Amnesty International at GCC

The death penalty. Abortion. Human trafficking and sex slavery. World hunger. Racism. Guantanamo Bay.

Do any of these topics get you thinking? Do they strike a passion in you one way or the other? Do you want to do something about it?

Yes? Well, join Amnesty International at Glendale Community College. While this club supports human rights, they welcome ideas and opinions in any direction on these and other topics.

Worldwide, Amnesty International has over 3 million members in more than 150 countries and territories. The organization started about 50 years ago and as a whole they have successfully worked to release more than 40,000 prisoners who were unjustly incarcerated. AI advocates for human rights reforms at the United Nations, US Congress and capitals around the world and is support by many popular artists and musicians such as Rage Against the Machine, 10 Years, Sting, U2 and others.

Here at GCC, the club has about a dozen active members and partners with other clubs such as Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan (M.E.Ch.A) and Associated Student Government (ASG) to get their work done.

No matter what program of study you are pursuing, the only requirement to join this club is having a passion for human rights and wanting to pursue those ideas.

How much time is involved?
Meetings are from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Wednesdays in Library room 139. If you have class during any part of that time, you are welcome to attend only part of the meetings.

Will I be obligated to pay for anything?
It is completely free to be a member of AI at GCC. If you’d like to become a member of the official Amnesty International world organization, they require a one time donation of at least $35 or you can donate on a monthly basis. You have the opportunity to attend the Amnesty International Western Regional Conference and the Annual General Meeting, which do have a cost associated with them. These costs are often partially covered by ASG or AIUSA though.

What types of activities does the GCC AI club hold?
Annual banned books reading, film screenings and festivals, guest speakers and public actions are all just a small part of the annual line-up.

How will this look on a resume?
Great! AI gives you a great opportunity to develop leadership skills and show your commitment to a cause you’re passionate about. You’ll also have the opportunity to network with important community leaders such as politicians, members of the Phoenix Vice Squad and attorneys. The networking you’ll gain through being an AI member could even turn into a job opportunity.

Can I just show up?
No problem! The Amnesty International club will make you feel welcome on your first visit. They may ask you what issues you feel most strongly about and what you’d like to see happen in the club.

What is a typical meeting like?
The first half hour of each meeting is devoted to human rights advocacy. Members will make phone calls, write letters, send emails, etc. to people who have decision making power over the events they want to see changed. Then they will discuss club happenings such as their expenditures and current events. Finally they open the meeting up for human rights discussions. You can talk about current concerns or bring new concerns to the table.

Where can I go for even more information?
Amnesty International at GCC is on www.facebook.com/aigcc or Twitter @aigcc. You can also email ai@gcmail.maricopa.edu. To learn about Amnesty International on a global level, visit http://www.amnesty.org or nationally at www.amnestyusa.org.

Thank you very much to Amnesty International GCC Club Vice President, Michael Rosin, for helping to write this “Club Friday’s” post.

Is Amnesty International not the club for you? Maybe you should check out Green Efforts or the Arizona Business and Leadership Club.

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