Asia / Pacific

Photo: CWS-P/A

Locations

Sindh, Punjab, Pakistan

Investment

USD $53,002

Pakistan Civic Education Program

In a region of the world where politics and humanitarian concerns are critical, it is important that people have a grasp of socio-political and human rights issues and democratic culture. More to the point, it is important for the future of Pakistan that its citizens – particularly its young people – understand the importance of pluralism, the ideals of democracy, cultural diversity and participatory citizenship. Change will only come when people realize that many existing structures and systems are fostering injustice, hatred and intolerance.

With that in mind, CWS’s Civic Education Program has conducted four summer camps – two each in Punjab and Sindh, in Pakistan – which included workshops on human rights and peace; exposure visits to historical and informative places of Punjab and Sindh; and other activities related to political and civic education. The focus of the program is to enhance knowledge and awareness on human rights, peace, democracy and gender issues. Nearly 500 people participated.

Participants in the initiative include young people and teachers. Discussion of child rights is a part of the mix, and several participants said it was the first time they had heard the idea of child rights. Overall, many said the experience was eye-opening. One participant said, “To me, politics is another name for violence and suppression of rights, but here I got another picture of politics. It actually gives us power to solve our issues peacefully.”