The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is responsible for leading the United Nations human rights programme, and for promoting and protecting all human rights established under the Charter of the United Nations and international law.
OHCHR recognises that durable and sustainable social change comes from civic organization motivated by principles of non-discrimination, participation, accountability, and respect for human dignity.
Every day in every part of the world, civil society actors?non-governmental organisations, community-based organisations, faith-based groups, unions, grassroots and social movements, to name but a few?contribute to the advan-cement of human rights. They seek to shape public policies through advocacy and education of government officials, politicians, businesses, international organizations, the general public, as well as other civil society actors.
Civil society actors also work to heal communities at conflict; give voice to the powerless; carry out research and monitoring; and assist vulnerable populations to claim their rights. They work to advance all human rights, including the right to development.
The Civil Society Section is dedicated to empowering civil society actors through increasing their awareness of international human rights standards, information and strategies, as well as developing their capacities to engage effectively with the UN human rights system.
Working with civil society to promote and protect human rights is a strategic priority for OHCHR.
Download "Working with the United Nations Human Rights Programme: A Handbook for Civil Society" and join our contact list: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/AboutUs/Pages/CivilSociety.aspx