Desperation generates extremism. Illiterate people who have a difficult time making a living are more susceptible to the false promises of extremist groups. In large parts of Pakistan, where the education system barely exists, students are lucky if they learn the basics. Unaware of their rights as human beings, they fall prey to extremism.
Attorney Ihsan Ullah Hanjra is bravely breaking cultural barriers and delivering universal truths to Pakistan’s students by utilizing the educational materials provided by Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI). The nonprofit organization has been educating young people about the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights since 2001.
“Women are an integral part of society, but Pakistan is a male-dominated society,” Ullah Hanjra says. “Females have no right to go from home to outside. Females are tortured in homes, are murdered.”
His purpose in life, adds Ullah Hanjra, “is to convey the message of human rights to every citizen and every person of my country, and to create a better world.”
He is certainly doing that, having so far taught thousands of students about their rights and hundreds more how to teach others about theirs.
“I believe that if everyone knows their human rights and their responsibilities and knows how these rights have to be protected, Pakistan will be a better place for everyone,” he says.