Making Human Rights a Household Concept is its mission. Standing by victims of discrimination, repression and violence is the very raison d’etre of the South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) headquartered in Lingarajapuram in Bangalore. Envisioning a fearless society which uniformly respects the rights of everyone and particularly the marginalized, some concerned citizens started SICHREM in 1995. The NGO has been responding to the growing insensitivity to the law by the state and others through direct intervention, helpline, campaigns and tracking and reporting on unacceptable actions such as torture of prisoners, ill treatment of kids in care homes et al.
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In addition to the above, SICHREM also believes in creating awareness among children, youth and adults about their basic rights and entitlements, through focused programmes. "If teachers in government schools neglect their students, that is because they are rarely held accountable. But once kids know that obtaining education is their prerogative they ensure that they are taught regularly and satisfactorily. Children even complain against offending members of the staff", shared Margaret Sampath, a Programme Officer at SICHREM. She has seen through the Human Rights education programme that the NGO has been running in around 120 government schools in Karnataka and 55 in Kerala. Under this activity, SICHREM trains teachers for 5 days to sensitize them about Human Rights and incorporate it in their regular classes at least twice a week. This continues for 3 years for students in classes VI – VII and includes evaluation and follow up 2-3 times a year.
For those interested in knowing more about rights of human beings, SICHREM conducts a comprehensive one year diploma on Human Rights theory and practice in collaboration with St. Joseph’s Evening College. Launched in 2008 with the Political Science department of the institution, this course introduces students to treaties, bodies, laws pertaining to the rights of all human beings. It includes field trips that expose learners to typically excluded communities and their challenges. The programme also allows students to meet and work with and individuals, groups and organizations that are striving to create a environment that accepts diversity. Some of the assist socially and economically backward people to better their lives and ensure that they are getting their fundamental entitlements.
Manohar R, Head of Programmes at SICHREM revealed, "At our school programmes, children learn and demand their rights while teachers discontinue corporal punishment despite initial reluctance. This encourages us to continue and enhance the initiative!"
To be a friend, volunteer or partner of SICHREM or enrol in the study programme, reach the NGO at:
1st Floor, Anjanappa Complex,
35, Hennur Main Road,
St. Thomas Town PO
Bangalore 560 084
Phone: +91 80 2547 3922/ 2580-4072
email : firstname.lastname@example.org