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A Community for All, Saving Dreams! Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Cyril France, Ghana Aug 23, 2009
Education , Human Rights , Peace & Conflict   Opinions


One community, one world, let us all build the protective walls, the walls of dignity, freedom, integrity, justice and above all love for the environment and humankind. Attempting to state what community building is, made me delve into a basic meaning of ‘community’. Most appropriately I was intrigued by this meaning - community: a group of people with a common background or with shared interests within a society. On this backdrop if a community, a society, or a nation has a group of persons or people with interests different from that of the common background or shared interest, this may create resistance, hence provoking social, political, and economic disorders. Building a community is not resistance through violence. Community building is about harnessing individual differences to foster sustainable development of all persons.
A community cannot be built effectively when corruption confidently and comfortably walks on our streets without the law taking its full course. Nothing can shape and sustain a community more than minds and hearts determined to think and act right about ourselves, our lives, our relationships, and our world. I yearn for a community where people find social disorders or identify problems, flush out where these problems derive from, and find innovative and integrated solutions to solve these disorders or problems. These issues can range from something as small as trash improperly disposed off in your community to more complicated things such as reducing the amount of drug exploitation or climate change. Hence, the onus is on all persons to create an engaging and enabling environment for members of their communities to want to create change.
The dream of all citizens is to gain redress for basic needs (decent education, health care, water, and sanitation) which are necessary for the very existence of humankind; these attributes are totally unattainable if a community cannot overcome the general conditions of poverty among her members. Poverty and Illiteracy creates a condition which negates if not all or most of the tenets of the United Nations human rights framework. One may ask why unfair trade and inequality exists, why won’t it?, when some nations suffer needlessly for the simple reason that their natural resources are not negotiated well to the benefit of all citizens of that land. If we as a people won’t to build a thriving community then we must highlight the moral repugnance of the world’s yawning social and economic divides. For I see extreme inequality about a system that allows 800 million people to go hungry, while the epidemic of obesity blights million of lives in the rich countries (and increasingly, in cities in the developing countries). A one percentage point increase in growth will benefit poor people more in an equal community/society than in an unequal one. Addressing inequality is essential if communities and countries are to live up to their obligations under the international human rights framework established by the UN, to guarantee equal civil and political rights and to pursue the ‘progressive realization’ of economic, social and cultural rights. Community building does not only mean a radical equitable redistribution of opportunities but also of power and assets to break the cycle of poverty and inequality.



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Writer Profile
Cyril France

Cyril Nii-Offei France is a Development Management student and the Student Representative Council (SRC) Financial Secretary of Ghana Christian University College (GCUC). Mr. France has been zealous in finding sustainable solutions to local and global maladies. Mr. France had the opportunity to engage in mainstream youth-led development such as attending the West Africa Regional Workshop on Youth in Civic Engagement, sponsored by the World Bank Ghana office and subsequently contributed immensely to the E-Consultation on Youth Participation in Poverty Reduction Strategies hosted by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in collaboration with the World Bank Institute.
Mr. France’s audacious and selfless dedication to serve and lead local communities work out their future in a manner that does not compromise the shared benefits for future generations, impelled him to undertake numerous community-based projects with youth-led organizations such as Global Youth Action Network - Ghana, Youth Realities Network, Youth Action Movement, Student World Assembly, among others. Some achievements from this sphere include, Project Coordinator for the Global Youth Service Day (GYSD) 2008, as the National Lead Agency in Ghana. As a key team player Mr. France has worked on several youth-development committee’s and events such as planning committee member responsible for external liaison during the 3dr Annual Student World Assembly, International Convention in Ghana at the University of Ghana, Legon and the 2007 Jubilee Youth Leaders’ Summit at Kumasi.
Mr. Frances’ notable achievements paved the way for his selection to represent his school and country at the 2009 International Student Festival in Trondheim, Norway, he also gave two separate presentations at the 2008 World Youth Congress in Quebec, Canada, and subsequent he was a Rapporteur for the UN-HABITAT’s 2008 World Urban Youth Forum in Nanjing, China. Being part of these global youth engagements augmented his knowledge in emerging social issues, youth-led development, and sustainable livelihoods.
Presently, Mr. France is the Founder and Executive Coordinator of Youth Path, a youth-led development agency.

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