Southern Africa Regional Meeting on Global Citizenship Education convened in Johannesburg, South Africa

Southern Africa Regional Meeting on Global Citizenship Education convened in Johannesburg, South Africa

(Original article: UNESCO Office in Harare.  July 5, 2016)

In a globalized and interconnected world with increasing manifestations of both solidarity and intolerance, technological power and environmental disruption it is becoming critical that education systems equip learners with values, knowledge and skills that are based on and instill respect for human rights, sustainable development, and health and well-being.

It is within this context that the UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa (ROSA), in collaboration with the UNESCO Headquarters and the South African National Commission for UNESCO, organized a Southern Africa Regional meeting on Global Citizenship Education, in Johannesburg, South Africa on July 4-5, 2016.

The meeting brought together 50 representatives from government and civil society organizations working in the areas covered by GCED in the nine countries covered by the UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa. Mr Yousuf Gabru, Chairperson of the South African National Commission, opened the meeting posing an imperative question, “Can you have normal education in an abnormal world?” and ROSA Director and Representative, Professor Hubert Gijzen, echoed this with the recognition that “The world is alarmingly out of balance,” noting both the imbalances between people and planet, and between the wealth and living standards of people.

The overall objectives of the workshop were to map country initiatives on what are considered to be global citizenship education related activities and to orient key stakeholders on global citizenship education. On the first day, hosted at the University of Witwatersrand, the UNESCO publication “Rethinking Education: Towards a Global Common Good?” was launched for the region and participants discussed its implications for education in the region. The meeting also focused on both the intellectual and practical challenges of conceptualizing global citizenship education, and provided time for country representatives to discuss the current frameworks and gaps in their global citizenship education efforts. On the second day, the programme looked at integrating Human Rights Education, Education for Sustainable Development with the Global Citizenship Education notions, in response to the broad objectives of SDG Target 4.7.

[icon type=”glyphicon glyphicon-download-alt” color=”#dd3333″] Read the full remarks of Prof Hubert Gijzen, Regional Director and Representative, UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa

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