help others. We met students from as far away as Mexico who care about human rights as strongly as Amnesty club does. The interactions we had, both formal and casual, were inspiring and encouraging. Learning about how to organize behind an issue has helped me as I continue to try to fundraise and raise awareness about human rights issues, in Amnesty and independently. My favorite thing about the conference was seeing the thoughtful presentations of my peers from all grades. When we returned to school I felt pride in my fellow members in a new way.