Global Citizenship Programme

In the Indian context by which Identity are we as individuals normally recognised? Predominantly we are our identities are recognised by our Caste, by our Religion or by our Region and by our culture. Rarely is our identity recognised by our Civic Identity. This has been neglected from the time of our independence. The Constitutions of India are enshrined with the goal of stressing our “Indianness” over caste, religion, region and culture and we are now called upon to stress this Civic Identity our Indian Identity which the authors of our constitution have offered us. This is how Fr. Aloysius Irudayam SJ began his session as part of the consultation on Global Citizenship jointly organised by JEA and ADO on the 14th and 15th at ISI New Delhi. The meeting was attended by the Zonal PCE coordinators and the PCEs of the Central Zone Provinces.

Global Citizenship is a Programme that the Universal Society is promoting through schools. The importance of this programme is further strengthened in the context of the situation in India highlighted by the JCSA statement. The Global Citizenship programme aims at developing a citizenship perspective in our students with a focus on poverty, social justice, constitution, governance and rights and ecology. The JEA in Partnership has explored possibilities over the last 8 months and organised this consultation to promote Global Citizenship in our schools. Jesuits in South Asia have been systematically working on these areas over the last two to three decades and this consultation offered an opportunity to bring together these Jesuits on a common platform to promote the programme. The consultation began with an address by Fr. John Chathanat SJ on the goal and challenges of Education in South Asia.  Fr. Robert Athickal SJ  who has promoted TARUMITRA,an organisation working on ecological and environment concerns with a UN status and Fr. LancyD’Cruz and his team member Mr. Jothi who lead on the Gujarat Jesuit Ecology Mission, engaged the group on the 14thto share their programmes on the ecological concerns of our planet and how it affects us in South Asia and the way in which they are addressing it through awareness, education, action and campaigns. The deliberations then progressed into possibilities of collaboration with Jesuit Schools in South Asia with and action plan for 2018-19.

The 15th was devoted to an understanding of the Human Rights Education Programme as promoted by Fr. Aloysius IrudayamSJ and assisted by Fr. Cyril Anthony SJ. The sessions covered the development and spread of the programme, the ideology and pedagogy and the possibilities of becoming an integral part of the Jesuit schools. The session ended with a proposed plan for 2018-19 for the Central Zone Provinces.

With this consultation on Good Citizenship focussing on Constitutions, Democracy and Rights and on Ecology and Environment the JEA has initiated the planning process for the Global Citizenship Programme for the schools in South Asia and hopes to launch the programme for the  year 2018-19.

The PCEs of the Central Zone Frs. Florence, P J James, Eugene, Alban and Tony, with the leadership of Fr. Ajit Xess met on the 16th to finalise the Global Citizenship Programme for their provinces. We look forward to the launch in the beginning of the academic year.

Sunny Jacob SJ