In this guest blog, Carrie Supple introduces Journey to Justice, a human rights education charity of which she is the Director. Carrie has 30 years of experience in education and human rights work, see: www.teachingforsolidarity.com.
“This is the first training I’ve attended which inspired me to do something. We know what the next part of our campaign is now… We needed a strategy, and now we have one.”
(Participant, Children North East)
Talking to young people throughout the UK as we set up Journey to Justice, there was disenchantment but also a desire to be constructive. They realised that in order to achieve meaningful change, people need to learn how to organise. The iconic example for them was the US civil rights movement which has inspired so many other liberation movements for women, gay people and for peace, and is not yet won.
“Since I joined JtoJ I have the confidence to make a change and speak out. I learned a lot about who changed history.”
Journey to Justice (or JtoJ) combines teaching about human rights movements, the music and arts of protest and tools of social change. Our work provides opportunities for beneficiaries, especially those who feel marginalised, to see themselves as part of a powerful story of social change.
“We learnt that we all have a voice. It’s just what we do with it that can make a difference.”
(Participant, Girlz United, Tower Hamlets)
JtoJ is an alliance of hundreds of volunteers across all age groups, sectors and regions of the country who believe that stories from the past of ‘ordinary’ people who took action for justice and human rights can inspire us to become active citizens ourselves. Our flagship project is an interactive travelling exhibition which tells little-known stories of people involved in the US Civil Rights Movement, makes links to historic and current UK movements for change and includes music, poetry and art.
“Really powerful and beautifully assembled exhibition… Rekindled my desire to continue the fight for equality and justice for all. Sometimes life makes us complacent and ‘too busy’ to realize there are still many battles to be fought.”
(Visitor to the exhibition, Sheffield)
We’ve been on Tyneside and Wearside, in South Yorkshire and East and South London and are in Nottingham now until June 19th then moving on to Bristol, the West Country, Leicester and Humberside. In each place we work with a steering group who choose, research and display local UK less-told histories and run linked education and arts activities they create that continue after the exhibition has left.
We run training programmes with Saturday schools, alternative provisions, the National Citizen Service, schools and youth and community groups.
“We can make a change by promoting equality and telling younger people about these stories and their struggles. We have to stick up for each other.”
(Participant, Alternative Provision, Islington)
Our aims strike a chord with people of all ages, whether they are concerned about poverty, racism, care of the elderly, unemployment or domestic violence.
“Change happens slowly and it takes persistence, perseverance and sacrifice. Some of the battles were won because innocent blood was shed. Freedom was not free!”
(Janice Wesley who took part in the Birmingham, Alabama, school children’s march in 1963 when she was 14)
Website: www.journeytojustice.org.uk Twitter: @freedomandjobs
Journey to Justice work with school students at George Mitchell School, Leyton, Spring 2015 (12 minutes) filmed and edited by Winstan Whitter
https://vimeo.com/169562985 Mark Hutchinson (former JtoJ Chair) with our travelling exhibition in Sheffield (Sheffield Live 3.36 minutes)
https://vimeo.com/192959375 Journey to Justice North East pilot of the exhibition programme, 2015 (11 minutes) filmed by Hugh Kelly, edited by Prof. Steve Hawley.
Find out about membership: http://journeytojustice.org.uk/about/jtoj-membership/
For information about our training, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
We have a fundraising party on June 13th hosted by JtoJ patron human rights barrister Helena Kennedy. Find out more at:
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