Charied by Tim Miller, who is coordinating this project, the programme considered greater dialogue between different communities in the UK and in particular the opportunites for young people to expand their boundaries by challenging conscious or unconscious bias while working together for a common service project. There were presentations by Professor Lord Bhikhu Parekh, Carole Stone CBE, Anthea McIntyre, Sheikh Nuru Mohamed, Baroness Sandip Verma, Paul Gutteridge, Initiatives of Change CEO, and Keith Best, UPF - UK Chair of Trustees. (Video of the Programme)

This was an opportunity to introduce to a wider audience a proposal by Universal Peace Federation UK to establish a series of Youth Service Projects in the United Kingdom, which would enable 18 to 30 year-olds to collaborate with their peers from a variety of ethnic, religious and social backgrounds, while developing altruism, friendship beyond difference and learning associated with effective community service. The details of the programme are still being discussed so it is an exciting time to come on board and help us in its design. We have a growing panel of public figures who will be ‘patrons’ to promote the project.

There is also a group of activists from a variety of ethnic and religious backgrounds with connections to youth and experience in project management who will collaborate to bring this proposal into reality during 2021-22.

Programme:

4th February, 2021

  • 18:00 Introduction - Tim Miller (UPF - UK Trustee)
  • 18:03 Opening Remarks - Keith Best (UPF - UK Chair of Trustee Board)
  • 18:06 Outline of the Proposed Youth for Peace and Development Project - Tim Miller
  • 18:08 Learning from Past Projects Religious Youth Service (RYS) Video/Slides - Dr David Earle (UPF - UK Trustee and UPF Birmingham)
  • 18:20 Baroness Sandip Verma - Chair, UN Women UK 18:24 Testimonies from Service Projects
  • 18:33 Developing the Project - Robin Marsh and Margaret Ali
  • 18:43 Statements of Support from ‘Patrons’: Professor Lord Bhikhu Parekh, Carole Stone CBE, Anthea McIntyre and Sheikh Nuru Mohamed
  • 18:55 Questions and Comments: Including Paul Gutteridge (CEO of Initiatives of Change)

It is intended that a UK launch project in early 2022 probably in London or Birmingham, will be followed by several local projects during the remainder of 2022 in different parts of the UK, where participants can implement the skills they have learned with the support of project mentors. Those who fulfil local projects successfully would be invited to a Youth Achievers Awards ceremony in Parliament for recognition of their accomplishment.

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