Our Calendar

Civic Action, Engagement and Leadership
Civic Action, Engagement and Leadership
  • Sat 29 Jul 2017
  • 4:00 AM to 6:00 AM
  • Islamabad

Overview: Dil Say Pakistan in collaboration with YESPeace Network (UNESCO) and Civic Face Pakistan organized a four-day Training of the trainer which aimed at training community leaders through rigorous activity-based learning. During this four days training, expert trainers trained Dil Say Pakistan Torchbearers and Civic Face Pakistan Fellows 2017 on creating spaces for informed dialogue and taking positive social actions in their respective communities. Dil Say Pakistan Torchbearer Program is a national community outreach initiatives which we engage young change makers who not only represent Dil Say Pakistan in their cities and communities but they also take community engagement initiatives on the positive social and cultural values which Dil Say Pakistan campaign promotes. Civic Face Fellows Program (CFFP) 2017 involved university students in a rigorous one-month fellowship program. The fellows had an agenda of teaching multiple subjects to the public school students in Murree. The subjects ranged from English, Mathematics, Philosophy, Arts, History, Leadership, Public Speaking, and Dramatics. Civic Face Pakistan aims to teach students how to critically approach these subjects along with building interpersonal skills. Civic Face Pakistan is committed to train public school students and develop their critical thinking and leadership skills to transform them into change agents in their respective communities. YesPeace (UNESCO) is a network of networks that work towards building on existing youth networks by supporting their initiatives, and mobilizing youth action towards the common agenda of transforming education towards the achievement of the Post - 2015 development agenda. The YESPeace Network advocates for building capabilities of the youth, to understand and comprehend the challenges they face at local and global levels and develop strategies which enable them to realize their full potential as citizens of the world. The network creates a new social contract on reaching out to the youth at the peripheries thus mobilizing action from local to global. Program and sessions: The four-day workshop took place in Islamabad, from July 29 - August 1, 2017. A total number of 32 students and young professionals (13 girls and 18 boys) participated in the workshop. This DSP and Civic Face fellows belonged to 11 different cities of Pakistan; Gujranwala, Okara, Karachi, Lahore, Faisalabad, Islamabad, Kasur, Swat, Quetta, Gilgit Baltistan and Peshawar. The training included different sessions on capacity building, leadership skills, team building, peace messaging, counter-violent extremism, interfaith harmony, bashing stereotypes, critical thinking, and interpersonal skills. DAY 1 1. Tag Yourself: The first session was meant to be an icebreaker/ energizer for the participants. The first activity conducted by Mohsin Naseem enabled the fellows to get to know one another better. It also helped them to be more confident and active. The trainer asked everyone to form pairs so they could tell the partner 2. The Marshmallow Challenge: The Marshmallow is a metaphor for the hidden assumptions of a Project: The assumption in the Marshmallow Challenge is that marshmallows are light and fluffy and easily supported by the spaghetti sticks. When you actually try to build the structure, the marshmallows don’t seem so light. The lesson in the marshmallow challenge is that we need to identify the assumptions in our project – the real needs, the cost of the product, and the duration of the service – and test them early and often. That’s the mechanism that leads to effective innovation. The participants were divided into five teams and were provided with spaghetti, marshmallows, tape, and thread. Each team was asked to make a tall and stable structure. The teams came up with different ideas. The idea was to strengthen team building and leadership skills. This activity was conducted by Mohsin Naseem. 3. Orientation: This session focused on two main aspects of the training: i. The Dil Say Pakistan Torchbearer program ii. Civic Face Fellows ’17 program by Civic Face iii. The YesPeace Network A detailed presentation was delivered which elaborated the structure and activities of Dil Say Pakistan, Civic Face and The YesPeace Network and their deliverables. It included explaining the participants all the incentives and overall benefits of being a part of these programs. The trainers for this session were Asad Shoaib (Civic Face) and Maha Usman (Dil Say Pakistan). 4. Identity - US/THEM & Global Citizenship: This session was conducted by Aneeq Cheema where he spoke about stereotypes and preconceived notions that we form about others. We tend to associate ourselves with positive attributes but when it comes to others, we associate them with negative qualities. The activity charged up the audience because they could relate to a lot of such norms that exist in our society. A DSP fellow from Lahore commented, “It’s not necessary that others are opposite to what we are, they can have the same qualities or at least similar ones” The session includes following activities; 1. Mind Jog: Showed picture of a bearded guy, a girl in shalwar qameez and dupatta and a couple more and ask the participants what came in their mind after watching each picture. ( Five minutes) 2. Personal Connect: Asked the participants to write their stereotypes on race, gender, nation, ethnicity, culture and religion on small chit of papers and put a dustbin on the table and asked the participants to throw these chits in it. (10 minutes) 3. Information Exchange: Showed the following video to the participants: The Blind Men and the Elephant: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vn9BUfUCL4I and asked their views and comments on it and had a discussion on how important it is to judge something and someone after getting the full information. (15 minutes) 4. Information Application: Asked the participants to define themselves in five words and then asked them to pick 3. Told the participants to define ‘us’ through these words; Us? Pakistanis only? How about Change-makers? Optimists? Educated Class? And then told the participants to define; ‘not us’. (15 minutes) 5. Real World Connect: Discrimination & Global Citizenship (Injustices we can see in the world and would like to change). a) Asked the participants to imagine you are watching a movie, someone is walking on a bridge, alone in a Western country. What country is this? What gender is the person? What is he/she wearing?) b) Take the camera to the front and imagine that its actually you. c) Now take the camera back to where it was. d) Now think of the camera as a person. Try to come up with a few things this person is thinking about you (you two have never met) e) Do you feel safe? f) Why not? g) What’s coming in the way? h) Have you done something wrong? Think of the word discrimination. i) Open your eyes and look around: How else does it happen in this country? j) What should change in your country? In that Western country? k) Discussion on all the above mentioned topics for 25 Minutes. (Aneeq Cheema is a graduate in Economics and Political Science from the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). His research interests include nationalism, identity and their problematic combination in Pakistan: national identity. Exploring the national identity construction in Pakistan through curriculum, he has authored a treatise on “Drawn Swords: Subtle and Brazen An exploration into the construction of national identity through school curriculum” as his senior thesis at LUMS. He has been an active contributor to the student life at LUMS organizing the biggest student business competition at LUMS: Young Leaders and Entrepreneurs Summit (YLES) in 2007. He has also served as the President of LUMS Entrepreneurial Society, and was also elected as a representative to the Student Council. As a member of Seeds of Peace, an international organization devoted for conflict resolution through youth empowerment in the conflict ridden countries, he has helped design and implement various programs for awareness and promoting tolerance in the youth of Pakistan.) 5. Life Maps: This exercise was meant to let the participants make their own autobiography using chart papers and magazine clippings. The activity helped them discuss the kinds of important events that they had had. They shared their life experiences and moments that made them who they are. All of these participants were activists so expressed their journey on chart paper. Sojla, a girl from Islamabad shared how she donated her hair to cancer patients and what events led her to do that. Another participant from Lahore expressed the importance of street theatre in his life. He told how his family was going through a financial crisis at one point and his sister earned money though performing arts. 6. Visit to Black Box Sounds: As another energizer, the participants were taken to Black Box Sounds Studio where they watched the upcoming products of Dil Say Pakistan. The audience enjoyed watching travelogues and a mini animation episode by DSP. After the screening, they took a tour of the place and asked questions related to media and production. DAY 2 1. Move Around: This activity also served as an energizer so people could move around and feel fresh before jumping to the next activity. 2. Screening of Umeed-e-Seher: Umeed-e-Seher is a documentary by a Pakistani activist. It portrays how a boy from Southern Punjab is given to arms of militancy and violence and his return to a life of a peaceful and law-abiding citizen. People felt connected during this session. Their dogmatic ideas were challenged. There were many questions on identity, peace, and tolerance. The documentary changed their perspective on life values. 3. Counter Violent Extremism: This session by Syed Ali Abbas Zaidi focused on the different ideologies and radical narratives prevalent in our society that have become deep-seated and how to overcome that. The session talked the causes behind extremism, the shortcomings with some of the narratives that are used in the western media, the types of extremism, and countering the extremist narrative. “Central Punjab has been radicalized so much that there are places with Islamic names such as Allahabad and Mustafabad because of Islamic ideology and its influence from the Arab World”, said Shakeel Ahmad from Kasur. Another participant, Shahnawaz Rasheed commented on talking about the extreme narrative, “People think that Nawaz Sharif’s disqualification as a prime minister is due to the hanging of Mumtaz Qadri. It was karma.” 4. Civic Imagination: Reinventing the Pakistani Dream: This was an activity which sparked imagination among the audience for a better society. It made them think about a utopian world and what measures do they need to achieve that. They were given a few topics such as interfaith harmony, religious tolerance, better education structure, etc. Each group presented their idea of a utopian world by acting out in a mini play. The audience thoroughly enjoyed the activity and reflected upon the biases our society faces in the present times. Aimon Fatima and Umair Vahidy gave a presentation on the topic and later in the day, the participants performed the activity. 5. Understanding Moral Values in the context of Conflicts Resolution: Hassan Raza conducted this session in which participants have been told about a story of a young Girl named Razia aged 14, her mother died when she was very young and her father, Dr. Ali took care of her all her life. He was very caring and provided everything to her and fulfilled all her wishes but he was very strict about the 7pm curfew before which Razia had to reach home in any case. Once Razia reach 15 minutes late and her father scolded her badly and said that I provided everything to you and you did not even care to follow my instructions. After a month Dr. Ali had to go to the hospital on an emergency call at 5pm. He told Razia that I am leaving you at home, if you go out then please come back home before 7pm. Razia was getting bored he planned to meet his friend Ahmad who lives bit far from Razia’s place. She reach Ahmad’s home at 5.45pm and they started talking and playing and she forgots to keep track of time and 7pm she remembered that she had to get back home at 7pm. She got really scared and left at once and try to get a cab but the cab driver asked for 400Rs to Razia’s home which she didn’t have. She requested him to decrease the cab fare and shared her story but the cab driver was adamant. She got back to Ahmad’s place and asked him to help her. Ahmad said to her that his parents are also about to come and she has to leave at once and refused to help her. Then she remembered that her class fellow Maryam also lives in Ahmad’s street. She went to her home and told her the entire story and asked her to help her. Maryam said that she already told her to not be friends with Ahmad, he is not the right guy but she did not listen now she also refused to help her. Now Razia was really scared and confused and decided to take a short-cut to her home about which it was famous that there lives a mad man and hurts everybody who takes that route. One day after this incident there was a small news story published in a local newspaper that police found the dead body of a 14 years old girl. After sharing this tragic story Hassan asked the participants that what do they think who is responsible for the death of Razi besides that madman. Some participants said; Dr. Ali, some said Ahmad so on and so forth. Hassan wrote the names of Razzia, Dr. Ali, Ahmad, taxi driver and Maryam on the board and divided the participants into the groups according to their views about who was more responsible for the death of Razia and asked all the 5 groups to write at least 5 arguments about why they choose this person. After 10 minutes of internal discussion of all the 5 groups Hassan called each group one by one and asked them to present their arguments. Every group came up with strong argument about why they think the person they choose is guilty of the death of Razia. Hassan wrote all the arguments on the board under the name of that person. After every groups presentation He asked all the participants to share their disagreements. A firing discussion took place after every presentation. When all the groups completed their presentations Hassan asked the participants to change the arguments in a way which can determine that on which moral and ethical value this argument has been mentioned. For example if a group said that Dr. Ali is responsible because he should not be too strict about the timing then the moral value behind this argument is ‘Trust’. Then all the participants contributed in the discussion of finding corresponding moral values of their arguments and Hassan wrote them against their arguments. In end he said that whenever we are in a conflict we should see the moral values, principles and ethical priorities of the party with whom we are in conflict with. In a conflict we always see the disagreements, conflicting point and only the bad aspect of the other party however if we try to judge them by their moral system and ethical priorities we can understand them in a better way. Day 3 1. Orientation about CFFP and CFSP 2017: Asad Shoaib, Founder Civic Face Pakistan gave the formal orientation about Civic Face Fellow Program (CFFP) and Civic Face Scholar Program (CFSP) 2017. Civic Face Fellows is a one month long activity based training program where fellows (university students) undergo training sessions on topics related to civic education including human rights, political and social action and communication. Civic Face Scholars Program is designed to inculcate critical thinking among public school students across Pakistan to tackle academic and social challenges. At CFSP, public school students are trained and mentored by Civic Face Fellows. Apart from that, the capacity of public school students is built in the subjects such as public speaking, dramatics, English, Mathematics, Philosophy, Science, World History and Literature. 2. Camp Teams Formation: The next session included “Camp Teams Formation”. This session was carried out by Ahsan Ali who has been associated with British Council in the past. He took part in Civic Face Training of Trainers workshop as a trainer to train participants. In this session, he formed different teams and briefed about the activities that will take place in their camp when they travel to Murree. 3. Pedagogical Skills: A session about “Pedagogical Skills” was taken by Tahira Anwar. Tahira Anwar is in the field of teaching for a long time, having 10 years of experience. She shared with participants her experience of teaching in United States and specifically focused on the art of teaching. Her session told participants those skills through which one is able to convey knowledge and skills in way that students can understand remember and apply. 4. Teaching is about Story Telling: Madeeha Raza, founder, “Women Through Film” which is Pakistan's first Women's International Film Festival gave a session about “Teaching is about Story Telling”. She shared with the group the importance of storytelling in everyday life and how contemporary pedagogy requires trainers/instructors to impart lessons to students using storytelling techniques. She carried out some storytelling activities in groups, one describing a recent event turning into history a decade from now, and another called “A bag of stories”. 5. How the Camp would look like: Civic Face Co founder, Mohsin Naseem explained details about the camp where participants would be living for a month. They were informed about the possible relevant information regarding their stay in the camp. Participants were briefed about the location of the camp, the food they’d get, the dress code, demographics, the language locals speak, the route to the camp, nearby commercial areas. Participants were also briefed about the tips should there be any emergency situation. 6. Tackling the challenge: The session of “Tackling the challenge” was taken by the cofounders of Civic Face, Asad Shoaib and Mohsin Naseem. It included sessions on how to engage with public school students in Murree. Apart from that, a special training was given on how to comply with the local cultural norms, adjust with the culture and how to tackle the harsh weather in the hill station. 7. Lesson Plans: An hour long session about “Lesson Plans” was carried out by Asad Shoaib, in which lesson plans were made under supervision of seasoned academics to ensure maximum efficacy of CFSP. 8. Debrief: The third day of the training concluded with the final debriefing session where Asad Shoaib, asked the participants about their feedback. Participants were asked about their learning, understandings and knowledge they got from the third day. DAY 4 1. Making Lesson Plans: A detailed lesson plans was made by the Civic Face team where it was decided that different lessons would be carried out with the participants in their one month stay in the camp. Some of the topics that included in the lessons were Philosophy, Critical thinking, World History, Public Speaking, Science and Literature. 2. Presentation of Lesson Plans: After lunch, fellows were asked to give presentations about the topics that were discussed in “Making Lesson Plans” sessions. This session was carried out by the fellows where they gave their input. 3. Feedback on Lesson Plans: After fellows presented their views on Lesson Plans, a session about the feedback which was given to fellows about their progress, performance on Lesson plans was given by Civic Face team. 4. Assigning duties and Debrief: The final session of the four day workshop was carried out Asad Shoaib and Mohsin Naseem where the officially concluded the workshop by assigning duties to both the team members as well as the participants which they’d perform during their camp. Civic Face four day Training of Trainers ended with the debrief session. Current Status: We have received 25 entries by different trainers from seven cities of Pakistan. Their proposals comprise an extended community of practice and broadened network which is highly beneficial for all entities; YESPeace, Dil Say Pakistan trainers, and the targeted communities. As DSP already has its reach to all provinces of Pakistan, the level of trust and compatibility of the trainers remains intact with the community members as well. All social media platforms and other digital forums are open for assistance and facilitation for the trainers. Due to Dil Say Pakistan’s well-established network, our community engagement team and on-ground facilitators are receiving queries regarding future projects by other student bodies and volunteers as well. Report by The Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development; http://mgiep.unesco.org/yespeace-workshop-in-islamabad/