Feature Stories


Political will and collective action needed in fight against COVID-19
Political will and collective action needed in fight against COVID-19
The critical need for human rights, international cooperation and solidarity to fight the COVID-19 pandemic was the focus of this year’s Social Forum, an annual meeting convened by the Human Rights Council.
18 October 2021
Hope Laing, a Scottish teenager fighting against child poverty and inequality
Hope Laing, a Scottish teenager fighting against child poverty and inequality
“To speak at the UN has been something I've always wanted to do. As I said when I ended my speech, I will make it there. I will be in that room one day.” Hope Laing is a 16-year-old human rights defender. She recently delivered her video statement to the UN Human Rights Council’s Social Forum.
17 November 2020
Building better policies will break the cycles of poverty and inequality
Building better policies will break the cycles of poverty and inequality
Poverty, inequalities and ways to break their cycles were the focus of the recent Human Rights Council Social Forum. The Forum brought together a wide range of people from academic experts to civil society activists and from government officials to people with experience of living in poverty and with inequalities.
16 October 2020
Education has the power to transform lives
Education has the power to transform lives
“As the global refugee crisis deepens, children are often most affected,” said Maya Ghazal, 20-year-old Syrian refugee. “But they are also extraordinarily resilient. They find ways to cope, to progress and if given the opportunity, thrive!” Ghazal was a featured speaker during the 2019 Social Forum in Geneva.
9 October 2019
“Sports and human rights give me hope”
“Sports and human rights give me hope”
“Sport has given me hope because being an athlete gives you courage,” said Rose Lokonyen. Lokonyen was part of the team of refugees who took part in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil. She was speaking at the recent Social Forum on Sports, the Olympic ideal and human rights.
11 October 2018
Experts: Stereotypes and fear continue to block access to health care for some
Experts: Stereotypes and fear continue to block access to health care for some
For many, access to health care is a problem compounded by many factors including stigma, lack of adequate or any health care facilities or even expense of treatment. But during the Social Forum, participants talked about ways human rights can combat discrimination and improve access to health care for all.
24 October 2017
UN Human Rights Chief offers her support for a new Convention on the rights of older persons
UN Human Rights Chief offers her support for a new Convention on the rights of older persons
Opening the 2014 Social Forum in Geneva, UN Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay urges governments to consider a dedicated Convention to promote and protect the human rights of older persons.
8 April 2014
A story of Inclusion: Ramona Constantin’s struggle
A story of Inclusion: Ramona Constantin’s struggle
As a former migrant from Romania, Ramona Constantin has finally found her voice in her Manchester community and is working to help other Roma’s become active participants in community life.
26 November 2012
Globalization – a paradox of perils and opportunities
Globalization – a paradox of perils and opportunities
The importance of people-centred development in an increasingly globalized world is the focus of this year’s Social Forum in Geneva.
10 October 2012
The right to development – who decides
The right to development – who decides
The Social Forum of the Human Rights Council meets to explore many and varied views on the way forward in making the right to development a reality for all.
17 October 2011
The 2010 Social Forum - Climate change and human rights
The 2010 Social Forum - Climate change and human rights
The Social Forum of the Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva calls for the integration of human rights in end of year negotiations aimed at reaching agreement on a global climate change treaty.
11 October 2010