The Seimas Ombudsman welcomed the participants of the programme "Volunteering in the field of human rights."

15 June 2017

IMG 0117Augustinas Normantas, Head of the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office, handed certificates to the students who have successfully completed the programme "Volunteering in the field of human rights" carried out by the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office.

A. Normantas expressed his hope that knowledge and experience acquired during participation in the programme will be useful not only in studies but also in life: "We need to remember that respect for human rights is one of the essential values of a democratic society; therefore, skills and competences acquired during the training will benefit in the future."

An educational programme was designed to develop young lawyers’ perception of the application of human rights standards in the penal system.  Applying practical and theoretical approach, the coordinators of the programme aimed to educate future lawyers by raising their awareness on human rights as well as broadening their knowledge about the United Nations and other human rights mechanisms.

Vytautas Valentinavičius, Chief Public Relations Counsellor of the Seimas Ombudsmen's Office and coordinator of the programme was happy to note that the initiative was successful and produced positive results.

"In the course of fifty hours volunteering programme the students performed practical and theoretical tasks, visited a prison and learned to monitor and assess human rights violations in places of deprivation of liberty" – noted Mr Valentinavičius.

In the opinion of Mr Valentinavičius, it was important that the students were active and curious, interested in how Lithuanian penal system operates: “They participated in discussions on human rights, analysed international human rights standards and compared correctional systems in other countries."

The Seimas Ombudsmen's Office has become an accredited national human rights institution, with one of the primary goals – to speak up for human rights and, in cooperation with the public, address the most burning human rights issues, raise awareness of the society and younger generation about fundamental rights.