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ACCEPTING BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS
Goal
  1. To develop confidence in one’s basic human rights.
  2. To increase awareness of how one denies one’s rights.

Group Size
Not more than thirty participants.

Time Required
One hour.

Materials
Newsprint, felt-tipped markers, and marking tape for the facilitator.

Process :

  1. The facilitator announces the goals of experience and asks the participants to brainstorm a list of basic rights, which the facilitator posts.
  2. The facilitator directs the participants to clarify, modify, delete or add to the rights list. This may include a discussion of any limitations on the rights or the responsibilities that accompany the rights.
  3. The facilitator directs participants to silently select one of the rights on the list that they feel most uncomfortable accepting.
  4. The facilitator gives the following instructions :
    "Move into a comfortable position ...close your eyes...takes a deep breath .. hold it as long as you can .. let it out slowly ..Now imagine that you have the right you selected from this list...Imagine how life would change as you accept this right ....How you would act ... How you would feel about yourself ...How you would feel about other people...."
    The fantasy continues for two minutes, after which the trainer says :
    "Now imagine that you no longer have the right ... Imagine how your life would change from what it was moments ago ...How would you now act ...and feel about yourself ...How would you feel about other people..."
    This fantasy continues for one minute. (Participants usually find it easier to imagine the right being taken away than to accept the right).
  5. The facilitator directs participants to form pairs and to discuss the following questions :
  1. What right did you select?
  2. Had you been denying it to yourself? In what way?
  3. How did you feel when you accepted the rights?
  4. How did you act differently when you had the right? When you no longer had the right?
  5. What did you learn about yourself during this activity?
  1. The facilitator conducts a general group discussion of findings from Step V.
  2. The facilitator leads the group in a discussion of what methods participants may have used to deny themselves their rights, what methods they used to help accept these rights, and how they can continue to use methods to increase the range of rights they readily accept for themselves.

To identify basic human rights :

  1. What are some of the basic things I believe people are entitled to because they are human beings?
  2. Is this something that can be given to all people : do I accord it to others?
  3. What rights are necessary to treat all fairly, with dignity, and as people with worth?
  4. What rights do people need to make their own decisions and live their own lives without violating the rights of other.
  5. What rights am I denying myself?

I have the right to :

  1. Be left alone.
  2. Be independent
  3. Be successful.
  4. Be listened to and taken seriously.
  5. Get what I pay for.
  6. Have right i.e. to act in an assertive manner.
  7. Refuse requests without feeling guilty or selfish.
  8. Ask for what I want.
  9. Make mistakes and to be responsible for them.
  10. Choose not to assert myself.
 


© 2000 Dennice is solely responsible for the opinions expressed 

 

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