Hi there, everyone!
I hope you all are doing well and surviving the heat wave! This week, I am introducing you all to an incredible foundation called the Clooney Foundation for Justice. As a huge fan of human rights lawyer Amal Clooney and her work, I was beyond enthralled to hear about this foundation that is dedicated to monitoring human rights trials all around the world to ensure that people are receiving their due process in court. It was founded by the current Co-Presidents Amal Clooney and her husband George Clooney.
Today, I’m talking about this project, informing you about the eye-opening and important issues they raise awareness about, their amazing goals, and how you can help.
Let’s dive right into it!
The foundation’s initiative is to bring about awareness for trials that are taking place around the world concerning topics such as journalists’ rights, freedom of speech, among many others. To watch the foundation’s introduction video (please do!), see here or click the attached video from YouTube below. It gives a great sense of what the foundation stands for in a concise way.
As stated on their website, their motto follows a quote from Louis Brandeis, a former Supreme Court Justice: “Sunlight is the greatest disinfectant.” The organization sheds light on trials that are taking place around the world concerning human rights in places all around the world.
The Clooney Foundation for Justice also supports programs through donations and partnerships that deal with rights for refugees, their educational rights, immigrant families, and fighting against hate. The foundation regularly updates on their latest statements, works, and other related things under their news section. To see their official about page, click here. Below, I’m diving into some other neat sectors of this foundation.
TrialWatch: True to its name
One of the coolest parts of the website is the ability to view their TrialWatch map, which shows some of the latest trials happening around the world. It’s so innovative and informative! An individual can click on certain countries on the map to view what is happening in that specific region.
Below the map, more information about trials taking place is provided; these involve human rights, such as defending human rights lawyer’s ability to keep practicing their work, among many other topics. To learn more about TrialWatch, click here for a Q&A about it.
For a case in Turkey called People v. Cansu Piskin, the Clooney Foundation for Justice has released a report about this case concerning the rights of a legal reporter who was prosecuted for “terrorism-related charges after she published the name of a prosecutor in an article about a case” (this quote and all others are extracted from the CFJ official website). Click here to see more about this report.
CFJ Initiatives and collaborations
This foundation also donates to and works with The Sentry, an organization that tracks the dirty money connected to African war criminals. This work is essential and necessary to these times, as the region from “northeast to central Africa is the deadliest war zone globally since World War II.”
In addition, the CFJ has also started an initiative called The Docket that works with investigative groups that will assess war crimes and injustices taking place to prompt trials about these happenings. This section of the foundation has not yet released as much as other parts; however, I am extremely excited and I would love to be apart of this cause someday (I just gotta keep working towards that undergrad degree and/or law degree, of course).
Wherever you are, there is a part for you to help out. As this is a foundation that works internationally, there is a place for everyone and anyone to help out.
Before the foundation officially launched, I put my name down to start receiving news on their latest work, cases, and announcements. I was already huge fan, haha! This is an easy way to keep up to date with their latest happenings. Click here to subscribe to their newsletters.
2. Submitting a TrialAlert
To watch trials that are taking place that pose serious consequences and/or threats to human rights, there is a form called TrialAlert for people to write a description about these types of trials that are currently happening. If you feel that there is a trial taking place that needs attention, please fill out the form. It can be submitted anonymously, as well.
3. Becoming a Trial Monitor
This foundation asks individuals who feel that they can watch trials to request to become a trial monitor to ensure that they are being fair and following the right procedures.
There are certain qualifications for this position, such as speaking one of the official UN languages and being at least over the age of 18. Additional references, resume, and experience with the law follow as well. Check out the form here to apply and found out more about the criteria for this job. By now, I am sure that you are well aware that the second I can meet all of these qualifications, I will be submitting a form.
Furthermore, one can apply to be apart of the TrialWatch experts panel. People that meet the qualifications found on this page can apply.
To make a donation, click here! There are many organizations and causes that the Clooney Foundation for Justice donates to that relate to their work in human rights; these are listed on their website and go into further detail. Click here to learn more about some of these projects.
I hope you enjoyed reading this post and feel completely inspired! This organization is incredible, and I absolutely love their initiative. As a rising undergraduate, I really hope to be able to work with this foundation one day and contribute my skills to this awesome cause.
Once again, click here for their official website. All the information obtained for this blog post has come from the Clooney Foundation for Justice site. Additional resources and information can be found there.
Also! You should definitely check out this video (click the link!) to watch Amal Clooney making an incredible speech about sexual violence in conflict at a United Nations conference. Note: this video is a shortened 2 minute overview involving additional background; her original speech can be found here. Words cannot describe how much I admire her work. My second biggest wish (the first one being world peace): I get to continue and help with some of her human rights work!
Alright, friends, have a great rest to your week! Stay inspired.
Quote of the post:
“If you are a lawyer, and you want to take on easier cases, you can prosecute traffic violations or something. You’d have a very high rate of success, and you could probably sleep more easily at night. But that’s not what drives me.” -Amal Clooney