“The President’s Challenge” in the US is an initiative to mobilise universities toward building appreciative interfaith understanding through community engagement:
I heard many glowing reports from US chaplains at the Global University Chaplains Conference at Yale in 2012.
Judging by the number of NGO and student groups present on the campus during O-Week seeking student volunteers, volunteering among younger people seems to be thriving!
University Hall is actively engaged, with a Philanthropy Fair being organized for March1.
Influenced by the US experience, the interest of Oasis is to facilitate opportunities for useful volunteering projects by mixed faith-cultural groups, so that appreciative intercultural-interfaith understanding takes place in the context of positive activity together, aided by a reflective process.
From the Oasis viewpoint, action-reflection through community volunteering is a preferred model for meeting its vision of “promoting mutual respect and appreciative understanding of diverse religious paths and cultural traditions” rather than merely the usual dialogical model.
We will discuss these issues with Sue Keith from Volunteering SA-NT when she meets with the Oasis Team for lunch in March.