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Publication date: 18 October 2021

10 keys to effectively communicating human rights - Zip file of all 10 keys video files (145.72 MB)

Publication date: 11 October 2021

Revamped '10 keys to effectively communicating human rights' video file (15.5 MB)


Key 1 - Outline your Objectives

Be clear about what you want to achieve. 

Why is it crucial to outline your objectives?

  • Clear goals are the base of your strategy
  • Goals define audiences, channels and formats - not the other way round!
  • Reached goals are evidence of success

How can you outline your objectives?

  • Keep goals realistic - consider your resources and timeframe
  • Set Key Performance Indicators and target values to measure success
  • Share goals internally for a common understanding

Key 2 - Activate your Audiences

Listen and connect.

Why is it crucial to activate your audiences?

  • To understand what moves people
  • To find common ground
  • To build mutual trust

How can you activate your audiences?

  • Set clear target audiences for your messages
  • Listen to your audiences and use focus groups and analytics
  • Start with questions and ask for your audience's questions

Key 3 - Voice shared Values

Create common ground.

Why is it crucial to voice shared values?

  • Vaues are our guiding principles
  • Issues divide, but values unite
  • Shared values can engage and strengthen communities over time

How can you voice shared values?

  • Map your values and those of your audience
  • Identify common values that underpin human rights and equality
  • Appeal to the emotions and values of people's better selves

Key 4 - Create Coalitions

Build partnerships to extend your reach.

Why is it crucial to create coalitions?

  • To multiply your messages
  • To reach wider audiences
  • For broader and deeper understanding and empathy

How can you create coalitions?

  • Find common goals and mutual benefits with new partners
  • Link rights to trending topics
  • Nurture long-time allies - align and reshape outputs

Key 5 - Mobilise your Messengers

Bring in trusted voices to help spread your word.

Why is it crucial to mobilise your messengers?

  • To get new audiences to listen
  • To empower people to tell their stories
  • To make your messages more authentic

How can you mobilise your messengers?

  • Support them to use their own style
  • Match them to your main audience and goal
  • Invest in their well-being

Key 6 - Harness Hope

Inspire action through positive messaging.

Why is it crucial to harness hope?

  • Human rights are our hope for a better future
  • Enthusiasm and passion move us forward
  • Life can be hard. Show the light at the end of the tunnel!

How can you harness hope?

  • Be for and not against, focus on solutions, not problems
  • Emphasise your aim
  • Connect small steps to the big picture

Key 7 - Shape your Story

Use real-life examples to trigger emotions.

Why is it crucial to shape your story?

  • Stories bring a wider cause to life
  • They help us understand, empathise and engage
  • Triggering emotions can have a lasting impact

How can you shape your story?

  • Consider who your story will move
  • Describe a challenge, its heroes and solutions
  • Show how one person's struggle can help other

Key 8 - Pick your Platform

Adapt approach to chosen channel.

Why is it crucial to pick your platform?

  • Both substance and style matter
  • There is more than one way to get noticed
  • We are all fighting for limited attention

How can you pick your platform?

  • Gather data to see what works best
  • Develop different skills and products
  • Adapt your output to your audience

Key 9 - Lead through Language

Keep it simple and promote respect.

Why is it crucial to lead through language?

  • Words matter - they shape perceptions
  • To be respectful and accessible to all
  • To underline our shared humanity

How can you lead through language?

  • Use inclusive, simple and positive words
  • Ask for guidance if unsure about terms
  • Invest in translation - including 'cultural' translation

Key 10 - Tailor your Timing

Success is where preparation meets opportunity.

Why is it crucial to tailor your language?

  • Linking to topical events increases resonance
  • Knowing when to publish saves time and resources
  • Timely input can help you shape debates

How can you tailor your language?

  • Track news and social media for opportunities
  • Create content you can use repeatedly
  • Assess honestly - new is not always newsworthy

Revamped 10 keys to effectively communicating human rights

Speaking up for human rights has never been more important!

But how?

How to bring people together and cut through the noise?

International human rights organisations across Europe have joined forces with the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, united behind the '10 keys to effectively communicating human rights'.

If you're a human rights advocate or communicator, these are the keys for you and your team to work with.

Let's all do better when communicating human rights.