Young Humanists International
Logo 2002–2019
Formation2002; 19 years ago (2002)
Region served

Young Humanists International,[1] known as the International Humanist and Ethical Youth Organisation or IHEYO from 2002–2019, is the youth wing of Humanists International (known as the International Humanist and Ethical Union from 1952–2019), founded in 2002[citation needed]. It aims to network young humanists around the world together, support training and promote humanist values for the age category of 18–35. It is an umbrella organisation representing around 40,000 young people[2] across the world.[1]


East European Conference in Bucharest, Romania, in 2015
East European Conference in Bucharest, Romania, in 2015

Young Humanists International is the international umbrella organisation for Humanist youth organisations. Its primary mission is to bring into active association youth groups and young humanist individuals throughout the world interested in promoting humanism, as is described in the IHEU Amsterdam Declaration 2002. Young Humanists International brings together people aged 18–35 who describe themselves as humanists, atheists, agnostics, freethinkers, skeptics and similar views.

The vision of Young Humanists International is to give a voice to young humanists within the mission of Humanists International. The mission of Humanists International is to build and represent the global humanist movement that defends human rights and promotes humanist values worldwide. It does this by organising international networking events, offering training, connecting youth through social media and by its work in regional working groups. These activities empower its members to achieve their individual, local and regional goals.[2]

Young Humanists International members form the young humanist communities and campaign for political and cultural change in a diverse range of areas such as religious freedom, women's rights, education rights, abortion rights, LGBTIQ rights, equality, human rights, freedom of speech/thought/belief, public communication of science.[2]


Young Humanists International was formally established as the International Humanist and Ethical Youth Organisation (IHEYO) in 2003, but it was not completely a 21st-century construct. The first version of the organisation was launched in 1966, and lasted around ten years. In the 1980s, it was again revived for a similar period of time. But it was not until 2001, when Humanists International (then known as the International Humanist and Ethical Union) started an internship programme that the idea of re-establishing an international humanist youth network was revived in a lasting way. IHEYO was renamed Young Humanists International on 15 February 2019.


Name Group Country
Atheist Centre Asia India
Aware Girls Asia Pakistan
Humanists UK (represented by Young Humanists and Humanist Students) Europe United Kingdom
Junge Humanistinnen & Humanisten in Deutschland Europe Germany
Humanist Alliance of the Philippines, International Asia Philippines
Humanist Association for Leadership, Equity and Accountability Africa Uganda
Humanist Empowerment of Livelihoods in Uganda Africa Uganda
Humanistische Jongeren Europe Belgium
Humanistischer Freidenkerbund Havelland/Brandenburg Europe Germany
Humanistisk Ungdom Europe Norway
Humanist Society (Singapore) Asia Singapore
Jong HV Europe Netherlands
Nigerian Humanist Students Society Africa Nigeria
Norwegian Humanist Association Europe Norway
Polish Humanist Association Europe Poland
Polish Rationalists Society Europe Poland
Social Development Foundation Asia India
Society for Humanism Youth Asia Nepal
Swedish Humanist Association Europe Sweden
Unie Vrijzinnige Verenigingen Europe Belgium
Youth for Community Academic and Development Services Africa Liberia

As IHEYO, the organisation kept a separate membership list from its parent organisation, the International Humanist and Ethical Union. At the 2017 general assembly in Malta, the organisation voted to merge its membership list with the parent organisation as part of the relaunched Humanists International and Young Humanists International.

It is customary for organisations with youth sections to have those sections represented as voting delegates at Young Humanists International meetings. For example, the Belgian humanist group is represented by Humanistische Jongeren; the American Ethical Union is represented in the form of its Future Ethical of Societies wing; and the British group Humanists UK is represented by Young Humanists (UK) and Humanist Students.


Americas WG launch event in Washington, DC, 2015
Americas WG launch event in Washington, DC, 2015
Asian WG training in Singapore, 2015.
Asian WG training in Singapore, 2015.

Young Humanists International is organised into regional "working groups", which act as forums through which youth-led humanist organisations can cooperate and coordinate their activities. There are four Working Groups: the Asian Humanist Alliance, African Working Group, European Working Group, and an Americas Working Group.

African Working Group

The African Working Group[3] was established around 2005. It organises regional meetings in East and West Africa. The African Working Group is mainly organised in East Africa (Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, etc.) and West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Cameroon, etc.). The Fourth Annual IHEYO East African Regional Working Group Meeting was held in Kigali on 26–28 August 2015.[4]

Americas Working Group

The American Working group is the newest and launched in Washington DC in May 2015 at the Future of Ethical Societies Annual conference.[5] This working group covers Canada, the United States of America, Central America, and South America.

Asian Humanist Alliance (Asian Working Group)

The Asian Working Group is a joint humanist effort in this continent to foster humanist values and ideas. Since its inception in 2007, it has published information −bulletins, has had regular meetings and organised events. The Working Group has members in Pakistan, India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines.

European Working Group

The European Working group brings together member organisations in Europe. Humanist groups in Western Europe are typically among the strongest and best-developed in the world, and Working Group participation is often led by dedicated youth sections of European humanist organisations. The Working Group organises annual in-person meetings to coordinate the international exchanges taking place at events organised in Europe, including conferences it organises such as "European Humanist Youth Days".[6]


IHEYO General Assembly in Oslo, Norway 2015


Better Tomorrow

Better Tomorrow is IHEYO's annual charity event. Its concept was based on the British student federation AHS's Non-Prophet Week.[20]


Jackson with European humanists in Esbeek, Netherlands, in 2015
Jackson with European humanists in Esbeek, Netherlands, in 2015


  1. ^ a b "Young Humanists International". Young Humanists International website. Humanists International. 15 February 2019. Retrieved 15 February 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "About IHEYO and IHEU". Humanist Society Singapore website. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  3. ^ African Working Group on Facebook
    African Working Group on Twitter
  4. ^ Rice, Lily (October 2015). "Learning humanism in Uganda" (PDF). Open Talk Magazine. Humanist Association for Leadership, Equity and Accountability. 8 (8): 14. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  5. ^ "Future of Ethical Societies". American Ethical Union. Retrieved 19 June 2016.
  6. ^ a b "European Humanist Youth Days". EHYD website. IHEYO. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  7. ^ "Upcoming Events". IHEU website. IHEYO. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  8. ^ Platzek, Arik (1 October 2013). "Vielleicht vergessen wir zu oft die Emotionen". Diesseits. HPD: 2. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  9. ^ Platzek, Arik (28 April 2013). "Nichtreligion sieht noch immer sehr westlich aus". Diesseits. HPD: 1. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  10. ^ "Asia Humanism Conference: Breaking Barriers". IHEYO. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  11. ^ Platzek, Arik (24 April 2013). "Jugend plant für die Zukunft". Diesseits. HPD: 1. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  12. ^ "European Humanist Youth Days 2013". IHEYO. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  13. ^ Ongere, George; Albarus, Saskia; Platzek, Arik (10 July 2014). "Humanismus nutzen, um den weniger Glücklichen in Afrika zu helfen". Diesseits. HPD: 1. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  14. ^ "African Regional Humanist Meeting". IHEYO. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  15. ^ Prien, Marieke (4 May 2015). "Humanism – from Social Media to Public Policies". Diesseits. HPD: 1. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  16. ^ Prien, Marieke (21 August 2015). "Workshops, Wasserschlachten und Guerilla-Skeptizismus bei Wikipedia". Diesseits. HPD: 1. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  17. ^ Even Gran (4 November 2015). "Verdens humanister har fått ny sjef". Fritanke. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  18. ^ Samuel Fuks (24 December 2015). "From Europe: Announcing the 'We Need Youth' Program". IHEU website. IHEYO. Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  19. ^ "IHEYO and IHEU GA". IHEU. Retrieved 19 June 2016.
  20. ^ van Dijck, Marc (November 2015). "'Met menslievendheid de wijken in'" (PDF). Human. Humanistisch Verbond (3): 17. Retrieved 18 November 2015.
  21. ^ "EC interview – Gea Meijers". IHEU website. 30 September 2008. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  22. ^ a b Even Gran (1 July 2008). "Helgestad takker av som IHEYO-president". Fri Tanke. Norwegian Humanist Association. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  23. ^ "EC member". IHEU website. 1 July 2008. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  24. ^ "Silvana Uhlrich". IHEYO website. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  25. ^ Winter, Inke; Lutz, Renken (23 May 2012). "Humanistische JugendFEIER erfreut sich in Niedersachsen zunehmender Beliebtheit". Diesseits. Humanistischer Verband Deutschlands. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  26. ^ Barbara Palladini (15 May 2015). "Weekend Uaar Giovani con flash mob". Union of Rationalist Atheists and Agnostics. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  27. ^ IHEYO (23 May 2016). "IHEYO General Assembly in Malta". International Humanist and Ethical Union. Retrieved 4 June 2016.