Active Citizenship Club at Shafiq Memorial School Delhi set up by Pravah

The Active Citizenship Orientation workshop at ShafiqMemorialSchoolwas organized from the 23rd of March to the 26th of March.  The workshop was attended by a total of 11 students out of which 9 students remained continuously engaged with the programme while the rest were floating in and out. The group also had 2 girls which was an indication of their interest in participating in the club.  All the students except one come from the Muslim community. One student comes from the Hindu community. Almost all the students come from low economic profile and also have their own shops at Old Delhi. The group is comfortable with hindi. The group is also open and very curious to learn and passionate about initiating a change.

Process : In the first week of March we visited the school and shared with the students the idea of starting a club in their school. The students were excited about the idea and were keen on working on issues like school cleanliness, addressing the issue of late comers, securing the school property and giving equal rights to the girls in the school. Some of them also shared that they wanted to build their confidence levels and their communication skills. We also had a small discussion around why the students wanted to give time to a club apart from their school time. One common reason that came out of the discussion was their vision of a school that helps students discover and nurture their hidden potential such that every student feels proud to be part ofShafiqMemorialSchool. After the initial discussion we designed an orientation workshop where the chief components were exploring self, building skills (listening, assertiveness, communication and goal setting) and drafting an objective and plan for their club. The design was shared with the principal and the school management after which the workshop was implemented in the above mentioned dates.

Workshop Analysis :  The students were a highly motivated group which was indicated by their presence on all four days of the workshop despite having a vacation. The strength of the workshop was that the group emerged as a very strong team who spent a lot of time understanding each others perspectives and building sensitivity towards each other. The students came up with ground rules for their group. Some of them were no cross talking with the group, trusting each other with honest sharing, attempting to change oneself before trying to change someone else etc. The discussions on trust enabled the group to come together as a strong team. The workshop also managed to develop confidence and communication skills among the participants as shared in the feedback. The session on self awareness enabled the students to reflect and share their strengths and areas of improvement. This gave them an opportunity to understand oneself and also each other. The students shared that they were participating in this discussion for the first time and that this has helped them understand the value of sharing. The students also shared that they also got to know new things about the different facilitators. The interaction with the students ofBharatNationalPublic schoolprovided an opportunity to the students to develop their communication skills and their confidence levels. For the students ofShafiqMemorialSchoolsharing before a group of students who are from another school was a huge struggle. However interacting with them and sharing ideas with them enabled the students ofShafiqMemorialSchoolto build their confidence. The interaction also enabled the students to exchange their ideas and get to know more about each other. The discussion was also facilitated around some notions that the two groups had for each other that has changed after this visit. The session on goal setting helped the students to understand the characteristics of a good goal and enabled them to come up with their six months goal for their club. The students have called their club as “The United Students Club”.  Their six months objective for the club is creating visibility of their club and working on projects to initiate change. Some of their planned activities are: –          Cleanliness drive in the school –          Initiating a competition on clean classrooms in order to secure school property and keep the classes clean. –          Taking ownership of the assembly. –          Presenting articles related to school issues in the newspapers. –          Conducting a community mapping projects in order to understand the local community

Action Forward : The students have presented their plan to the school principal who had also given a lot of valuable inputs to the students. The students have also shared the need for a room to conduct their meetings and a locker to keep their resources. The principal and the students are working towards creating a space for the club. Meanwhile the students are working on building a system to stock list the resources and access those resources. We also feel that though the students are passionate about the work some structured mentoring is still a requirement. Hence the idea is to zero down on a month wise theme and work on it in three phases:

1)        Perspective building ( film screening, reading, exposure etc.)

2)        Skill building (Comics, Theatre etc.)

3)        Implementation in the school.

Click Click moments form  the workshop!



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