The Sphere Handbook in Action – free e-learning course

The Sphere Handbook in Action e-learning course
Sphere Project

The Sphere Handbook in Action e-learning course aims to strengthen the effective use of the Sphere Handbook, Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response. It brings the Sphere Handbook to life through the use of realistic scenarios, helping the learner to get acquainted with its core messages and to understand how to use the Handbook holistically.Taking the course is free of charge. No academic qualifications are required. Each person may take the course at her or his own pace.

Available in English, Arabic, French & Spanish.
Watch a 90-second trailer, and access the course on the Sphere website.

New Sphere E-Learning Course

New Sphere E-Learning Course Launched
Sphere Project

The new Sphere e-learning course is now available online! It allows humanitarian workers to learn more about the Sphere standards at their own pace and on their own time.

The use of realistic scenarios enables the participant to better understand the Sphere Handbook and its practical application on the ground. Among other topics, the course covers accountability to affected populations, needs assessments, response coordination, impartiality and non-discrimination, keeping populations safe from harm, “building back safer” and looking after oneself as a humanitarian worker.

Find out more here

TRAINING: Managing Gender-Based Violence Programmes in Emergencies: E-Learning Companion Guide

I have been working in Tanzania and some of the reports of gender based violence are really quite unbelievable. Girls  may be married early, be abused and end up pregnant  and leaving school, be caned for arriving late at school and the list goes on.

This free e-learning course supports our work when managing gender based violence programmes -particularly in emergencies.

This is brought to our attention through the INEE newsletter

TRAINING: Managing Gender-Based Violence Programmes in Emergencies: E-Learning Companion Guide.


UNFPA has launched a companion guide to its free e-learning course for professionals who are working to address Gender Based Violence in humanitarian contexts.


The e-learning course uses problems that practitioners currently face and case scenarios from real-life humanitarian contexts to guide learning. Integrated throughout the modules are videos, learning activities and quizzes that both engage the learner, and support participants’ varying learning styles. The new companion guide not only covers all of the content in the e-learning, but also provides new case studies, sample tools, best practices, and activities.


For more information, click here


New Training Module – Human Rights and Accountability

Education in Emergencies used to be the forgotten dimension in emergency work as the immediate reaction was to deal with more structural dimensions of an emergency such as health,  food , water and shelter. The work of INEE has changed all that and provided emergency teams with a comprehensive package of guidance ,developed by practitioners in the field.

INEE and the Global Education Cluster have added a new training module on Human Rights and Accountability to the Education in Emergencies harmonized training package.


The Human Rights and Accountability Training Module complements the rest of the training package by creating awareness around human rights and serving as a tool to achieve quality education and a life of dignity. The module includes a Powerpoint presentation, handouts, interactive dialogue sections and exercises to guide participants through the various steps of using Human Rights in their education work. Learning points include good practices to support rights-holders, as well as how to identify key duty-bearers and lines of accountability available to affected populations and education actors.


The module was developed for INEE and the IASC Education Cluster by Peter Hyll-Larsen andActionAid International – The Right to Education Project, in consultation with members of the Education Cluster Working Group and the INEE Working Group on Minimum Standards and INEE Tools. The Right to Education Project aims to promote social mobilisation and legal accountability by focusing on the legal challenges to the right to education.


Explore the Education in Emergencies Training Package!

The package contains the following 14 modules with presentations, facilitators’ guides and exercises, available on the INEE Toolkit. Modules on Youth, Gender and Inclusive Education are currently under development.

0.    Guidance and Time Tabling

1.    The Rationale for Education in Emergencies

2.    INEE Minimum Standards Framework

3.    Technical Components for Education in Emergencies

4.    Education in Emergencies Coordination

5.    Action Planning and Follow-Up

6.    Assessment

7.    Programme Design, Monitoring and Evaluation

8.    Links Between Education and Other Sectors

9.    Contingency Planning

10.  Early Recovery and Transition

11.  Advocacy and Policy

12.  Risk Reduction

13.  Teaching and Learning

14.  Human Rights and Accountability



E-learning Module on the INEE Minimum Standards: Learn more about the INEE Minimum Standards through the INEE e-learning module. The module employes a variety of resources and methods and uses the Darfur refugee crisis as an example to demonstrate how the INEE Minimum Standards can be used as a framework for designing quality education programmes in conflict-induced situations.


Training Adaptations: The Education in Emergencies Training Package has already been used in many contexts, and the training materials have been adapted to suit the context and participants’ needs for each training. The training adaptations are available on the INEE website. If you wish to share your training agenda and supporting materials, please contact


For more information and questions on the Education in Emergencies Training Package and capacity development initiatives of INEE and the Education Cluster, please and


Human Rights Education – Crimes of War

Demobilised Child Soldiers DRC. Time


We have a duty to build capacity in people so that they know what their basic human rights are, how to find support for protection of these rights and to understand how they can take action to protect other people’s human rights.


Check out UNICEF’s Voice of Youth site for more information about children’s rights.

twogirls unicef
Unicef -Sudan


Instead of heeding lessons of the past, we seem to be reading more and more in the news about child soldiers, sexual violence being perpetrated as a weapon of war, civilians being injured, tortured, killed as a way of ‘undermining governments’ policies’ and as a general threat to innocent civilians. This is also in the context of a wide availability of more sophisticated weapons in the poorest of countries and a general plundering of natural resources , particularly minerals such as diamonds leading to a wider range of conflicts.




The next generation will already be receiving this situation, handed down by their parents -education of the next two generations is necessary to get a real change in attitudes and behaviour and and for all children , no matter where they live, have their basic rights protected and enforced.


The text below comes from  the HREA Quarterly Newsletter (  July-September 2009)

The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE/ODIHR), the Council of Europe, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) have jointly published Human Rights Education in the School Systems of Europe, Central Asia and North America: A Compendium of Good Practice. HREA was retained to develop the Compendium under the guidance of these partners.


Designed for primary and secondary schools, teacher training institutions and other learning settings, the new tool, which collects 101 exemplary practices from Central Asia, Europe and North America, is a valuable resource for teachers and education policymakers.

It provides resource materials relevant to key elements for successful human rights education, including 1) laws, guidelines and standards; 2) learning environment; 3) teaching and learning tools; 4) professional development for educators, and 5) evaluation.

The collection demonstrates creative approaches to human rights education and aims to facilitate networking and exchange of experience among education professionals. The practices can be adapted to local conditions anywhere in the world.

Below is an example of a good practice included in the Compendium:

Crimes of War – What the Public Should Know: Educator’s Guide


Intended Audience: Upper secondary school and university students (ages 16-22) and their teachers.

: The Educator’s Guide was developed to make the reality of war crimes more accessible to youth, young adults and future decision makers in a classroom learning environment.

The assumption is that if students and their teachers know the depth of the horrors of war – the same wars that are often described in mainstream media as “precise”, “modern”, or “just” – they would take a more active role in deciding when, where and why to go to war, and in influencing the way those wars are fought.

Description: The Educator’s Guide accompanies the second edition of Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know, composed of case studies written by prominent field journalists. The Educator’s Guide was developed in co-operation with the Crimes of War Project (publisher of the second edition) and the United States Institute of Peace.

In the Educator’s Guide, there are eight thematic chapters: weapons, violence against civilians, child soldiers, sexual violence, terrorism and torture, genocide, international courts and tribunals, and humanitarian intervention. Each of the thematic chapters is linked to case studies contained in the second edition of Crimes of War, as well as United States national education standards. The chapters include the following elements:
• an essential question;
• learning objectives;
• methodology;
• background information on the theme;
• discussion questions (organized from simplest to most complex);
• extension activities (that can be used for additional class work or homework);
• ways that learners can take action; and
• additional film, Web and print resources for the classroom.

In addition to thematic, case study chapters, the Educator’s Guide contains a Glossary of Terms and a “Background and Key Concepts” section that presents the history of international humanitarian law and key concepts of the Geneva Conventions and its Additional Protocols.

UGANDA Artwork 01AI
Child Soldiers.Uganda.Amnesty International

In order to strengthen students’ sense that they can do something positive in addressing crimes of war, each chapter provides an “action” section with practical activities, such as participating in awareness raising and action campaigns. Furthermore, two of the chapters address justice mechanisms for addressing crimes of war: courts and humanitarian intervention.


Strengths: The Educator’s Guide supports educators in addressing the themes of crimes of war and international humanitarian law, which are rarely addressed in school settings. While making use of journalistic case studies to engage students, the lessons also provide historical and technical backgrounds necessary for understanding the themes.

The resource is designed for flexible use by teachers. For each thematic issue, educators can choose from a range of related case studies in the second edition of Crimes of War. The discussion questions are organised from simplest to most complex thinking so that those most suitable for the students can be selected. The reference section of each chapter links teachers with original sources and multi-media tools that can be used to enhance the lesson.

drawing 09 (3 fighters & cut hand)AI
Child Soldiers.Uganda. Amnesty International

Adaptability: The Educator’s Guide is intended for use in cross-national settings and was written to be culturally nonspecific, with regional examples from Europe, Africa and Asia. The second edition of Crimes of War is available in English and Arabic, and a French edition, as well as additional translations, are forthcoming.

Availability: The Educator’s Guide can be downloaded at Two sample chapters, “Weapons” and “Violence Against Civilians: Sieges and Sanctions”, are included in the Compendium Annex. The main text, Crimes of War: What the Public Should Know (second edition), can be found on-line in English and Arabic at


E-learning  – online capacity building


HREA is offering fourteen e-learning courses in the first trimester of 2010 (1 February-20 April), including courses on child rights programming, gender mainstreaming, human rights-based programming, human rights litigation, human rights of migrants and migrant workers, introduction to human rights education, monitoring children’s rights (in French), national human rights institutions, and the UN Human Rights Council. Find out more about these and other upcoming e-learning opportunities.