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Defenders for Human Rights
Remzi Cej

Remzi Cej Displacement to Activism

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GRADE LEVELS = 7 to 12  /  SUGGESTED TIME = Three 60 minute class periods

How to use this lesson

Global and Canadian Defenders for human rights have changed societal conditions and provide inspiration for students. The overall goal of Speak Truth to Power Canada is to raise student awareness that advances in human rights come through the actions of individuals.

In this lesson plan on Displacement to Activism you will find:

  • An interview with Remzi Cej including his biography.
  • Student activities that support the theme of this lesson, including activities related to Remzi Cej’s lived experience and his philosophy of bridging adversity, national and international humanitarian aid organizations, and United Nations human rights refugee camps.
  • Three brief community defender profiles are provided to expand the lesson and encourage students to identify with a variety of defenders for human rights.

To support the lesson on Displacement to Activism, you will also find:

  • Sections or articles of selected legal instruments that are tied to the theme of Displacement to Activism.
  • A student activity that links the Moments in Time timeline of advancements and setbacks in human rights from a Canadian perspective.

You can, of course, choose to use any or all of the suggested student activities.

Learning Targets

During this lesson students will:

  • Be aware of the Yugoslavian conflicts of 1990-2007.
  • Be inspired to become active in promoting human rights.
  • Develop empathy for those displaced by conflict.
  • Recognize obligations towards others – individually and collectively.

Skills Development

After this lesson students will have improved the following skills:

  • Adding meaningful argument to a group discussion
  • Researching, organizing and interpreting information
  • Making inferences and drawing conclusions
  • Respecting opposing points of view
  • Writing a poem
  • Implementing advocacy activities
  • Creating a visual representation

Guiding Questions

  1. As human beings are we morally obligated to help others?
  2. As a collective, does Canada have a moral obligation to aid those in need? Explain your reasons for your position.
  3. What should Canada’s focus be in foreign aid?
  4. Who wins in war? Who loses in war?


Opportunities and issues related to human rights are integrated throughout the curriculum. This lesson plan suggests student activities that will match curriculum expectations in Language, Social Sciences, Health, Art as well as Health and Wellness, Citizenship, Law, and Technology.


Depending on the activities chosen it may be necessary to have access to a television, the Internet, computers, and/or films (on DVD or streamed) in addition to presentation materials to support individual and group presentations.

Legal Instruments

Speak Truth to Power Canada highlights legal instruments in their simplified forms, which relate to the themes addressed in the 12 lesson plans. Selected articles and sections of these legal instruments are offered in this lesson plan to complement the discussion and the research.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

  • Article 1: Right to equality
  • Article 2: Freedom from discrimination
  • Article 3: Right to life, liberty and personal security
  • Article 5: Freedom from torture and degrading treatment
  • Article 6: Right to recognition everywhere as a person before the law
  • Article 7: Right to equality before the law
  • Article 8: Right to remedy by competent tribunal
  • Article 13: Right to free movement in and out of the country
  • Article 15: Right to a nationality and the freedom to change it

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

  • Fundamental Freedoms
  • Democratic Rights
  • Mobility Rights
  • Legal Rights
  • Equality Rights
  • Enforcing the Charter

United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

  • Article 2: Protection from discrimination
  • Article 7: Right to Life, Liberty and security
  • Article 8: Assimilation or destruction of culture
  • Article 10: Forceful removal and relocation