India has historically been a home to many religions, having been the birthplace of at least 4 major religions in the world today, i.e., Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, and Sikhism. Additionally, it is home to a large Christian, Muslim, and Parsi population. Delhi in particular, being the capital of India, is a melting pot of different religions, ethnicities and cultures.

In spite of this diversity and the discourse of tolerance propounded by the Constitution of India in its promotion of secular ideals, there has been a history of interfaith violence in this country. Communal conflict between members of different communities has occurred intermittently in the decades since India became an independent country, fuelled by a tide of misinformation and misrepresentation of the “Other” that has led to the formation of stereotypes and prejudices in society.

Young people, in particular, have been inclined to engage in violent behaviour. It is easy to influence the impressionable minds of the young; voices of divide speak to their desires, struggles and confusion with the world. Social media, television and print media, thus, all serve as provocative forums that often times incite violence.

The mobilization of the youth for violent purposes is, therefore, a major problem, especially in a country like India which has the highest youth population in the world. The haze of confusion and misinformation that surrounds the young people of this country must, thus, be targeted.

It is crucial to educate the young in critical thought and analysis in order to enable them to begin critically questioning the world around them. This will then invite deeper engagement with important issues like religion and communalism, as individuals begin to understand and analyse what is happening around them, who is orchestrating the events, who and what is dictating the overarching narratives of conflict.

The 3 days program on Youth and Interfaith Peace Building seeks to enable the young participants to become critically aware citizens as they learn to cut through stereotypes and prejudices, both their own and those held in the larger society.

The training is geared toward developing tolerance between different religious communities by encouraging an active interaction between members of these communities. A team of experienced facilitators will initiate the participants in a discussion on faith at the personal, cultural and social levels, and educate them in the principles of interfaith harmony and peace building skills, important tools for them to use in building a just, equitable and free world.

In a land of so many different faiths, sects, cultures, and languages, it is important to take the step beyond tolerating each other’s existence to understanding one and another, the histories we come with, and the cultures we represent. Thus, interfaith peace building will enable us to move toward fulfilling a shared responsibility for the world around us.

Program Details

Day 1: 8th September 2017( Friday)  Time: 3-6 pm

  • Introduction and Ice Breaking
  • Context Setting
  • Interfaith peace building
    o Introduction to conflict, violence and peace. (STEP Team)
    o What is religion? What is spirituality? (STEP Team)
    o Religion: Personal, Cultural and Social. (STEP Team)
  • Critical Media Literacy for Culture of Peace (STEP Team)

Day 2: 9th September 2017 Time: 10 am – 5 pm

  • Training in filmmaking- Anuj Chopra
  • Field visit (STEP Team)
    • 3 participants per group will make a short movie on “Interfaith Harmony”. There will be 10 movies in total.
    • Participants will visit various religious spaces and interact with religious leaders, learning more about what each religion speaks about peace in their own context.
  • Editing and reviewing of the films produced by the participants.

Day 3: 10th September 2017 Time: 10 am – 5 pm

  • Interaction with experts from different religious background
    o Syncretic tradition and cultures- Dhruv Sangari and Yusuf Sayeed
    o Communalism- Ram Puniyani
    o Islam and Peace- Basit Jamal
  • Planning for way forward – Film festival and Wall of Peace (STEP Team)
    o After the training, the youths will continue to work on enriching their film content.
    o One of the outcome of this program is based on their exploration of faith, they will go and interact with people at different religious spaces on what their religion says about living in harmony with other religions.
  • Distribution of certificates

21st September 2017 (International Day of Peace)

STEP’s Jashn E Aman 2017- Towards Sanmati- Narratives of the in between and beyond
Time: 8pm-9pm

Venue: India Habitat Centre

  • Film Screening and discussion on Interfaith Harmony
    Time: 2pm-4pm
    Venue: Different religious places
  • Participants will visit different religious places and interact with people on what their respective religions profess about living in harmony with other religions. This conversation will happen through the “Wall of Peace” (flex), a silent dialogue, where people will write down their views. After getting the people wrote on the wall fo Peace, this will flex will travel to other religious places and have people read and respond to it.

Venue

Venue: Delhi Metropolitan Education
Affiliated to GGS IP University
B-12 Opposite to IBM B-19 Building
Sector 62 Noida, Uttar Pradesh-201301

About the Organisation

Standing Together Enable Peace (STEP) Trust is a non-profit organization established in Delhi in 2009. Our vision is to work towards building a free, just, non-violent, sustainable, equal and mindful society through education, advocacy and action. We work mostly with teachers, youth and children, especially those in at risk communities, to directly empower leadership and innovation.

Eligibility Criteria:

Participants should be between the age of 18-25 years old.
Participants are required to commit in completing the 3 days of training.
Participants are required to complete the registration form.

Registration

Link this link to register.

After completing and submitting the form, the organiser will reach out to you to confirm your participation.

There is no registration fee.

Lunch will be provided during the training at the venue of training

Contact

For any queries please contact Samuel Poumai – +91 9555393424 Indraneil Chaudhury – +91 8750150403

For more details please write to interfaith.steptrust@gmail.com or contact at +91-9555393424

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