Human Rights Day is observed every year on 10 December. It commemorates the day on which, in 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It seems we still have a long way to go. Human rights are being disregarded and abused in every country, so maybe this makes it even more important to stand up and remind the world of how it should be.
Yesterday Unicef had organised a solidarity event in various cities in Switzerland, including Bern. The idea was that people would form a human chain to show solidarity with refugee children and span a bridge in Bern. The bridge was decorated with blue balloons, but unfortunately there were not a lot of people came. Apparently 1200 in the whole of Switzerland. We did not even span half of the bridge. I was there, but it was a bit of a disappointment, and probably more so for the organisers. That said, it had not been well advertised, and even though I registered, there was no reminder email on the day, so maybe there are some lessons to be learned for next time. The weather was fantastic in any case as you can see in the photo above taken against the backdrop of Bern Minster.
In the evening yesterday there was also an event from Caritas to show solidarity with the poorest. This was billed as a million candles, and each one was lit and set on the parliament square. People could buy a candle and make a wish. Very pretty and also very moving. I went along and took a look on the way to supper with my daughter before going to see an English language Panto. This was put on by the English speaking amateur dramatics group in Bern called The Caretakers. They are mainly from the University and various colleges in Bern, and the standard of the acting was fantastic. The Panto was based on Sleeping Beauty, with brilliant casting and costumes as well as a small orchestra. The audience was instructed in advance what amount of participation was expected, as Swiss audiences generally do not know what a Pantomime is. So there was lots of booing, hissing and oh not it’s not 🙂 It really was an excellent night, and I hope they do another one next year.