Rockridge School,West Vancouver UA Network wins the John Gibbard Memorial Award
Students at Rockridge School’s Amnesty group in West Vancouver rock! In October 2012, the Board of Directors of the United Nations Association in Canada, Vancouver Branch informed the weekly Urgent Action writers that they had received this year’s John Gibbard Memorial Award.
Dan Conner, who nominated the group, acknowledged “the dedication of this core group of students to upholding the values of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights.” He explained that “every week for the past five years, they have met to check the latest alert from Amnesty International’s Canadian headquarters concerning people whose fundamental human rights are threatened, especially the right to think and speak freely. This group has committed itself to immediately writing letters to the governments involved on behalf of those unable to speak for themselves and who urgently need help. This dedication continues all year round, as the group stays in touch through Facebook and email when unable to meet directly.” Calling them “outstanding examples of global citizenship”, Dan sees them sharing “their passion for human rights with other like-minded students, encouraging and mentoring younger grades so that the fight for human rights will continue in our school after they graduate this year. They are also resolved to stay in touch as a group and to continue their work wherever they are in the world.”
The Association presented the award to the students on United Nations Day at the end of October. The Chair of the Gibbard committee described the event as “very uplifting”. Anna Terrana congratulated Turner Brown, Scott Brownlie, Natasha Heavyside, Blake Henderson, Duncan Lucas, Olivia MacNeil and Anna Robertson who she found “amazing” and said their words gave her “hope for the future”.
Amnesty International congratulates Anna, Olivia, Duncan, Blake, Natasha, Turner and Scott and salutes Dan Conner for facilitating the students’ activism! Photo Credit: Courtney Szto