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  • Rosemarie Treanor 2:21 am on December 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , human rights   

    Women’s Rights- An Off Day 

    Hi all-

    Last week we did women’s rights at Cardozo. When we started it was apparent that everyone was having an off day, it was a Friday afternoon, who could blame them! Honestly it was a typical day in the classroom. We did some activities, read some examples, and discussed our feelings. But what was most interesting was the game we played. Midway through the lesson everything was really slowing down, so my co-facilitator suggested “Big Bootie.” No joke. The “Big Bootie” sings a little tune and everyone has a number. You have to say your number than someone else’s number and keep with the beat. It really got everyone pumped up and happy, and it worked great! We were singin’ and dancin’ the afternoon away!

    This week is LGBTQ rights, looking forward to it!


  • Rosemarie Treanor 3:06 am on November 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , human rights, public school   

    The Death Penalty 

    I apologize for the absence of posts recently; classes at Cardozo were cancelled for two Fridays in a row. Fear not, I am roaring back to all your computers with a new and exciting blog post!

    I must admit that I really missed the students; it was strange not seeing them at the end of their week to catch up. Last week my class discussed the death penalty in the context of human rights. It was a daunting subject, and I had no idea how the class would proceed. We started with an open discussion on the death penalty and reasons behind crime. We watched a few interview clips of prosecutors involved with high-profile crimes, which were extremely interesting. The students were captivated. (More …)

    • Chris 8:45 pm on November 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      What I would really like to know is how the students responded to the death penalty. Were any supportive of it being implemented at all?

      • Rosemarie Treanor 1:27 am on November 17, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Chris, thanks for reading. The death penalty received mixed reviews from the class, I don’t think anyone agreed with anyone else!

  • Rosemarie Treanor 2:15 am on October 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , holocaust, human rights, students   

    The Holocaust and Human Rights 

    Hi readers! Last Friday I was back in the classroom at Cardozo, ready and excited for another class. When I entered the classroom a few female students and I chatted over my clothes and fashion, and I was happy to talk to them about a fun subject. Our topic of the day was the Holocaust, and the previous week most students expressed their interest in the subject.

    We started with some icebreaker questions, and much to my delight the students actively participated. I was introduced to two new students, and I was ecstatic to see we had seven students attending the class. We discussed facts about the Holocaust and other genocides, and I was thrilled by the responses from the students. Many made impressive observations during our conversations and told personal family stories. The conversation grew a bit hostile and heated when we began talking about immigrant rights, so we steered the conversation back to the topic. (More …)

    • Sara 2:23 am on October 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Sounds like you are really starting to connect with them! Keep inspiring them with your fashion and sis-ness 🙂

    • Mike Martini 2:58 am on October 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Rose, you are an amazing person and an amazing role model for students who need it most!

    • Hannah 10:43 pm on October 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      It sounds like you are really inspiring these students Rosemarie; I’d really like to be a fly on the wall in one of your classes. Keep doing the amazing things you are doing.

  • Rosemarie Treanor 6:05 pm on October 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Amnesty International, , high school, human rights, Universal Declaration of Human Rights   

    Human Rights In The Classroom 

    Hi all! I know you are sitting at the edge of your seats, waiting for an update. Here it is!

    Last Friday October 8th we had our first lesson at a classroom at Cardozo High. My co-facilitator and I used icebreakers so the students could get to know us, and everyone participated! I was thrilled! We talked about going to college, and shared some experiences. I found myself defending the AU basketball team- who would have ever thought I knew so much about March Madness? So many Georgetown fans in the classroom, sigh.

    We discussed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN, and why we need rights in general. The Human Rights Education Service Corps (program of Amnesty International) provided excellent resources. One of our activities was to imagine how the world might be a better place. My favorite activity was when I wrote HUMAN on the board, and everyone said words that came to their minds. We had an extremely lively discussion.

    The highlights of the day included full classroom participation. I reiterated a million times that it was a safe space, that we were all here to listen to each other. The teacher told me she has never seen everyone speak during class. At the end of the class a student came up to me and shook my hand, and told me he was looking forward to next week. I am still touched, his comment made every second in the classroom completely worth it. (More …)

    • Sara 6:56 pm on October 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Rosie you are doing something really great! I’m so proud of my friend. Keep making the world a better place!

      • Rosemarie Treanor 2:24 am on October 12, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you Sara! You’re wonderful!

    • Fran 4:31 pm on October 12, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Rosie, I like the way you started the discussion by writing the word HUMAN on the blackboard. You are a natural teacher!

  • Anna Casey 10:25 pm on June 12, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: child rights, Development Education Network - Liberia, domestic violence, gender based violence, , human rights, , , Nimba County, women, women's empowerment, women's rights   

    Empowering some ladies (and men) in Nimba County 

    Hello Friends,

    After a long, amazing week in Nimba County, Liberia, I have made it safely back to the DEN-L compound. So much has happened in the last week that I hardly know where to begin. My DEN-L colleagues from the Gender Action Program (Musu, Esther and Wehaty) and I traveled two hours by bumpy Liberian road last Monday to Bain Garr village in Nimba County where we invited village and clan leaders and representatives from the region to attend a workshop focusing on gender awareness. All of the participants are from small, rural, poverty-stricken villages, and many are illiterate or have undergone very basic levels of primary education (especially the women—there were a few that couldn’t even write their own names). Many of the women could hardly speak English even though it is the country’s official language. This is so because English is taught in school so the women who are not educated (especially those of older generations) are accustomed to speaking Mano, the local dialect in Nimba County that is used in the home. (More …)

    • Vanessa 2:12 pm on June 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I am thankful there are people like you, who take action in order to make a difference! You are setting a fine example; however I miss you, so come back to us soon! These workshops sound fascinating! I am curious, is every workshop with a different set of participants? Or do they come to a set of workshops?
      My Love Conquers All,

      • Anna Casey 4:47 pm on June 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply


        Each workshop is about a week long (not including previous assessments and follow up surveys/interviews) and is done with new participants. However, I work with both DEN-L’s Gender Action Program and the Civic Action Program (the former is gender awareness and the latter is peacebuilding and good governance), so some participants come to separately themed workshops put on by both teams. We go around to various villages all over Liberia performing these workshops with the local leaders so we reach as many people as possible.

        Hope you’re doing well! My love conquers all!!!!!!!!

    • Sarah B. 3:21 pm on June 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Such a fascinating post, Anna! Thanks for keeping all of us back in the US informed and keep the posts coming!

    • priscilla tobey 11:51 pm on June 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Anna, That’s incredibly interesting! A few thoughts/questions come to mind. Who are the people who attended the workshop and how were they “chosen”. Also, I’ve done a fair amount of work in the area of domestic abuse in this country and have seen how perpetrators can talk a good line about changing but rarely do so as their issues run deep. Often women are abused more when they begin to speak up. Is that a possibilty there and what kind of follow up do you have to assess that? I agree totally with your last paragraph – I think success is reliant on the components you outline. I can’t tell you how proud I am of the work that you’re embarking on! Love you so much, Mom

      • Anna Casey 4:41 pm on June 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply


        You are right about the issues running deep. Domestic violence is deeply engrained in the culture here and sometimes when women start to challenge their situations the violence can increase. It’s impossible to change a cultural practice right away with a few workshops, but, to answer your first question, the participants are local leaders–youth leaders, clan leaders, village chiefs, school principals, local representatives, etc. We make sure women, men and youth are represented at each workshop. Our team travels to the location before the workshop to assess the community needs and to find appropriate participants to invite. We target leaders who have a lot of influence and reach within the community. We let everyone know about the laws that are there to protect them…so at least they’re enlightened about their rights should they decide to act. Like I said, it takes a long time to change a culture, but these workshops have proven to have lasting effects (yes, we do extensive follow up after each workshop) and the education that they provide is the first step in changing cultural practices.

    • David Casey 12:54 am on June 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      You’re doing extraordinary and life-changing work, Anna!!! Good for you!!!! And thanks for writing so thoughtfully and well about your experiences; you’re bringing all of us to Liberia with you, at least a little.


    • Marsilius Flumo 11:25 pm on July 8, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Dear Anna: I read your blog about the workshop you and others conducted in Nimba County, Liberia. I found your tone and language very painful and offensive. I belong to the Mahn or Mano tribe of Nimba County. Indeed there are anecdotal truths in your blog but, in general, it is an inaccurate portrayal of my people. I leave it at that and hope that you will contact me for a deeper conversation about your blog.
      Thank you,
      Marsilius Flumo
      Spokane, Washington

      • Anna Casey 5:10 pm on November 1, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Marsilius,

        I apologize for offending you, but I was only reporting what I saw and experienced in Liberia. The Liberian women and men themselves who I worked with will back up all of my statements. Believe me, I love Liberia and the beautiful culture there. I am not meaning to offend its people, but the statistics do not lie. Women face oppression there. Liberia is stuck in a cycle of poverty and I do believe there is hope but I think it will take stepping back from the situation and examining what is fueling this poverty to fix it. Again, I do not pretend to know everything about your country, but I am simply recounting my own experience…the conversations I had with Liberians, the work I did, the things I saw and heard. My view is not the only one and you are entitled to your own opinion. Please contact me at anna.t.casey@gmail.com if you would like. I would be interested in hearing what you thought was “harsh” or inaccurate about my testimonies.


    • Chris 8:57 pm on October 30, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      You are going too far when you are talking like that about liberians my sister.
      Your point of view is coming from the west, difficult for you to “understand” liberia.
      People have their own opinion, maybe it’s good, maybe it’s bad, it’s not my business and realy Not your own. Do you know about war? so young you are.
      The country coming up after a decade of war and the peace is fragile.
      Don’t bring another problem into the liberian society.
      Of course there is problems, but, for me, women have a big place in liberian society actually.
      Look at our president or our ministers and others…

      • Anna 5:01 pm on November 1, 2010 Permalink | Reply


        I am not pretending to understand Liberia or the war there at all. I am only reporting that which I saw, experienced and heard from Liberians themselves while I was there. What you read in my blog all happened. I am not denying the fact that Liberia is a fragile country…I know it is fragile and I say this throughout the blog. Just because you have a female President and female ministers doesn’t mean that women are all of a sudden being treated equally. I understand it will take time and that having a female President is a step in the right direction, but it is problematic for you and your country if you deny the oppression and discrimination that women are faced with. If you don’t believe me that it’s out there, read the statistical reports for yourself. Here is one that documents health stats: http://www.measuredhs.com/pubs/pdf/FR201/FR201.pdf. You can find more stats on education and other things on the World Bank’s WDI web site. You will see that domestic abuse, early marriage, young pregnancy, educational deprivation and economic deprivation are REAL issues that Liberian women face.

        I am not trying to impose a Western view. In fact, all I did was go to Liberia to listen and learn from Liberians themselves. My blog includes that which I learned from working with Liberians for three months. I don’t pretend to know the society in and out from such a short period, but the Liberians I worked with at DEN-L and in many of the villages across Liberia will support that which I reported in my blog. It is only when Liberians can accept that there is inequality in their society that they can do something to change it. I wish you and your beautiful country the best.

      • Anna Casey 5:16 pm on November 1, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Also, I am wondering whether you read any of my other posts or whether that was the only one? I wrote 10 in total.

        • Chris 7:17 pm on November 14, 2010 Permalink

          Sorry Anna, you’re right! You are doing a huge job there and i thank you for it.
          I’m 100% percent with you but give them time to change please. Myself i’m trying to make the people around me to change, it’s a long time story…
          God bless you.

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