March 9, 2009
Habitat Bolivia engages local and international volunteers in public education programs about the human right to adequate housing.
In Bolivia, together with Peace Corps volunteers and the Khuska group (a Quechua Word meaning “together”), Habitat is implementing a project called, “Community Development With Focus on Citizen Rights.” The project is geared towards children between 8-12 years who are living in the María Auxiliadora community in Cochabamba.
These volunteers help to strengthen the culture of human rights within young people, so that they can begin to internalize the human right to adequate housing. Additionally, volunteers support the development of collective systems for including children in the dynamics of community development.
Human rights education helps to strengthen the capacity of young people as new social actors, in that it helps them to contribute to the construction of their society in a just, equitable and sustainable way. For this reason, Habitat Bolivia sought volunteers from the Peace Corps and Khuska group to help develop sessions which introduce human rights to young people—emphasizing self-esteem and leadership.
The program is bi-monthly, from April 2008-April 2011. In the first phase, both international and local volunteers consolidate the focus groups. Later, in the second phase of the project, local volunteers introduce the concept of human rights. The volunteers help the young people to understand the human right to adequate housing within the context of the right to the city, and as an example of the interdependence and indivisibility of the rights of all people.
Alejandra Dominguez is the Advocacy Specialist for Habitat for Humanity Bolivia.