Since 2008, the National Center for Civil and Human Rights has made increasing awareness and understanding of the UDHR one of its objectives. In partnership with Ford Motor Company, the Center is expanding its efforts with an essay contest called “Read it. Embrace it. Express it.” The contest will be held in conjunction with other activities observing International Human Rights Month.
“On Dec. 10, the world will remember the outstanding commitment that numerous nations made in signing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” said Pamela Alexander, director of Community Development, Ford Motor Company. “We are proud to celebrate this commitment by recognizing the dedication of Atlanta-area students – the future of our world – who embrace and uphold these principles.”
Ford and NCCHR are reinforcing their commitment to universal dignity and justice by sponsoring this essay contest for middle and high school students in the Atlanta area. The contest encourages students to express how they interpret one or more of the 30 articles in the UDHR and the relevance to today’s world and the future. Scholarships totaling $10,000 will be awarded to contest winners, supported by a grant from Ford Motor Company Fund.
Ford’s sponsorship of the celebration includes a luncheon on December 8 hosted by Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed with local officials to mark the celebration. The Youth Ensemble of Atlanta will perform a theatrical production incorporating excerpts from the winning essays at the Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University on Dec. 9. The signature Center production is entitled "RISE." As part of Ford’s overall commitment to education, a VIP reception will be held to celebrate 32 Atlanta based Ford Blue Oval Scholars who received scholarships from Ford through the UNCF.
“We are glad to partner with Ford Motor Company to host International Human Rights Day and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights events in Atlanta,” said Doug Shipman, National Center for Civil and Human Rights CEO. “Their generous involvement has made a vibrant community celebration of human rights ideals possible, and is directly providing for young people’s participation. Supporting student leadership is part of our mission and part of Ford’s, and we know our joint effort will make the 2011 celebration the best yet.”
The UDHR is based on the “inherent dignity” of all people and affirms the equal rights of all men and women, in addition to their right to freedom. For more than 60 years the UDHR has served as a vibrant moral conscience to the world community. It provides international norms and standards to which the world community is expected to embrace. Inherent in the UDHR are these values: Respect for the rule of law and the dignity of the person, fairness and equitable treatment, tolerance and the acceptance of diversity, and the fundamental principle of democratic participation. A copy of the UDHR can be found by visiting www.un.org/en/
About Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services
Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services works with community partners to advance driving safety, education and American heritage and community life. For more than 60 years, Ford Motor Company Fund has operated with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company. The award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life program teaches new drivers through a variety of hands-on and interactive methods. Innovation in education is encouraged through national programs that enhance high school learning and provide college scholarships and university grants. Through the Ford Volunteer Corps, more than 27,000 Ford employees and retirees work on projects each year that better their communities in more than 40 countries. For more information, visit www.community.ford.com.
About the National Center for Civil and Human Rights (civilandhumanrights.org)
The National Center for Civil and Human Rights will display The Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection, the award-winning Without Sanctuary lynching exhibit and the Benny Andrews John Lewis Collection. The Center will serve as a hub for ongoing dialogue, attracting world-renowned speakers and artists who work on a variety of human rights topics. Located in Downtown Atlanta at Pemberton Place and equipped with broadcast and event space, the Center will host civil and human rights conversations among scholars, organizations and the public.