January 16, 2016

Human Rights and Peace

Welcome to SCORP!

The Standing Committee on Human Rights and Peace unites students who strive to create an equal and peaceful world, and believe in international, intercultural as well as interpersonal solidarity. We believe in everybodys responsibility as well as ability to contribute to creating this world, as human rights can only exist when it applies to all humans.

In 1983, the Standing Committee on Refugees was formed, aiming to call attention to the problems faced by the displaced population and participate in relief efforts. The committee members soon realised that these efforts were merely palliative, whereas a sustainable solution would have to address the root of the problem – violence, conflicts and human rights violations. In 1995, the committee changed name to Standing Committee on Refugees and Peace, and finally in 2005 it became the SCORP that we know today, Standing Committee on Human Rights and Peace.

SCORP has a vision of world where the all individuals are entitled full and equal access to their human rights, where no one is left alone in a disaster and where the entire society, including medical students and health workers, unite to help the most vulnerable people.

The mission of SCORP is to empower and motivate medical students to actively promote and protect human rights and peace, and to introduce the members to different forms of humanitarian action through capacity building, field project opportunities and cooperation with external organizations.


  1. Enhance students knowledge on human rights, peace building, humanitarian response, international humanitarian law and violations of human rights;
  2. Provide medical students with tools and skills to act according to Human Rights and ethics both in clinical settings and in everyday life;
  3. Support and create activities, such as campaigns, capacity building and advocacy, aiming to fulfill the vision of the standing committee;
  4. Facilitate the Federations policy development on areas related to human rights and peace;
  5. Provide members with the opportunity to advocate for implementation of policies through inclusion in national and international laws and frameworks;
  6. Collaborate with relevant partners in the implementation of objectives related to human rights and peace.

Core Concepts

Human Rights: We primarily refer to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from 1948 when we talk about human rights without further specification, however, sometimes other international covenants and treaties are also mentioned.

Peace: SCORP understands peace as both the absence of conflict (negative peace), and the presence of equality and harmony (positive peace).

Main Topics
Human rights cover a wide range of topics, not the least the right to health, which can be addressed in a variety of ways. SCORP members all over the world conduct activities in many different areas, here we are only naming a few:

  • Refugees: In spite of our name change, the work to support refugees and other displaced persons remain a priority within SCORP. In 2014, there were 59 million displaced persons globally, and they face no less challenges than 30 years ago.
  • Human Rights and Ethics: All of our activities are founded on the Human Rights, but we also try to teach these to other people – children, medical students, general public – as well as to incorporate them in Medical Education and our profession.
  • Disasters: When a disaster strikes, may it be man-made or natural, the affected population tend to become deprived of basic human rights such as food, water and shelter. This causes suffering that can be alleviated and in some cases prevented.
  • Vulnerable Populations: Apart from refugees, we often address for example children, elderly people, people with mental or physical impairments, homeless people and others who often face discrimination, negligence or maltreatment.

Examples of recent achievements

Human Rights Trainers: In 2013, the first SCORP Camp, a summer training camp on SCORP issues, was held in Slovakia. In 2014 the Camp was hosted in Jordan, and in 2015 it is Swedens turn. Thanks to these camps, in addition to a number of other international, regional and national workshops, IFMSA now has about 150 Human Rights Trainers spread over the 5 regions.

Migrants Rights: Apart from the projects on a local level, regional and international initiatives have been taken. 20 European NMOs made a statement (found here) on the disaster on the Mediterranean, and a campaign has been created to celebrate World Refugee Day (20th of June).

Disaster Risk Management & Humanitarian Actions: IFMSA hosted four three days training during the year 2014 – 2015 on Disaster Risk Management (DRM) and Humanitarian Response, which have resulted in extensive mobilisation and recruitment of medical students to be involved in the topic. A curriculum of a seven mount training on DRM and Humanitarian Actions is development and a recruitment of participants to this comprehensive training is launched. IFMSA were also coordinating children and youth within the Post-2015 Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction process, with worldwide capacity building of youth in DRR and inclusion of youth and medical student in the outcome of this UN process; the Sendai Framework for Action. Disaster Medicine research is now also ongoing.

Health Care in Danger: IFMSA have developed a collaboration with ICRC Health Care in Danger project, where IFMSA is training medical students on the ethical dilemmas of medical workers in disaster settings. Three trainings have been taking place at this point; one global in Sweden, one in EMR region and one global in Turkey.

World Humanitarian Summit Taskforce: IFMSA is currently leading a taskforce for the World Humanitarian Summit, which has the main mandate to enhance the voice and capacity of the youth. More information about the Taskforce and its work can be found here.