Amnesty Day @ SHS

Katherine Bernier, Staff Writer

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On Tuesday, December 10th, Amnesty International Day was successfully held at the SHS library for another year, demonstrating the power of young people who care. Amnesty International is an after school club dedicated to raising awareness of humanitarian crises around the world. They sponsor a day when everyone presents the issues they researched and explain what is going on. After the presentations, they hope to have all the listeners sign a petition to help.

At SHS, not all groups simply deliver a speech: This year one group decided to create an interactive board game where you roll the dice and move through space that raises awareness about climate change. Other groups featured videos during their presentations. This year’s Amnesty Day featured issues such as the Refugee Crisis, human rights in Chile, the crisis in Venezuela, the crisis in Cameroon, and more. Likely, most people aren’t aware of most of these issues, especially highschool students. This is where Amnesty comes in to help educate us. 

The students work hard leading up to the day. SHS senior Grace Coyne said, “Each day we do some research and check the Amnesty website to see what kind of campaigns are going on right now,” but many of the amnesty projects are completed on the students’ own time, demonstrating their true dedication and passion for these topics. Their faculty advisor, SHS history teacher Kristen Emerson, checks in with them, but they independently complete their projects. 

Amnesty member freshman Emma Reel said, “I want kids to leave with awareness–especially with towns like Scituate, it is easy to live in a bubble.” Fellow Amnesty member Rebecca Murray commented, “I know it sounds cheesy, but we don’t have to worry about where our next meal is coming from. Places like Venezuela have nothing.” Murray believes that we should remain aware of how lucky we are. Both students agreed they don’t expect kids to go out and protest with signs but mainly to understand and remain aware of these issues. They want to keep others informed and encourage a positive impact on the rest of the world.