WHRI Online Program

Learn about women’s human rights and CEDAW from a feminist activist perspective!

Women’s Human Rights Education Institute Intensive Virtual Program

This virtual program was delivered August 10 – October 9, 2020.

Watch our website for future virtual program offerings.

Program Description:

The Women’s Human Rights Education Institute has been offering our flagship WHRI Intensive Institute in international settings since 2004. The WHRI Intensive is a capacity-building program for women’s human rights defenders that explores international women’s human rights theory and practice, bringing a feminist activist orientation to the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, CEDAW.

We are pleased to offer this unique capacity-building program fully online using a combination of self-led online learning and virtual classroom sessions.

The 2-month WHRI Intensive Virtual Program is an opportunity to explore ways to use CEDAW and other international human rights mechanisms to strengthen human rights advocacy work, to promote intersectional feminist women’s human rights analysis and visioning, and to develop action-plans for implementing your learning, enhancing the impact of your feminist social justice work. Program participants benefit from a diverse array of moderators and presenters with expertise in the field, as well as through horizontal learning amongst participants bringing their own experience and knowledge from their own contexts.

Through live webinars, online forums, video and readings, self-care practices, arts-based inquiry, online panels, and independent work, the WHRI Intensive Virtual Program creates a space for women’s human rights advocates to reflect on and analyze their work, to enhance their organizing and advocacy skills as well as to build solidarity with movements and activists around the world.

Note: to improve the course experience and support deeper learning, participants will be capped at no more than 25.

Course Faculty


Alda Facio (Costa Rica)
UN Working Group on Discrimination Against Women and Girls (WGDAWG)
WHRI Founder

Angela Lytle (Canada)
Executive Director, Women’s Human Rights Education Institute



Terry D. Ince (Trinidad & Tobago)
Convenor & Founding Member, CEDAW Committee of Trinidad and Tobago (CCoTT)


Dr. Amanda Dale (Canada)
Expert Panel Advisory Member, Canadian Femicide Observatory


Francesca Rufino (Italy)
Expressive Art Therapist


Kenita Placide (St Lucia)
Eastern Caribbean Alliance for Diversity and Equality (ECADE)


Melissa Upreti (Nepal)
UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women and Girls (WGDAWG)
Center for Women’s Global Leadership, Rutgers University


Course Objectives
  • To enhance the theoretical and practical understanding of CEDAW & WHR as a feminist framework and living document
  • To gain a deeper understanding of the form and function of the CEDAW review process
  • To explore ways to use CEDAW as well as other human rights mechanisms important for feminist advocacy and movement-building
  • To develop an identity as women’s human rights defender, part of an historical and ongoing international WHR movement
  • To develop a holistic, radical understanding of human rights and current global challenges
  • To gain exposure and understanding to alternative paradigms for global transformation

This is a 2-month course with 6 to 8 hours of engagement per week. Each weekly module will include:
Readings and video content (presentations, films, short videos etc)
Independent work to be submitted & forum discussion with moderator feedback
Weekly journal, self-reflection and self-care practices
Live sessions – Webinar presentation, discussion, panels etc.

The program will be hosted on www.learnwhr.org/moodle
Participants will have access to the live content via Zoom.

Note: We will do our best to make the live content accessible accounting for diverse time zones, but it may be challenging to find a universal time accessible for all. Participants will have access to the video recording afterward if unable to attend live, and can submit questions in advance if unable to attend the live sessions.

Course Overview

Visual of the course program, same information in text format below image

Week 1: Women’s Human Rights Visions: WHR Herstory
Week 2: Introduction to the UN Human Rights System
Week 3: Intro to CEDAW
Week 4: CEDAW as a Living Document
Week 5: Feminist Ancestors & Arts-Based Inquiry Workshop
Week 6: Complementary international mechanisms for feminist advocacy
Week 7: Groupings of Rights (SOGI, Reproductive Rights, Cultural Rights…)
Week 8: Violence Against Women as a Form of Discrimination
Week 9: Human Rights Visions & Action-Planning


There are no academic prerequisites for this program, and no legal background is required. The program is intended for advocates, activists, educators, researchers, feminist organizers, union reps, lawyers and change-makers who want to learn how to use UN women’s human rights mechanisms and standards to enhance the impact of their work for social change. The course is open to all genders and people of diverse backgrounds who have a deep commitment to gender equality. Women from under-represented groups are particularly invited to apply. See information below for course fees, scholarships and discounts.

To take this course you must:

  • Be committed to gender equality, non-discrimination and intersectional approaches to social justice
  • Be comfortable reading, writing, listening and speaking in English
  • Have a good internet connection and a computer that enables access to the online course forum and to live events scheduled during most weeks of the program (recordings will also be made available)
  • Be able to commit to 6-8 hours/week for the 2 months/9 weeks of the program in order to successfully complete the program
Registration & Course Fees

Registration & Course Fees:

The regular tuition fee for this program is $1200 USD.

A discounted tuition rate of $800 may be available:
The discounted rate is reserved for folks from organizations with an annual budget of less than $80,000 USD/year based in the Global South and groups or organizations representing marginalized or underrepresented groups of women based in the Global North.

Self-funded participants who are underwaged, full-time students without research grants, single parents with limited income, or have other challenging financial circumstances may be eligible, please inquire.

Organizations registering more than one person may inquire about group discounts.

For inquiries, contact Lakshya at applications@learnwhr.org.

Payment plans can be made available to facilitate participation, please inquire if you need time to pay off the program fees.

Note: the course is kept small providing an intimate learning environment with a wide array of facilitators. Tuition fees are collected to cover the costs of offering the program. It is not for profit.

Registration process
APPLY NOW If you are selected, we will notify you and provide information on payment and next steps.


We are pleased to announce that we have a limited number of full and partial tuition scholarships for this program, supported by the Channel Foundation and the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

These scholarships are earmarked for women advocates from the Global South who do not have access to institutional or personal funds to support participation in the program.  Women from under-represented groups are prioritized for tuition scholarships.  Associates of past scholarship recipients who are actively working with CEDAW and women’s human rights frameworks are very welcome.

If you wish to be considered for a scholarship, you must apply and answer the questions under the “scholarship applicants” section of the application form in detail.  If you are shortlisted, we will contact you and references that can attest to your work and ability to have impact with your learning.    Unfortunately we will not be able to accommodate all requests. Please seek funding support if you are able to, and help us support those who have no access to funds.  Payment plans are also available.