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International Human Rights Training Program

Held in Montreal, Canada every June, the IHRTP is a world leading program on human rights education

The 41st edition of the IHRTP has been postponed to June 2022

The COVID-19 pandemic has inevitably interrupted Equitas‘ regular activities and, as a result, the 41st edition of the International Human Rights Training Program (IHRTP), which was scheduled to take place in June 2020, will been postponed to June 2022, if conditions allow it. This training will be held at John Abbott College in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, near Montreal, Canada, and will last three full weeks. 

Equitas considered several scenarios, taking into account the different constraints and realities related not only to the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic, but also the logistical implications of holding an event such as the IHRTP in this context, to come to this difficult decision.   

As a result, the results of the selection process conducted for the 2020 IHRTP will now apply to the 2022 IHRTP. This also means that no call for applications will be held in the fall of 2021, since the selection process has already been completed. The next program for which it will be possible to submit an application is June 2023: the call for applications should be launched in October 2022.   

We know that this announcement will be disappointing for many individuals who were planning to apply for IHRTP in 2021. If you wish to be added to our mailing list to receive the call for applications for the 2023 IHRTP, please send us an email at pifdh-ihrtp@equitas.org 

Human rights education continues!  

Although it is not possible to participate in the International Human Rights Training Program this year, please note that Equitas offers a free online course Put the World to Rights which is available to all in English, French, and Arabic. 

Our teams are also working on the development of a new training program that will be offered entirely online, with the first pilot edition taking place in the fall of 2021. The details and modalities of this new program will be announced shortly.  

“ For the past 40 years, Equitas’ International Human Rights Training Program has helped to create one of the largest international communities of human rights leaders. This network of over 4,300 human rights defenders were trained here in Montreal, and are playing critical roles in making their countries better places to live for the most vulnerable and marginalized.”
– Ian Hamilton, Equitas Executive Director (2004-2020)

Equitas celebrates 40 years of empowerment through human rights education

The International Human Rights Training Program (IHRTP) is an internationally recognized intensive three-week training program.

It is the only training in the world specifically dedicated to building the capacity and skills of human rights educators.

The program is a unique opportunity for human rights educators to acquire practical tools to improve the effectiveness and impact of their work while deepening their understanding of human rights.

Who may apply?

The program is for human rights educators from civil society organizations, regional and national institutions and government agencies.

Registration fees

As an indication, for the 2020 edition, the tuition fee was $ 6310 CAD. 

This covers:
• Training costs
• Accommodation and meals
• Program materials
• Emergency medical insurance

International air transportation and Canadian visa fees are not included. 

** Full and partial scholarships may be available **

6 reasons why you should apply

1. Innovative approach

The Program is an immersion into the participatory approach. The participants are at the heart of the process. They analyze their work and create new strategies for action based on their own experience.

2. From education to action

During the training, the participants develop an individual plan, with the help of coaches, in order to put into practice their newly acquired knowledge and skills through activities (training, campaigns, evaluations, follow-up, etc.) within their organization and in their countries.

Equitas Human Rights Women's Rights
Equitas Human rights environment

3. Diversity

The varied professional backgrounds of the participants bring a great richness to the program. Every year, close to 100 participants from around 50 countries are accepted to the program based on their experience and commitment to the field of human rights. 

4. Professional development

In addition to the participatory approach, the program familiarizes participants with the human rights-based approach, the gender perspective and the systems approach. The participants acquire and develop tools for improving the effectiveness and the concrete impact of their work. The IHRTP helps participants transform their working methods by making them more inclusive and participatory.

5. Networking

The IHRTP is an opportunity for participants to meet other committed individuals who, like them, are leaders working for change in their communities. By taking part in the training, the participants become members of a community of practice allowing them to network with former participants and experts and to share tools and resources online.

6. Expertise and international recognition

Equitas has more than 50 years of experience in human rights education. The quality of our prize-winning work has been recognized in Canada and abroad. In addition to having trained several world leaders in human rights, Equitas has an ongoing working relationship with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Participants at the Equitas International Human Rights Training Program in the class, Montreal, Canada

Learn more


Read about the 2019 edition of the Program and some of its participants :

Equitas celebrates 40 years of empowerment through human rights education

Forty Years of Human Rights: Gender and Sexual Rights Past and Present

A brief history of the IHRTP

It’s Time: How Hadeel Abu Soufeh Became a Voice for People Living with Disabilities in Jordan

Paying it Forward: How Co-Facilitator Kasun Pathiraja Used his IHRTP Knowledge for Peace-Building and Social Change in Sri Lanka

Equality for All: How Julienne Dembele Sanon Fights for the Rights of Women in Burkina Faso

Courage and Resilience: Rosnida Sari uses education to promote religious openness in Indonesia


What previous participants thought of the experience

The IHRTP has expanded my knowledge and given me so much insight to a lot of things. I feel like a new person and I can hold my head up high with what I have learned. This is one of the very best trainings I have participated in.

– Participant from Nigeria


“Everyone who works in the field of human rights education should get this opportunity. This is a golden opportunity for us increasing knowledge and changing attitudes in positive ways.”

– Participant from Sri Lanka


“The IHRTP has enriched my knowledge and made me acquire new skills to apply at my work back home. The program is full of valuable techniques, lessons, methods, instruments and information. I am very happy that I was part of this amazing program.”

– Participant from Jordan


“The entire use of the participatory approach is probably one of the most important things I learned (apart from the UN systems and instruments!).” 

– Participant from the Philippines


Evaluation Report :

Read the Evaluation Report of the 2019 International Human Rights Training Program




First, consult the Frequently Asked Questions Page.

You can also contact us at pifdh-ihrtp@equitas.org

Our partners

This program is undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through Global Affairs Canada.