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Advocacy rather than Charity

160 Irish Student council representatives from Edmund’s Rice's schools all over Ireland gathered in Dublin recently for the first ever student council’s conference . They were encouraged to address the underlying causes of injustice through engagement in advocacy rather than limiting their response to charity. They were addressed by my good friend Brian Bond  who spoke on the work of Edmund Rice International (ERI) in the UN Offices, Geneva,

The students were involved in every stage of the process – a focus group of 12 students were involved in the preparation of the conference, produced the conference reflection booklet, were responsible for registration and the running of the different events.

Using an adaptation of the World Café process, the first session gave teachers and students an opportunity to showcase all the good work being done by students throughout the country and to share ideas and good practice. Each session opened with a presentation from groups of students highlighting one aspect of Edmund’s Rice's spirit in action today. These included student council projects, Edmund Rice advocacy, immersion projects, ER Camps and homelessness.

The day was a huge success, and demonstrated once again students’ ability to organize and produce an informative, challenging and inspiring forum for sharing, discussion and hopes for the future. There are already plans afoot for next year’s student gathering.

cbs meeting


Loved this snap from today's post from my Russian friend

Russion post


Really love the bird picture!

Hope the students learned a lot.
Talk about bullying!
i love that photo!! i am glad i don't see the blue bird's little face. it might be heartbreaking - such a scolding!!
Yes. The poor thing.
The bird picture is stunning!

I note that the Salvation Army have moved increasingly from the 'soup run' approach of old to advocacy based approaches.
For the last 70 years or more primary school kids have taken part in schoolroom collections "for the black babies!.
A strange thought in our increasingly multicultural and mixed race world! :o)
It looks like the baby birds are yelling at the parent (althoough I realize they just want food.)