Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Participation

Fr TD John brought to my attention, an interesting news item in today's The Hindu.  I could not get the printed copy in the house and so looked it up online.  The title is 'Woman speakers missing here!' The piece laments the absence of women in  a conference discussing women in Islam!
The stage was set and the seminar’s topic was the ‘Role of Muslim Women in the Changing World on national-level’. And the venue was the Urdu Ghar, which is in the heart of the old city at Moghalpura. It might sound empowering, but it lacked something very important: women speakers. How a seminar can be held on the role of women without actually having even one woman to speak on the issue itself was perhaps not lost on the speakers, who participated in the Urdu and Persian seminar here on Tuesday.
While we may find this amusing and even ridiculous, I find it strange when we practice it often and with no second thoughts, especially in dealing with children and young people.  We, grown ups (formators, educators, teachers, staff members) decide for the children what is best for them.  We somehow are convinced that we know best. Perhaps! But perhaps not the best!  Involving the child and the youth makes a huge difference for them.  They grow, become more involved, take up responsibility and make a difference - so do we!  Mistakes and even blunders may happen... but the final or results later in life are worth those mistakes.

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