Standing Up

How do I advocate for my rights as a young person while staying safe?

What is youth rights advocacy and why is it important? Youth rights advocacy means promoting human rights for young people, including freedom of thought, expression, association and the right to access information. It means standing up for your rights as a young person. Although young people have many rights in theory, in practice you may face various barriers and obstacles to enjoying, or exercising, those rights. History has shown that marginalized groups often have to work hard to be granted rights, even though human rights are universal and inalienable. Youth rights advocacy can help address injustices and promote human rights for young people. While you have the right to promote your rights, this does not mean that you are obliged to do so at any cost. This section provides additional information on how to go about advocating for youth rights, while ensuring that you stay safe from harm.

How can I stand up for my rights?

There are many different ways in which you can stand up for your rights as a young person, from very basic, simple actions to developing and implementing advocacy and campaigns. Below are a number of important, basic steps you should consider if you want to advocate for youth rights. Some steps may be more relevant than others depending on the context in which you are working. You may also want to consult other advocacy resources and consider additional factors or steps that apply to your situation. The UN Human Rights Office’s Stand up for human rights campaign may provide some ideas and inspiration. For more information on the campaign, visit:

Tips for youth rights advocacy

Here are some top tips. Some may be more relevant than others, so feel free to reflect and think about some of your own tips based on your situation and experience.

Stay safe

Safety and wellbeing, including when it comes to mental health, are utmost priorities when advocating for your rights.

Examples of successful youth rights advocacy

Achieving success in your advocacy to have a lasting impact for youth rights depends on many different factors, and you cannot control all of them.