The Curriculum

The Speak Truth To Power curriculum, based on the UN’s principles of human rights education, is taught to millions of students around the world. Using the stories of human rights defenders in an innovative, flexible manner, Speak Truth To Power’s lessons are designed to fit any subject, teaching students that they, too, can learn to self-identify as a human rights defender and  have a role to play in the global fight for justice.

The Book

Speak Truth To Power evolved from Kerry Kennedy’s book Speak Truth to Power: Human Rights Defenders Who Are Changing Our World, now printed in seven languages.  Featuring interviews with more than 50 human rights defenders--“heroes every one,” in Nelson Mandela’s words--the book is a remarkable tribute to the human spirit.  

The Photo Exhibition

The book includes portraits by Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Eddie Adams, which have been developed into a stirring photo exhibition. The exhibition  began its international tour at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C. and has since traveled to four continents, reaching countries such as Greece, Italy, Qatar, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, South Korea and South Africa

The Play

Award-winning playwright Ariel Dorfman adapted the interviews from the book into a play, Speak Truth To Power: Voices From Beyond the Dark, which has been performed around the globe by some of the world’s most talented actors, including Martin Sheen, Sean Penn, Meryl Streep, Harry Belafonte, and Vanessa Redgrave.


Partnering with the GRAMMY Museum and Tribeca Film Institute, our Music and Video contests encourage students to engage in human rights through songwriting and filmmaking.


Regions Where We Address Speak Truth to Power

  • Americas

    From continuing Robert Kennedy's efforts with American farmworkers to working to end violence against women in Latin America, our programs in the Americas seek to protect the vulnerable, end corruption, and ensure respect for the dignity of each person throughout the region.

  • Asia

    Supporting Nobel laureates in their quests to end child labor and empower the impoverished. Bringing human rights education to the foothills of Nepal. Standing with civil society in Bangladesh. Our work in Asia carries us far afield as we fulfill our pledge to stand with the bravest people on Earth, wherever they are. 

  • Africa

    Our work in Africa is as diverse as the continent itself. We fight for LGBT rights in Uganda, advocate for civil society in Swaziland, Zimbabwe, and The Gambia, and help bring lifesaving technology to Kenya.

  • Europe

    Headquartered in a prison that has been transformed into a beacon of freedom, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Europe works with experts, advocates, and teachers to promote freedom and justice across the continent and beyond.