African Humanitarian Honored with Human Rights Award

Paris, France
12 July 2006

The Paris chapter of Youth for Human Rights International presented Mr. Yeka Futy with the “Know Your Human Rights Hero Award,” a special honor given to caring adults who have made an impact in their areas through stellar human rights activities and the implementation of one or more of the Articles of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Known as “Papa Yeka,” Mr. Futy, who lives in Essonne, a suburb of Paris, is the President of a human rights organization called “Association Essonne au Coeur de l’Afrique” (ASSECA) (the Essonne Heart of Africa Association). He provides work to youth, senior citizens and the handicapped through shops he has opened in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in the city of Matadi, and in France.

Presenting this award, Quentin Michel, the spokesperson for Youth for Human Rights in France, said “Papa Yeka is a remarkable man whose work is a real example of courage and persistence. His constant fight to make human rights a reality deserves our deepest respect.”

Accepting the award, Mr. Futy said, “This is my reward for a year of hard work. I accept this on behalf of all the people who assisted on this project, without whom it would not have been possible to help the elderly and handicapped of Matadi.”

“Around the world, human rights violations are a daily occurrence,” said Michel. “We believe that implementing human rights education in all schools can change this. L. Ron Hubbard once said, ‘Human Rights must be made a fact, not an idealistic dream.’ By empowering youth with knowledge of their own and others’ rights we can mobilize an entire generation to accomplish this goal.”

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