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Advancing the Transformative Role of Education at the Global Week of Faith in Action for Children
Arigatou International – Geneva carried out a series of online workshops and panel discussions within the framework of the online Global Week of Faith in Action for Children organized by Arigatou International in November 2020.
These events sought to prompt action and reflection on the critical need for a transformative approach to education —one that fosters values in children, strengthens their sense of belonging and interconnectedness, and helps them become agents of positive change in their communities.
How Education Can Respond to the Challenges That Covid-19 Presents in the Lives of Children
16 November 2020
More than 113 participants, including 40 children and youth from Latin America and Europe gathered online on 16 November 2020 to share their experiences on how the Covid-19 pandemic affected their lives.
As children and youth described the changes and challenges they faced, they came up with ideas and recommendations on how education can help generate positive changes.
“I imagine a type of education with a more dynamic environment, adding the elements of play and curiosity.”
Magui, a child from Argentina
The Transformative Role of Education in Times of Covid-19 and Beyond: Challenges and Opportunities
During this online session, the panelists, which included children and experts on education, peace and dialogue, discussed the current context amidst the Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on education.
They reflected on the role of education in fostering interconnectedness, strengthening children’s agency, and addressing inequalities and promoting social justice. They emphasized that, while delivering the basics of education is essential, especially for those in vulnerable situations, this approach might not be sufficient to address the persisting inequalities and may continue to marginalize groups of the population from the benefits of quality education.
Finally, they identified policies and approaches to drive the transformative role of education in the current context and beyond.
The event, which was held online on 17 November 2020, was attended by 579 people.
“Social-emotional learning can be trained, and when it is mainstreamed in education systems, it brings high returns.”
Dr. Anantha Duraiappah,
UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development.
“Ideally, education would inspire our creativity and empowers the young and contributes to fairer and more just societies (…) All these transformations start with a change of mindset in the sense that we have to re-engage with the ends of education”
Dr. Scherto Gill,
GHFP Research Institute
Learning to Live Together in the Digital World: A Workshop for Children and Adolescents of the Global Network of Religions for Children
A group of 65 children and youth from the Global Network of Religions for Children (GNRC) in Latin America gathered online on 17 November 2020 to explore the digital world as a space of relationships and coexistence.
Organized by the GNRC and Arigatou International – Geneva, the workshop provided an enriching space for the participants to analyze the opportunities and risks of the digital world and reflect on the ethical values that can help them make the most of it, preventing possible risks and dangers.
From our team:
“It was an amazing opportunity for young people and religious leaders to convene and explore how they can make a difference during the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Mr. Nicky Howard,
Arigatou International - Geneva
How to Create Spaces to Give Children a Voice and Strengthen their Socio-emotional and Spiritual Well-Being during the Covid-19 Pandemic
Arigatou International – Geneva organized a closed workshop with 15 families including 18 children ages three to eight, from Brazil, Guinea Bissau, Mozambique, Peru and Venezuela, as well as eight social workers from Pastoral da Criança, Brazil.
The workshop sought to explore how the pandemic affects children’s lives, in particular the lives of young children.
Through different games and activities, children shared their feelings and experiences, particularly about how they have been experiencing the pandemic. Parents, caregivers and social workers expressed the importance of these spaces and called for more synergies between organizations to respond to the exacerbation of poverty and violence affecting children.
Children’s Solutions Lab
On 19 November 2020, two Arigatou International initiatives, Ethics Education for Children and End Child Poverty, co-organized an intergenerational dialogue with the five finalist groups of the Children’s Solutions Lab and representatives from Arigatou International.
During the webinar, children and adults engaged in a dialogue about the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and poverty on children, and how education and child-led initiatives can help to address these challenges.
Participants highlighted the importance of creating spaces where children can think of the solutions to some of the challenges they face, and the need of committed adults who can enable, empower and help children to bring forth their ideas.
“With proper education, we can tackle the challenges of Covid-19. With education, we can be part of the solution in many other challenges like this in the future”
a child from India
Global Week of Faith in Action for Children
More than 1,700 children, youth, and adults from diverse cultural, ethnic, and religious backgrounds gathered at the Global Week of Faith in Action for Children, held online from 16 to 20 November 2020.
The Global Week was organized by Arigatou International, in collaboration with KAICIID Dialogue Centre, Religions for Peace, Shanti Ashram, UNICEF and World Vision International; and with the support and participation of 64 global, regional, and local partners.
With 25 live sessions in five languages, the Global Week was a unique opportunity for children, youth, and representatives from different sectors of society to come together to propose joint actions and compelling responses to address the underlying issues that impact children’s well-being, and enhance their participation in matters that concern them, with particular focus on the impacts during and post Covid-19.
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