THE RIGHT PLACE TO BE! TO ADVOCATE, IDEATE, INNOVATE AND TO MAKE A CHANGE! TOGETHER LET’S CREATE A SUSTAINABLE AND PEACEFUL SOCIETY FOR ALL!
The Road to Rights International is a registered youth-led, voluntary organization established on the 4th of February 2009 in Sri Lanka. It is the evolution of a childhood dream, to serve humanity from the age of 8, aimed at supporting and empowering young people on creating opportunities, skills development, creativity, and innovation by taking a Human rights-based approach towards Peace and Sustainable Development. The organization holds a significant history of 12 years, by giving opportunities to many young people across Sri Lanka and beyond.
Building a peaceful and sustainable future for all empowering young people.
We advance volunteerism by strengthening leadership, encouraging innovation and empowering individuals to create a peaceful and sustainable future for people and the planet.
CREATION OF THE UNITED CHILDREN CLUB IN 1998
It was in the year 1998 that our founder, as an eight year old child, initiated the first social group together with his two siblings, naming it the United Children’s Club. The reason behind this was prompted by an underprivileged family living next door with three children, who did not have access to education. Their inability to attend school due to the lack of funds was the main reason that motivated the founder and his siblings to take action. Their constant thirst for knowledge was heart wrenching, especially seeing them anxiously awaiting his arrival home from school to be able to take their books and go through them in earnest. This was the primary reason that inspired our founder to start the United Children’s Club with them as members of the initiative.
The other significant instance that inspired was during the 1998 Commonwealth Games when he saw people of different skin complexions embrace each other as a gesture of friendship. He was taken aback as it was conflicting to what he had heard as a child growing up about the discrimination of people based on race and skin complexion. This inspired him to organize a sports competition designed after the Olympic games for children in his hometown.
As the years passed, he was able to identify the gaps amongst various groups in society through the activities he initiated and engaged in. These encounters encouraged him to find ways to build bridges, empower, and educate communities by raising awareness of rights and helping them understand their value as members of society through capacity building activities.
TEEN LEADERS IN 2005
As their scope expanded and aspirations widened, United Children named their organization, the TEEN LEADERS in 2005 - trying to address the issues of equal distribution of resources.
It was a continuous process of development for this dynamic team, who figured that capacity building was another tool for prosperity for this Island nation. The team continued their journey with roaring ideas and believed that change was a possibility which eventually led to the birth of ‘’Roar International’’.
After much debate and brainstorming about the cause and effect on society, the organization which commenced as United Children, to create a better world, identified and understood that the values they instill and capacity they built was a part of a greater idea of Equality and Justice.
This deliberation triggered in 2009, continued at length. They inherited a value system to abide by – that is the Thirty Human Rights and a plan that they adapted to – the United Nations Development Goals.
THE ROAD TO RIGHTS IN 04TH FEBRUARY 2009
Thus in 2009, Road to Rights International was born.
For Sri Lanka, especially around 2009 and beyond, Human Rights was a topic of importance in disguise. The notion when the term was uttered did not bring a face of satisfaction to most, rather it was controversial. Human Rights was mostly used as a means of restoring justice, but often thought to be implemented in a punitive term.
However, the Road to Rights movement envisioned a different approach to these deliberations and believed that it had to be tackled in a different perspective. Thus the journey to educate people on their basic Human Rights and responsibilities began as core values of the society.
They started educating school children and youth on Human Rights. A set of values that guided mankind from history. The fundamental rights that were inherited upon every individual merely because of them being a Human.
Road to Rights has so far conducted nearly 1000+ workshops at schools all over Sri Lanka. They also approached Sunday schools and higher education centers to spread awareness on mutual respect, peace and love.
After the first five years, the Youth group took the awareness programmes to the streets. They were supported by a strong network of volunteers who believed in an equal society. They went to public places – Railway Stations, Bus Stops, Parks and Beaches – possibly every place that they thought they could get some time from people who are waiting to be informed and inspired.
Journey on Sustainable Development Goals.
When the United Nations developed the Sustainable Development Goals and declared it as the international agenda in 2015, Road to Rights found that this sustainable mechanism shares many aspects of what it aspires to achieve for the betterment of mankind. Thereafter the youth group developed its own value system that was built upon the basis of Human Rights and driven by the Sustainable Development Goals.