For the past few years, I have been working with and teaching with Taking It Global, an organization based in Toronto. We work with administrators, educators and students, alike, shifting the current education paradigm to one with global perspective and empathy. A few weeks ago, I awoke in San Francisco at 5 am to teach our course, Education for Social Innovation, remotely to a cohort in Poland. Last week, participants signed in from various locales in Eastern Europe as I sat in a hotel in Nashville. I sometimes have to “pinch myself” when I think about how connected I am, we are, Away 2 Be is to the rest of the world. As our ability to access one another increases, so does our ability to create change in the world. Below is a message I wrote to our cohort after our last session and after being on the road for three weeks:
Hello, everyone! I’m finally headed home after a three-week “tour” and thought of you and our course often. I was able to connect with a sustainable eco-retreat in the Costa Rican jungle, private schools and students in the US taking the first steps toward Global Citizenship and Global Education, and NGOs collaborating with one another locally and globally.
The places I went and the people I engaged with reminded me of the power of community and our ability to find innovative solutions to when we collaborate with one another. I was affirmed in the work we are all doing because I know that I am not alone.
I look forward to our next session and hearing about the conversations you are having in your classrooms regarding the social problems your students hope to solve on local and/or global levels. I have often used the UN Millennium Development Goals to facilitate such conversations. As I’m sure you’re aware, 17 new goals were recently developed at the UN Sustainable Development Summit. And thus, the question prevails for all of us, “How do we create global change locally?”
Thank you for all you already do in your schools and communities. Ultimately, your efforts do create a positive impact on the world.