The ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism

The ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism is granted on an annual basis to individuals or organizations whose work has had an exceptionally positive impact on the advancement and/or defense of human rights.

In 2011, Puffin Founder and President Perry Rosenstein worked with ALBA to create a new initiative, the ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Project (HRP), established to honor the International Brigades and all those who fought against fascism during the Spanish Civil War by connecting that legacy with international activist causes today, in particular the defense of human rights.

A $100,000 cash award is given annually to the laureate individual/s or organization/s to support his/her/their ongoing work on the area of Human Rights Activism.

The project consists of two primary components: an annual ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism in the amount of $100,000, and an informal international network of allied organizations working in the area of human rights, historical memory, and the legacy of the International Brigades.

The ALBA Human Rights Project connects directly to the historical experiences, aspirations, and idealism of the Lincoln Brigade. In the years after the Spanish Civil War, many of the vets committed their lives to assisting political prisoners around the world—particularly in Spain and Latin America — aiding political refugees, advocating for social justice, actively defending imperiled democratic institutions, or mobilizing the arts for worthy activist causes. Recent developments in Spain, Latin America, the Arab world and elsewhere have focused world attention on the human rights issues associated with the legacies of dictatorships: the need for working through the violent past, recovering historical memory and honoring the rights of victims of repression. The annual ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Activism Award, which is intended to continue for a minimum of 10 years, aims to support this work and to keep it in the public eye.

The aging vets’ continued presence at the forefront of progressive causes never ceased to inspire younger generations of activists. Now that the vets have all but disappeared, the ALBA/Puffin Human Rights project seeks to honor the Lincoln Brigade’s legacy by extending it to the new human rights challenges of the 21st century.

The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives

The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) is an educational non-profit dedicated to promoting social activism and the defense of human rights. ALBA’s work is inspired by the brave American volunteers of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade who fought and died fighting fascism in the Spanish Civil War (1936-39). ALBA’s programs include teacher institutes, exhibitions, publications, cultural programs and an annual award for human rights activism, given in partnership with the Puffin Foundation. Drawing on the ALBA collections in New York University’s Tamiment Library, ALBA works to preserve the legacy of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade as an inspiration for present and future generations.


2024 18BY VOTE

An in-person award ceremony in New York City will be held on May 4 to honor the 2024 ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism recipient, 18by Vote. One of the…

2023 Indigenous Women Rising

Indigenous Women Rising Logo

Fifty years after Roe v. Wade, the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) announces that the 2023 ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism will go to Indigenous Women Rising (IWR). Following…

2022 Life After Hate

 The ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism was awarded to Life After Hate on April 30, 2022.  The ceremony is held each year as a part of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archvive’s annual gala….

2021 My Brother’s Keeper

A Live Online Gala! Honoring the Abraham Lincoln Brigade & My Brother’s KeeperBroadcast Live from ALBA’s Facebook PageSunday, May 2nd, 5 PM EDTThe event lineup includes Billy Bragg, Guy Davis,…

2020 No More Deaths

The Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives (ALBA) is pleased to announce that the 2020 ALBA/Puffin Award for Human Rights Activism will go to No More Deaths in support of its humanitarian…

2019 The Immigration Justice Campaign

With asylum seekers facing unprecedented attacks on their ability to seek protection in the United States — at the border, in detention centers, and in the immigration courts — the…

2018 Coalition of Immokalee Workers

2018 alba imokalee workers crop

Remarks of Neal Rosenstein, Vice President of the Puffin Foundation. ALBA/Puffin Human Rights Prize May 12, 2018 Good afternoon friends. On behalf of Perry and Gladys Rosenstein & the Puffin…

2017 Proactiva Open Arms

In September 2015, Proactiva Open Arms  was the first NGO specializing in rescue missions to arrive at the island of Lesbos (Greece). Since June 2016, POA’s ship Astral, fully equipped…

2016 Lydia Cacho and Jeremy Scahill

Fearless, Border-Crossing Journalists Expose Corruption at the Highest Levels: Lydia Cacho (Mexico) and Jeremy Scahill (USA) Win Human Rights Award New York—On Saturday, May 7, 2016, the Abraham Lincoln Brigade…

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