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Human Rights Documentation


About This Course

There are many paths to achieving the goals of a community that has been affected by human rights violations. Human rights documentation is a way of capturing, preserving, and sharing stories of human rights abuses to seek redress for the harm, hold perpetrators of abuse accountable and secure the collective memories of the past for the present and future. By using effective documentation, your community can take care of their narratives and pursue these goals.

In this Totem course on Human Rights Documentation you will learn about the common stages of a documentation effort, what important considerations you will need to think about along the way, and what can be achieved with community-led human rights documentation.

About Totem

Totem is an online platform that offers interactive courses to learn how to increase digital security and privacy. The optimal user experience is currently on your desktop computer. The aim is to support journalists, human rights defenders and activists use privacy tools and tactics more effectively in their work.

What will you learn?

In this course, you will:
  • Understand what human rights documentation is;
  • Learn about real-life examples of successful human rights documentation;
  • Learn how human rights documentation can support your community goals;
  • Be aware of key considerations for your human rights documentation initiative



Last update

This course was updated for the last time on: January 2024


The content was created with the help of experts, trainers and online education experts from several organizations who collaborated during a workshop to co-create this Totem course. The content team includes members from HURIDOCS, Witness and Horizontal.