Voices for Human Rights: Nisa Aliyeva, National Youth Organizer
I am a first-year student at the University of Toronto, St. George Campus, with a great passion for human rights. My interest in Amnesty International and community involvement was inspired by my mother. She worked with the UNHCR for many years and would bring home stories about refugees and their path to finding safety. Those stories had a huge impact on my life, and I developed a desire to help those who are in need of justice and safety.
I am currently a National Youth Organizer with Amnesty International Canada and have volunteered with Amnesty in the GTA for over three years now. With every event and meeting I attend at Amnesty, I learn a lot about global issues and also meet inspiring people.
For the past 3 years, I raised awareness in my high school about what is happening in the world, inspiring them to learn and to help bring justice to those in need. Due to my involvement with Amnesty, I helped get my school involved in different campaigns. One of the biggest one was the Butterflies for Mexico Campaign in support of the families of over 40,000 missing people in Mexico. For this campaign, I had the school students and staff draw over a hundred butterflies with messages of support for the families affected.
I have taken part in a number of Amnesty events and initiatives such as the Amnesty GTA Youth CAfe, Pride Toronto, Women’s Marches, street actions in Kensington Market and represented the organization at the annual Volunteer Youth Expo Toronto. As a first year student I recently joined the Amnesty Club at UofT St George campus.
Nisa and fellow national youth organizers at the 2017 Amnesty GTA Youth CAFE
The community work I have done has affected me positively and motivated me to do more! Amnesty International Canada has helped me develop my experience and knowledge of human rights and taught me life-long skills – which I am sure I will use in the future. I hope to continue volunteering with AI and possibly take on a research role one day!