Ingrid Graves (Washington, DC)
“Sometimes we have forgotten our humanity. We have forgotten the most vulnerable. We must remember to always honor our humanity. We have a responsibility to always work for those who are the most vulnerable,” said Charito Kruvant, CEO, as she received the Perdita Huston Human Rights Award from the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area. Since Creative’s beginning, Charito has advocated for us to think globally and act locally in communities worldwide. To put this concept into the context of human rights, we are each part of the human family and thus play a role in the implementation of the principles from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Creative has gained an intimate perspective into how communities develop and uphold human rights from the field.
Throughout her career, Charito has advocated for women and girls and the vital impact they have in their community. Recently, Charito met with three young women from the Washington, DC community who have shown distinct interest and initiative in development and the role human rights play. After meeting with Charito, Eliisa Carter and Elena Kervitsky, shared their insight with us.
Eliisa Carter, Youth Intern, Global Classrooms DC, UNA-NCA
It was a pleasure to meet Charito Kruvant. She is a powerful proponent and champion of spreading education throughout the world in order to help eradicate international conflict. As a true human rights leader, Charito’s work has inspired me to spread awareness among my peers about global issues and to uphold the necessity of an education that emphasizes democratic and equal values for women, men, and children that will help combat the widespread problems of repression and turmoil. What is even more inspiring to me on a personal level, is Charito’s support for the education program I involve myself in, Global Classrooms D.C., a program directed toward grade school students that enhances leadership, interpersonal, and research skills in order to provide resolutions to the world’s problems.
Central to the idea of Human Rights is the acknowledgement of every person’s right to life, expression, and equality. As the founder of my school’s Model U.N. Club, I discovered that many women, children, and men, who hold beliefs different from others, are obstructed and denied their human rights. Through the conflict resolution workshops the MUN Club has attended, we have focused on methods of combating the severe problems women and children endure in developing countries, such as early marriage and child labor. We have observed education as the main warrior that will eliminate obstacles standing in the way of people who’s human rights are violated by repressive societies.
Charito’s organization, Creative Associates International, is the epitome of an institution that works toward the betterment of the global society. It does so by providing and funding numerous educational programs in both developing and developed countries. Creative Associates inculcates the value of human rights globally. The international development that Charito implements inspires me, a student focused to promote global and human rights studies, to educate my peers about global issues, in hopes of creating a team of humanitarians that act toward the diffusion of education and making a more civil world.
Elena Kervitsky, Youth Intern, Global Classrooms DC, UNA-NCA
As one of the roughly 3.5 Billion women and girls on this planet, I know that I am fortunate to have been born in North America. Around the globe girls feature a genetic composition that is almost identical to that of my own, but there are vast differences between us all.
I have two working parents who support our family, where as some girls must forfeit their education just to make ends meet, and help feed and care for their family. I have a good education that is not in jeopardy, unlike some girls my age who are married off for a small price to help the family, or foster some perceived family honor.
Despite being illegal it is estimated that 25,000 girls are married every day, underage and against their will. For most this will mean that they won’t be able to continue their education or pursue their aspirations to be a doctor, teacher or scientist. This happens because of long held notions that girls in many countries aren’t entitled to rights. I personally experienced a bit of this while traveling in India a few years back.
With people and organizations focused on changing opinions and opportunities for the lives of others around the world perhaps these statistics can change. An illegal marriage prevented could yield an increase in dreams completed. Human rights exist because they are the humane thing to do. Everyone deserves a chance at greatness, a chance to finish school, and chance to marry who they want and when they want. People like Charito Kruvant who fight for human rights deserve a special place in our hearts for all that they do. They do in my heart.
Ingrid Graves, Writing Outreach Manager, Creative Associates International