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The Oxford Human Rights Festival is a student-led festival hosted by the Centre for Development and Emergency Practice at Oxford Brookes University.

Over the past 20 years this festival has used its platform to shed light on the importance of Human Rights through engaging programmes consisting of films, performances, talks, exhibitions and more. 

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About Us

About the Oxford Human Rights Festival

At the Oxford Human Rights Festival, our aim is to raise awareness of human rights issues through delivering engaging programmes including film screenings, performances, talks, workshops, exhibitions and more! 

Founded in 2003, the Festival was initiated by postgraduates and staff at the Centre of Development and Emergency Practice (CENDEP), school of Architecture at Oxford Brookes University, Oxford UK. The festival is still hosted by CENDEP to this day. The festival is planned and delivered by the organising committee, often in partnership with a range of collaborators. The organising committee is open to all undergraduates, postgraduates, staff and academics, as well as anyone from the city of Oxford. We enjoy collaborating with the public including local community groups, educational institutes, NGOs/INGOs, organisations and individuals. 

Every year the student-led committee choose a theme, around which the festival's programme is created. In the past themes have included 'Resilience', 'Identity', 'Home', 'Movement' and 'NOW WHAT?'. These themes provide a starting point to  consider what these concepts mean, not only in terms of Human Rights, but also in terms of gender, sexuality, race, ability, class, wealth, religious beliefs, forced migration, homelessness, nationality and much more.
Past events have included a talk by peace builder and founder of Oxford Research Group Scilla Elworth in 2019, Ken Loach opening the 2017 festival with a screening of his acclaimed film 'I, Daniel Blake' and Ziauddin Yousafzai, father of equal education activist Malala Yousafzai, speaking at our screening of their film 'He Named Me Malala' in 2016. Each year we curate an exhibition every year around the theme of the festival and includes artists and performers from around the globe.  

We receive a small bursary for the Festival from Oxford Brookes University Faculty of Technology, Design and Environment (TDE).  We rely on voluntary contribution from the planning committee, students, staff and friends to plan and deliver the festival. We welcome grants and donations as we often need external sponsorship to supplement the Festival bursary.




The festival takes place primarily on campus at Oxford Brookes University, Gipsy Lane, Headington, Oxford OX3 0BP and across the city of Oxford. 

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