Using Human Rights-based Approaches to Support the Engagement and Empowerment of Young People

By Ann Taket.

Published by The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social and Community Studies

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Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper explores questions about the value of human rights-based approaches in supporting the engagement and empowerment of young people. It will examine how rights-based approaches allow education about human rights to take on the characteristics of transformative learning, with consequences for increased possibilities of engagement of young people in positive social action both inside and outside the school setting. Key characteristics of rights-based approaches are introduced and their connection to skills supporting empowerment examined. Case studies of rights-based approaches from around the globe drawn from a wide spectrum of countries (including both north and south) are used to illustrate both positive effects and explore challenges and limitations. The work discussed in this paper sits at the intersection of education, public health and health promotion, and is underpinned by values of social justice, equity and participation.

Keywords: Human Rights, Rights-based Approaches, Engagement, Empowerment, Citizenship, Resilience

The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social and Community Studies, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp.35-46. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 880.973KB).

Prof. Ann Taket

Chair Health and Social Exclusion and Director Centre for Health through Action on Social Exclusion, School of Health and Social Development, Deakin University, Burwood, Victoria, Australia

Ann Taket holds a chair in Health and Social Exclusion within the School of Health and Social Development, and is Director of the Centre for Health through Action on Social Exclusion (CHASE) at Deakin University, Australia. Professor Taket has over thirty years experience in public health related research, with particular interests in research directed at understanding the complex interactions between social exclusion and health, in the design and evaluation of interventions to reduce health inequalities, the use of action research, participatory methods, and experiental learning, and prevention and intervention in violence and abuse. She is particularly interested in exploring the value of human rights based approaches as a basis for policy and practice.