Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Process of Making a Difference

Over the last few weeks the students in my Peace Studies class have been identifying issues which interest them so that they can develop a plan of action to try to address the issue. They have now created their action plans and are attempting to raise awareness and to make a difference, if only a small one. The sheer fact that they are trying to make a difference is a step forward. It has been exciting to see the range of topics being explored- from packaging food that was made but never served in our dining hall and sending it to local food kitchens to addressing adult illiteracy to protesting against puppy mills.  


Each student is expected to identify and analyze:
* the causes of the issue and its history
*  the organizations (Governmental and/or Non-Governmental (NGOs) working in the area of their issue. They must identify and discuss:
§  who they are;
§  what they are doing;
§  what their successes are;
§  what obstacles they face;
§  and whether or not they making progress and how one  can tell.
·        They must describe the criteria they are using to gauge success- use of philanthropic dollars, impact on the problem, education, rehabilitation, placement of those who are oppressed (ex. places to live for those who are homeless), other?
* any other people who are involved with the issue and what they are doing. What is working? What isn’t? Why?
*how the issue relates to peace, social justice, and non-violence, as well as why the issue is important. Why should we care about it?

The culmination of this project is a multimedia presentation of their analysis of the items above as well as their analysis of the action plans and their effectiveness. 

These students would benefit from feedback. Those who have social media sites so far can be reached at: 
AIDS in South Africa 

Please encourage these students with your questions and reactions.