Justice at home and justice abroad: Project of Heart links up with international popular education projects

Project of Heart went back to school for the Fall Institute held at the University of Ottawa in early October. This year the Institute’s theme was “Developing a Global Perspective for Educators“; the goal was to equip Faculty of Education teacher-candidates with tools to integrate human rights and social justice issues into the curriculum.

POH teamed up with Sustainable Lights for Learning and March for Justice to deliver a workshop called “Visual Arts: Drawing Together Global Citizens”. Thirty students gathered to listen, learn, and DO, as they discovered the similarities between the struggles of Indigenous people resisting colonization in Canada with those in northern Uganda and India as they too fight the globalization trend.

Students learned about Canada’s past genocidal attempts at assimilation via the Indian Residential Schools, and acted on their citizenship responsibilities by signing petitions urging our governing authorities to sign the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. As well, participants signed Amnesty International’s petition calling on the government of Canada to address the epidemic of violence against Indigenous women.

The Ottawa U teacher-candidates weren’t afraid to get their hands dirty, in fact, as part of a “Footsteps for Change” activity, they stenciled footprints on hand-woven Indian cotton to create banners that will be flown in 2012 as March for Justice supports the Gandhian movement for land rights through Ekta Parishad in India. For more information about Footsteps for Change, contact footstepsforchange@gmail.com.

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