Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Youth Leadership, Sustainability and Ethics

Earth Charter International secretariat and Youth Action for Change organize a free online short course on “Youth Leadership, Sustainability and Ethics”. The course takes place in August 12 - September 9. This course is part of YAC’s series of educational online courses.

With a mission of “Education in Action”, YAC is the world’s leading and pioneering provider of free, online, action-focused educational courses and opportunities in a vast array of subjects providing young people in developing nations with the knowledge and tools they need to make change happen, supporting and empowering them to realize their vision of a fairer, safer and more equitable world.

Earth Charter International secretariat is happy to get an opportunity to conduct a short course with YAC!

Course Dates and times:

Course Description:

The problems of today’s world are more complex than ever. They are highly interconnected and interdependent. We face climate change, vast exploitation of natural resources, population growth, growing gap between rich and poor, and social inequity, among many others. To be able to respond to these challenges future leaders need a new and innovative interdisciplinary approach.

The short course aims to support the participants to realize their role as leaders for more sustainable future and to help them to learn what the common, global values are. The aim is that after the course the participants are aware of the principles for sustainability and they will comprehend how those can be used as a tool on individual and organizational level. The course drives for positive change in participants’ everyday lives and creates a sense of global responsibility.

The ultimate aim is to further develop the capabilities necessary to conduct Earth Charter inspired action projects in the participants’ own communities and link the participants with the wider youth community working for more sustainable future.

The course is delivered using a number of online technologies that are available for use by the general public and for free.

The Action Guidelines
  • Start with the Earth Charter. Let the Earth Charter be your basic guide when you are planning and undertaking activities to make the Earth Charter vision a reality.
  • Be a Living Example. Strive to be a living example of the spirit of the Earth Charter in your day-to-day life – at home, in the work place, and in your community.
  • Empower Yourself. Act boldly, and trust that you can make a difference as an individual and that your activities will catalyze the efforts of many others.
  • Cooperate, Cooperate. Create the power to affect change by building partnerships and collaborating with others, and seek win/win solutions.
  • Empower Others. Share power by being inclusive and providing others with opportunities to strengthen their capacities for problem solving, decision-making, and leadership, unleashing human creativity.
  • Promote Respect and Understanding. Endeavor to build relationships of mutual respect and trust among individuals and groups from diverse cultures and communities, and resolve differences through dialogue in a way that produces learning and growth.
  • Facilitate Self-Organization. Facilitate the spread of initiatives inspired by the Earth Charter without trying to control them, counting on the capacity of human groups with a clear ethical purpose to self-organize and achieve positive outcomes.
  • Focus on Root Causes. Focus thought and action on the root causes of the major problems and challenges facing humanity, and do not let the pressures of existing unsustainable systems and practices deter you from action.
  • Be Committed Yet Flexible. Be unwavering in your commitment to fundamental principles and ensure that the means adopted to achieve your goals are consistent with Earth Charter values, but always be flexible and innovative in selecting means and methods as circumstances change.
  • Be Resourceful. Do not let your thinking and acting be restricted by dependence on money; use your imagination and be resourceful in making things happen.
  • Use Technology Wisely. Be mindful that large numbers of people do not have access to advanced technology, and when constructing technological solutions to problems ensure that they are appropriate.
  • Protect the Integrity of the Charter. When presenting, quoting from, or translating the Earth Charter be faithful to the words and spirit of the original text, and link the Charter only with organizations, products and events that are consistent with its values and vision.