17 Apr 2024

Roosevelt Four Freedoms Award honours Walk Free’s Grace Forrest human rights work

Founder Grace Forrest has been honoured with a Roosevelt Four Freedoms Award, Freedom from Fear, as part of Walk Free’s work to eradicate modern slavery.

The medals are awarded to individuals and organisations committed to promoting the four freedoms proclaimed by President Roosevelt in 1941. Photo Credit: Ben Houdijk.

She’s the first Australian woman to be recognised – joining global recipients such as His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, and Malala Yousafzai.

The Walk Free team has been measuring and addressing modern slavery for over a decade. The data is used to educate and encourage action from governments, businesses, and faith communities globally.

Modern slavery covers a range of exploitative practices. This includes forced labour, forced marriage, debt bondage, human trafficking, and state-imposed forced labour. Everyone has the power to make a difference by questioning the origins of the products and advocating for ethically sourced goods.

Roosevelt Four Freedoms Award 2024



Freedom from fear, a concept created by Franklin Roosevelt to address international conflict and the arms trade, now includes a broader range of issues.

Active global conflicts, environmental degradation, the production of trillions of dollars’ worth of goods through exploitation, and the millions living in modern slavery. Freedom from fear is about the freedom to choose.

Change begins with small actions. It is up to the next generation of leaders to address these complex challenges and ensure that human rights have meaning everywhere.

Learn more about each of this year’s recipients.

Freedom of Worship – Zumretay Arkin

Zumretay Arkin has been campaigning for the rights of Uighurs, a people in western China, for years. Arkin draws international attention to the suppression of religious freedom and violation of human rights of the Uyghur people.

Freedom from Want – Sônia Guajajara

Sônia Guajajara is Brazil’s first Minister for Indigenous Peoples, after a life of indigenous activism. In her new role, Guajajara continues her fight to recognize and protect indigenous lands.

Freedom of Speech – Bellingcat

Research collective Bellingcat makes every effort to separate fact from fiction. The foundation investigates international conflicts and has developed a distinctive approach to get closer, faster, and more accurate to the truth.

International Four Freedoms award – Save Ukraine

Save Ukraine rescues the country’s most vulnerable from combat zones and returning Ukrainian children from Russia and occupied territories. The organisation is best known for its efforts and involvement in the return of kidnapped Ukrainian children.