2022 Middle School Art Challenge

We invite middle school students to create an original poster on the

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Drafted by representatives with different legal and cultural backgrounds from all regions of the world, the Declaration was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 1948 as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations. It sets out, for the first time, fundamental human rights to be universally protected and it has been translated into over 500 languages. The UDHR is widely recognized as having inspired, and paved the way for, the adoption of more than seventy human rights treaties, applied today on a permanent basis at global and regional levels (all containing references to it in their preambles).” (United Nations)

Students are encouraged to focus on the following specific articles of the declaration.

  • Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person. (Simplified version: We all have the right to life, and to live in freedom and safety.)
  • Article 5: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. (Simplified version: Nobody has any right to hurt us or to torture us.)
  • Article 9: No one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile. (Simplified version: Nobody has the right to put us in prison without good reason and keep us there, or to send us away from our country.)
  • Article 30: Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein. (Simplified version: No one can take away our human rights.)

The Declaration is available at https://www.un.org/en/about-us/universal-declaration-of-human-rights

The simplified version is available at https://www.youthforhumanrights.org/what-are-human-rights/universal-declaration-of-human-rights/articles-1-15.html

Grades: 5-8

Criteria: Work must be two-dimensional. You need to take a quality photo of your artwork under good lighting and minimal shadow.

Submissions: Submit your photo, the title for the art piece and a brief statement (1-3 sentences) describing the artwork’s message along with your consent at https://forms.gle/Ru1R8LGQwbWnQxys7

Timeline: The deadline for submissions is September 23rd, 2022.

Display & Awards: Finalists and winners will be selected based on juror’s choice. The awards are: $75 for first place, $50 for second place, and $25 for third place. In addition, there will be several honorable mentions.

Please email peacequestlansing@gmail.com with questions.