Urgent Action Appeals are sent out monthly or as needed to alert a network of concerned people about individuals around the world who need intercession immediately. Sometimes they have been "disappeared," sometimes they are in prison and in ill health, sometimes they are in danger of torture or are being tortured even as you are reading this. Writing letters to national and international authorities can help them because people who are on the "radar screen" of the wider world cannot be treated as if they do not matter.
"Don't stop writing. Each individual can have an effect. If you give us moral support, we will do the rest." --Kim Dae Jung, opposition leader and released prisoner of conscience from South Korea