is an international nonprofit organization that trains and equips people to use video in their fight for human rights.
By bringing often unseen images and seldom heard stories to the attention of key decision makers, the media, and the public–WITNESS catalyzes grassroots activism, political engagement, and lasting change. We bridge the worlds of human rights, media and technology by incorporating cutting-edge innovations into traditional approaches to advocacy.
WITNESS’ unique contribution to the human rights community is to serve as a global authority on best practices in the use of video for human rights purposes and a frontline resource for training and expertise.
WITNESS has partnered with more than 300 human rights groups in over 80 countries, trained over 3,000 human rights defenders, developed widely-used training materials and tools, created the first dedicated online platform for human rights media (the HUB
), and supported the inclusion of video in over 100 campaigns, increasing their visibility and impact globally. WITNESS engages millions of ordinary citizens in the struggles for human rights taking place every day all over the world.
In 1992, not long after video of Rodney King being assaulted by four Los Angeles police officers catalyzed interest in the use of video for concrete human rights change, WITNESS was born. Today, WITNESS is an independent nonprofit organization with offices in Brooklyn, New York, and human rights partners based around the world.