UN Human Rights Prize
Human Rights Center "Viasna", Belarus
The Human Rights Center "Viasna" is a Belarusian non-governmental human rights organization established in 1996 by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ales Bialiatski. Viasna focuses on providing legal and humanitarian assistance to victims of political repression and exposing human rights violations. The organization also documents torture, combats the death penalty in the country, conducts human rights education, election observation, and monitors peaceful assemblies and trials. Until 2021, Viasna had 15 branches throughout Belarus, which brought together about 100 human rights activists and more than 100 volunteers. At the moment, most of the activists continue to work from abroad, mainly in Lithuania, Poland, and Georgia.
Viasna played a pivotal role amid the unprecedented human rights crisis triggered by the 2020 protests, providing important services to the public, both by shedding light on the scale of the crackdown and offering an array of remedies to the thousands of victims.
For its active involvement in mitigating the aftermath of the violent attack on peaceful protesters and other critical voices, Viasna had its leaders imprisoned and activities outlawed in Belarus. Despite this, the organization continues its work against the backdrop of the shrinking space for the country's civil society and new repressive legislation and practices.
Julienne Lusenge, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Julienne Lusenge is a Congolese defender of justice, peace and gender equality. She is president of the board of directors of female solidarity for peace and integral development (‘’SOFEPADI’’)a national organization working for the promotion and defense of the rights women and girls, the promotion of peace and peaceful resolution of conflicts, and improving the political participation of women. The organization also promotes women's leadership, gender and gender equality, and the fight against serious violations against women based in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo. (DRC). Ms Lusenge is also Executive Director of the Fund for Congolese Women, the only feminist fund in the DRC that offers grants to women's organizations to work on six distinct areas: advocacy, empowerment, women's political leadership, conflict transformation, sexual and reproductive health/HIV/AIDS, climate justice and environmental protection.
Ms Lusenge has participated in national security council and a civil society briefer. She emphasizes that women are necessary in all levels of decision making discussions around seeking peace.
A tireless defender of human rights in general and those of women in particular, her courage and determination have been recognized at local, national, regional, and international levels, and has earned her numerous awards and honorary mentions in recognition for her dedication and sacrifice , sometimes at the risk of her own life. She dedicates her prize to all Congolese women.
Amman Center for Human Rights Studies, Jordan
Founded in 1999, the Amman Center for Human Rights Studies (ACHRS) is an independent, regional, scientific, advocacy center for studies, research and training on human rights issues and democracy. The organization has had special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) since 2006.
In pursuit of contributing to the dissemination and understanding of human rights, its work and activities are aimed at strengthening civil society in Jordan and in the Arab region, and at inducing a change to the general level of awareness and sensibility towards human rights and democracy.
The projects carried out by the ACHRS mainly concentrate on training for democracy and human rights as they are closely related and highly complementary. Conducting studies and research to serve as an informational basis is a further means for ACHRS to achieve its goals. While keeping in mind that human rights and democracy are relevant to all segments of society, the organization’s activities mainly focus on women and youth.
The ACHRS organizes educational, intellectual, and cultural activities. Nevertheless, the focus of its work remains on capacity-building through training courses and workshops; providing and disseminating information and facilitating the exchange of experiences between different sectors of society and between non-governmental organizations and other civil society actors. This includes convening conferences, round tables, seminars and discussion rounds, and conducting and facilitating studies and research, issuing publications and documenting data.
Julio Pereyra Sánchez, Uruguay
Julio Pereyra Sánchez is a human rights activist focusing on the rights of the child, persons with disabilities and Indigenous Peoples.
As a person with autism, he is a community educator working in Misiones (Argentina)and founder of the protest proposal “'Caminos de Tiza”.
His work, which has traveled throughout Latin America, is based on social and educational inclusion, the prevention of human trafficking, as well as addressing malnutrition and infant mortality. Despite facing censorship, this neuropsychology educator teaches about primary health care, and sexual and reproductive health rights, and develops therapeutic-pedagogical interventions in indigenous communities, rural colonies, marginalized neighborhoods, and garbage dumps. Mr. Sánchez also teaches literacy and creates community libraries.
His itinerant school operates under pressure in areas of drug trafficking and people smuggling. He teaches in four languages about gender violence, zoonosis and parasitosis, rights and laws.
Mr. Sánchez's work has been recognized by the Global Teacher Awards (India), the "Espiral" International Educational Award (Spain) and the Ibero-American Award for Teaching Work (Association of Educating for Human Development). He has contributed to the re-institutionalization of more than 700 children in the educational system, and has helped provide access to vaccines, identity documents, public policies and scholarships for his students.
Named "Verá Mirí" by the Mbyá Guarani community, this popular educator has helped to reduce school dropout, infant mortality, and adolescent pregnancy rates, as well as helped reduce endemic diseases such as dengue, leishmaniasis, scabies, tungiasis and pediculosis within the community.
Thanks to his work on early detection of neurodevelopmental disorders and the creation of early childhood spaces, he is known as "the teacher of the missionary jungle."
Global Coalition of civil society organizations, Indigenous Peoples, social movements and local communities for “the universal recognition of the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment”
The Global Coalition of Civil Society Organizations, Indigenous Peoples, Social Movements, and Local Communities for the Universal Recognition of the Right to a Clean, Healthy, And Sustainable Environment is a diverse and global coalition of over 1350 civil society organizations, Indigenous Peoples, social movements, and local communities from 75 countries across the world, united in the call to the UN and its Member States to recognize and uphold the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment.
Established in 2020, the Coalition builds on the work of countless advocates, human rights and environmental defenders, Indigenous Peoples, trade unions, women, children, youth, and social justice and faith-based movements who, over the last decades, have advocated for the effective protection and fulfillment of the human right of everyone, everywhere, to a healthy environment.
Built on principles of collaboration, inclusivity, diversity, and justice, the Coalition has been instrumental in the recognition of the right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment by the Human Rights Council in October 2021 and by the General Assembly in July 2022. In doing so, the Coalition worked alongside several States, UN agencies, current and former Special Rapporteurs, as well as other allies, to advocate for the universal recognition of this human right.
The Coalition relies on multi-dimensional, intersectional, regional, global, and coordinated approaches which support and protect the rights and promote the participation of all persons, starting with those most impacted by the accelerating triple planetary crisis — the climate emergency, the collapse of biodiversity and ecosystems, and increasing toxic threats — which is pushing against planetary boundaries, and threatening our very existence and exacerbating systemic inequalities,