“Youth Bridging Religious Gaps with their Initiative”
Although people of different faiths have co-existed for centuries in Pakistan, there are still religious and cultural minorities living in isolation and fear of expressing themselves. There is a lack of interaction, little opportunity for dialogue, and many fears about exchanging religious views. This situation increases myths, gaps, and misconceptions about other religions, cultural beliefs, values, and traditions. Most of the perception and knowledge about others people's faith is based on second-hand information, which is often biased and incorrect. The youth of Pakistan want to explore about each other's faiths, traditions, and practices to understand more about each other, but often can't find a safe space for dialogue and exchange of views and ideas.
Keeping these challenges in views, The "Diversity Tour to Worship Places" project seeks to bridge growing gaps among youth of different faith traditions. By pointing out the commonalities of all faiths and fostering interfaith understanding and cooperation, the project aims at creating an environment where religious misconceptions are set aside and relationships and partnerships among diverse youth can be developed for peace and harmony in Pakistan.
While communal violence is interfaith relations at their worst, we know that the most significant motivation against violence is humanization. By bringing these young people together through this project, we're actually creating a space for their to humanize eachother, while can have a transformational affect on how they view the religious 'Other.'" The project will provide unique experience and an opportunity to take a visit to worship places, spend time with their youth and learn more about their faiths, beliefs, practices and customs to explore local diversity develop new relationships and network.
Muslim Mosques, Hindu Mandir, Sikh Gudwaras, and churches (Protestant and Catholic) will be visited as part of these four tours at each local community. Participants from local communities will spend time at each other place of worship where they will be welcomed by the hosting youth of that faith community , an Interfaith Youth in Action (IYA) member and given a guided tour of the site. After visiting they will get chance to discuss and share in dialogue with hosting faith leaders about the site, faith traditions, symbols, history, and commonalities of the particular faith to reduce misconceptions by developing healthy relationships.
1. To build new relationship between youth of different faiths for interfaith dialogues, peace and harmony.
2. To heal the wounds of division and discrimination in the society of Pakistan, and deinventize religious-based violence.
3. To grow in own faith by being exposed to another faith in a safe and respectful environment.
4. To learn how different faiths can live harmoniously together as one nation.
5. To develop acceptance, tolerance and inclusiveness in the society.
1 Promote interfaith dialogue through action and build a safe platform for religiously diverse youth to meet and develop new relationship for reducing misconception, conflicts and future collaboration.
2 To provide the opportunity for 250 young people from different faiths and backgrounds in one year to participate and sharing faith experiences; to get information, exchange views, and learn new facts by visiting places of worship of other religions.
3 To listen and to learn from the way people who follow a particular faith explain or express their own religion or faith.
4 Improve and measure changing opinions on religious diversity through volunteer surveys.
5 Engage local and social media , promoting pluralism to counter divisive rhetoric.