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Our Vision

Our Vision

The WHRI was founded in 2004 by feminist jurist Alda Facio and Professor Angela Miles of the Adult Education and Community Development Program of OISE/UT in order to offer a space for feminist, activist learning about women’s human rights.

Unlike other human rights trainings that focus primarily on legal analysis, the mission of the WHRI is to cultivate transformative, feminist leadership in the area of CEDAW and women’s human rights by empowering participants with the knowledge and understanding of how they can use these tools to create change in their own contexts.

The WHRI uniquely contextualizes the CEDAW Convention in both jurisprudence and practice, and offers in-depth study of how to apply its principles to diverse issues affecting women around the world.

The Four Pillars of the Women's Human Rights Education Institute


1. CEDAW: Women’s Human Rights Theory, Praxis, and Activism

  • Understanding basic notions and principles of human rights law and practice
  • Mastery of the core principles and substantive framework of the CEDAW, including the principles of substantive equality, non-discrimination and state obligation
  • Understanding WHR through CEDAW jurisprudence & NGO activism
  • CEDAW as a visionary tool to promote the realization of women’s human rights

3. Human Rights Education, Teaching, & Learning

  • The right to know your rights: education as a key component of human rights praxis
  • Theoretical approaches to education and training on human rights
  • Participatory exploration of training and educational techniques
  • Workshop planning and facilitation skills

2. Feminist Frameworks

  • History and development of the international women’s human rights movement
  • Understanding patriarchal paradigms- structures of violence and oppression
  • Intersectionality – diversity and commonality amongst women
  • Feminist methodologies and analysis, and collaborative feminist knowledge-building

4. Living Our Rights: Relationships, Self-care and Sustainability

  • Protection of human rights defenders and activist sustainability
  • Reclaiming the body: wellness and self-care as a political and personal act
  • Embodied Learning: new and transformative paradigms
  • Human rights in all areas of life: conscious communication & conflict resolution; decolonization of the mind and body; collaborative and transformative approaches to leadership