FREEDOM CHALLENGE

You - our rangatahi - are today’s agents of change.

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Your voice is powerful.

Your knowledge is powerful.

Your existence is powerful.

We here at Amnesty International Aotearoa New Zealand want to support and equip you in your activism journey, so that you can use your power to seek meaningful change. To raise awareness, to inspire action, and to be beacons of hope.

That’s why we created the annual Freedom Challenge!

Freedom Challenge is a call to action for young people across Aotearoa New Zealand. It is an opportunity for rangatahi to apply their leadership, creativity, and visions for justice by standing together against a pressing human rights issue.

Each year, we launch a campaign that is important and relevant to youth.

This year’s Freedom Challenge theme focuses on raising the criminal age of responsibility in Aotearoa New Zealand from an appalling 10 years old to the UN standard of at least 14 years old.

Freedom Challenge FAQs

WHO CAN REGISTER?

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WHAT CAN I DO?

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WHEN IS IT? 

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WHERE DO I START?

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“Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.”

- Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani Education Activist

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2022 FREEDOM CHALLENGE

This year’s Freedom Challenge theme focuses on raising the criminal age of responsibility in Aotearoa New Zealand from an appalling 10 years old to the UN standard of at least 14 years old.

At the age of 10, you are too young to buy alcohol, too young to drive, and too young to vote.

But you are NOT too young to be charged and convicted of murder and manslaughter.

That’s right. Here in Aotearoa New Zealand, the minimum age of criminal responsibility is an appalling 10 years old - the same as a Year 5 or 6 kid in primary school.

Medical and psychological evidence shows that at such a young age, children’s brains are still developing - especially the parts that regulate judgement, decision-making and impulse control. Tamariki aged 10-13 do not make decisions with the planning and foresight of adults. Therefore, it is not appropriate to hold them criminally responsible in the same way we do for adults.

This is unacceptable, and it is up to us to unite and speak up.

Together, let’s act to call on Justice Minister Hon. Kiritapu Allan to:

RAISE THE CRIMINAL AGE TO AT LEAST 14 YEARS OLD

See below for resources to help you and once registered, we will also send out physical resources.

Join our movement.

Support this kaupapa.

Downloadable resources to assist your action-taking

More info can be found on

Once registered, we will also send out additional physical resources.

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FREEDOM CHALLENGE: REWIND

You are never too young to take a stand for human rights.

For nearly two decades, rangatahi across the motu have taken up the Freedom Challenge and helped create lasting change.

Below are a handful of wins, amongst many, that prove that when youth like you stand together and take action, we are able to take one (or more!) steps closer to justice.

2021

2018

2015

2021

2018

2015

2021

2018

2015

The action you took in our 2021 “Please take me to a safe place” campaign contributed to the New Zealand’s Government’s 2022 announcement to stop imprisoning people seeking asylum here in Aotearoa New Zealand.

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FREEDOM CHALLENGE: PAST THEMES

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