Realizing Rights was founded in 2002 by Mary Robinson, former President of Ireland (1990-1997) and former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997-2002). Our mission was to put human rights standards at the heart of global governance and policy-making and to ensure that the needs of the poorest and most vulnerable are addressed on the global stage. From 2002 to 2010, we worked with a range of partners on diverse projects and initiatives. We identified five critical global challenges to address:
Realizing Rights aimed to show how using the lens of climate justice, and incorporating principles and tools of human rights to guide policy and practical responses to climate change, is an essential aspect of climate change policy work at the global and national level. Ultimately, a justice and human rights framework can provide us with a compass to chart the course of climate change responses, and a set of tools that operate at all levels between and within nations.
Realizing Rights worked with the United Nations Global Compact, the UN Special Representative on Business and Human Rights, the Business Leaders Initiative on Human Rights and other efforts to put human rights squarely on the CR agenda.
Promoting the Decent Work agenda and greater job opportunities for the most disadvantaged was the raison d'etre of our partnerships with a range of organizations. Our partners will continue to carry out this important work in the years to come.
Realizing Rights focused on cultivating political leadership and developing new tools of accountability at all levels to ensure increased access to health care services, particularly in Africa. We promoted innovative policy actions in areas such as health workforce capacity, health financing, donor assistance for health and women's health.
Realizing Rights supported the Women Leaders Intercultural Forum and other endeavours that strengthen women's leadership. At all levels, this facilitated greater collective action to increase global security, and increase the participation of women in global policy forums.