By Jusdanis Alexander
By Jusdanis Alexander
Rabat – The Mohammedia Association of Scholars in Salé has announced the launch of a series of workshops to curb the influence of religious extremism on Moroccan youth.
The project, named ‘Ishraq’ [‘Sunshine’], consists of workshops aiming to “strengthen the values of tolerance and moderation in the classes young men and women” through skills- and culture-based education intended to bolster them against “breaches of values and behaviors,” writes in the association in a press release.
The courses seek to provide children aged 10 to 19 with a “moral, educational, and communicative framework […] rooted in our national, religious, aesthetic values.” The association stresses that the workshops aim to equip students not just cross-cultural understanding and technical skills but also with “the spirit of responsibility and initiative” and “the values of love and tenderness.”
The Ishraq workshops are held by the association in partnership with UNESCO, with support from the Japanese embassy in Rabat.
“This integrated project envisages the promotion of a culture of tolerance and moderation through the creation of a network of youth leaders to combat violent extremism and support the most vulnerable adolescents and young people […] through the development of life skills,” says the association.
Classes in the first unit of the project, ‘Al Fitra’, have focused on cultural and linguistic comparisons between Asian societies, daily life in China, Korea, and Japan, personal growth, self-confidence, the concept of the self, methods of self-assessment and of trusting others, the fundamentals of success, creative thinking and critical thinking, and communications.
The organization also held a workshop on journalism, featuring instruction in reporting, writing, editing, and digital media. The association aims to expand the program’s draw by incorporating the use of video games and graphic novels.
Teachers of the workshops have included Fatiha Ghazi, Iman Addouabi, Kaoutar Bouiji, and Sofia Al Mesari.
The association says the program works to “strengthen children’s culture of human rights in order to foster a positive influence in their classrooms, in accordance with the International Convention on the Rights of the Child, which reflects common human values with world religions, including Islam.”