Video Conference on Civic Engagement
Updated: Sep 1, 2021
I recently had an opportunity. A learning opportunity. The moment you have all been waiting for. Actually just the moment I have been waiting for. In fact I am only making this blog right now because I attended this video conference.' Video conference' cannot fully incapsulate the impact of this 'melting pot of cultures, beliefs and perspectives'. It was definitely a life-enhancing meet, if not a life-changing one. Before I skip on to a separate tangent altogether, let me begin my full reflection. Please do excuse any repetition of sentences.
Today I am going to reflect upon my wonderful experience with Generation Global. Let me begin by telling you all about Generation Global. Generation Global is a global citizenship education programme for young people ages 13 to 17 aiming to enable and help us embrace the future, equipped with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to become active and open-minded global citizens. And on the occasion of International Youth Day, they organised a video conference on Civic Participation. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to be a part of one of their video conferences along with 20 or so other people from all across the globe. The diversity showed that each person had a different experience with civic participation and I could see how this influenced individual perspectives. For example, an Indian from Jaipur saw that the tourists there were gradually destroying old historic monuments by scratching the walls and artifacts. She, along with her friends signed a petition and sent it to the local welfare office asking for their permission to try to preserve such landmarks every weekend. They recently resumed their much appreciated efforts again after the lockdown. While another from Malaysia sought to educate people in rural areas about sanitation and the precautions they must take to avoid circumstances caused due to poor hygiene. What I am trying to say is that each person has a unique story, but shared the same goal- to help their community in one way or the other. Another thing I would like to reflect upon is the number of students who actively engaged in the dialogue, which motivated me to do the same as well in an effective manner. In addition to that I learned to ask questions that helped others open up, and most importantly to disagree respectfully. Only after joining Generation Global, did I realise that you could have a spirited, polite conversation with anyone, while completely disagreeing with them. In conclusion, this was not just a learning experience but an extremely enjoyable one. I was genuinely fascinated by the people present and am still curious about them and their lives.