Staff Advisors Opinion
“Acts of charity affect change in the social condition;
Acts of social justice effect change in social policy”.
My experience in international development has included work with primary health care workers in Bogota, Colombia, silk-work artisans in Thailand, women’s activist group in Chile, and Indigenous groups of the South Pacific and British Columbia regarding marine tenure. All the projects involved local people challenging social injustices and struggling for their human rights.
Being asked to participate in the Maples Amnesty International Group by the students was an honour, and continues to be a privilege. It is exhilarating to see students looking beyond charity and into the causes of economic and social inequalities. Activities of the Group have always been planned and initiated by students for students and they have run the gambit from education on human rights abuses and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, guest speakers from The Congo and Congo Café which promoted Fair Trade, and finally to the annual Social Justice and Stewardship Fairs. These members of the Group are Canada’s future leaders for advancing social justice as a fundamental element of good governance.
By Barbara Johnson
I have been a Maples Amnesty Group Coordinator since its foundation in 2006. In those years, I have worked with many talented and justice loving students. Throughout the years, the students and I have campaigned on the behalf of social justice here and abroad.
I believe that the Maples Amnesty Group is a key outlet for students to fight for justice and human rights. It is an outlet that I did not have as a high school student, so I see my membership as making up for lost time. I hope anyone who is interested in justice and human rights considers joining the group.
By Jason Allard