Hello! My name is Patricia Bitar and I am an intern for the Human Rights Watch Student Task Force (STF). Launched
in 1999, STF is fundamentally about students advocating for children’s rights. It is a youth leadership-training program that brings together high school students from all over Los Angeles and empowers them to advocate for human rights issues that concern the rights of children.
The STF teachers work in partnership with us as STF interns to mentor students in leadership skills and activism, enabling them to become effective voices for change and social justice within their communities.
We are currently working with 13 high schools all over L.A. to promote this year’s campaign: the Right to Education. As we educate our students about human rights, we are partnering with i-ACT Directors Gabriel Stauring and Katie J Scott and Darfuri refugees to create two Mobile Libraries for refugee students at two camps along the Chad’s boarder with Sudan. STF chapters will create educational materials and fundraise almost $3000 to create the Mobile Libraries which will consist of E-books, tables, mats, dictionaries, chairs, a donkey, and a librarian. The libraries will travel between schools in the camps on two donkeys.
Along with raising money, the STF members will research appropriate resources and materials and will be in contact with refugee students as they explore what the Right to Education means and what the reality is for other youth around the world where education is a matter of life and death.
As a student in International Relations at the University of California San Diego, I feel privileged to be working with HRW and I-Act, an outstanding team of hard-working, inspiring, and intelligent people! I am very excited to see what the New Year brings as we raise awareness and partnerships between L.A. School districts and Darfuri Refugees!
Photos from the HRW Student Task Force September Leadership Conference: