Tasks for the NINEISMINE core teams in school
Ensure that the tone of the campaign is maintained. It is rights based campaign that attempts to keep our governments accountable to their promise of ending poverty and hunger by the year 2025 (and halving it by 2015). Being a children’s – campaign, children’s participation and ideas should be actively supported. The voices of vulnerable children are central to the campaign and therefore platforms must be provided to these children to speak for themselves. Avoid the temptation to speak on behalf of vulnerable children since many of us urban children would not have experienced hunger and poverty first hand. Look out for ways to ensure that vulnerable children are active members of your planning teams and clubs.
Children are invited to avoid any confrontational stance. Seek to dialogue. Invite UPA partners to keep their promise of 9. In such states we invite politicians to the campaign by informing them that we desire to mold public opinion towards creating a positive situation towards the realization of their promise of 9. While engaging opposition party members we invite them to support us by playing the role of the opposition namely to keep governments accountable to their promises. The ultimate aim of the campaign is to ensure that children learn the art of engaging actively in democratic processes.
While initially the campaign is focused on promises related to budgetary allocations, quality education for all with an emphasis on primary education and health with a focus on primary health facilities for all. At each juncture a keen eye must be kept to ensure that these facilities are the accessible to children at risk like those who belong to vulnerable groups like our dalits and adivasis.
- Popularize and coordinate the signature campaign. (ask for these cards from firstname.lastname@example.org or NINEISMINE PO box 749 Chandigarh 19
- Take a photograph of your school fellow students supporting the NINEISMINE campaign.
- Invite your school photography clubs and those interested in photography to take photographs of vulnerable children in your city/town/village. They could take other photographs that remind of the call for nine, like 9 children, 9 pencils, the clock at 9, etc. Research on which groups of children are particularly vulnerable in your state. Try and get these children represented in the photo campaign.
- Link up with students across the globe inviting them to send in photographs to show their support for the campaign. Aim at getting all nations represented.
- Translate material of the NINEISMINE into your local state languages particularly those of the lesser known dialects and mother tongues. (Begin with translating Wada Na Todo, NINEISMINE, Promise of nine and MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY.)
- Design an Indianized version of the white band, which is the symbol of the global MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY campaign.
- Redesign the NINEISMINE logo to represent local issues, concerns and culture. For example, adivasi children of Gujarat are considering replacing the tri-colours with the adivasi colours of red (land), green (forests) and blue (sky).
- Think of innovative ways to popularize the movement in your state. (Blain Dlyma from Mumbai and Nalin D’Souza from Delhi are considering designing T-shirts, Priyanka Dey and Ishita Bhattacharya from Delhi are planning to hold workshops on white band making with tricolor beads.)
- Search for connections among your school students, staff and ex-pupils, for contacts with other schools, the media, celebrities, folk artists, social activists, government officials and politicians seeking their support for the call of nine.
- Paint your village walls with a symbol of NINEISMINE using simple chuna (lime).
- Invite yourself and your friends to Facebook group and Facebook cause.
- Design 9 minute assemblies to invite your fellow students to the campaign and also as lead ups to important days of the campaign. Hold these in your schools and other schools in your village/town/city/state. You may wish to use the sample assembly demonstrated by the students of St. Mary’s, Mount Abu.
- Hold the three minute assembly in each of the classes of your school. Reaffirming each student’s participation in the campaign.
- Introduce schools in other cities and districts of your state to the campaign. Try to connect with children in government schools and also those out of school. Connecting with Child focused NGOs may be a good idea.
- Form yourselves into different department, namely media, publicity, P.R., computer technology etc. Allocate different responsibilities among each of you and report the progress made by each of you at each weekly meeting.
- Create a signature tune or a jingle for the campaign. (Children in Australia have composed an English version of the song, Mount Abu has nearly finalized its Hindi version and children in Mandal are considering composing one in Gujarat/Gamit.) Insure these songs are catchy, wherever possibly culturally significant and easy enough to translate into other languages.
- Design and sport a T-shirt. (Students in Chandigarh had invited their fellow students to bring in their old T-shirts upon which they promptly spray painted the logo of the campaign.)
- Use Festive occasions to promote the cause of nine, like creating NINEISMINE rangolies during Diwali and pooja pandals with the NINEISMINE theme.
- Interact with the poor to understand their experiences of poverty and exclusion, seek their permissions to have these stories printed in the local newspapers as their call for nine.
- Send articles on monthly biases to the local press so as to keep them updated as well as to build up your connections in preparation for the major haul in January. Send a copy of these printed reports to the NINEISMINE office in Chandigarh. (P.O. Box 749)
- Engage with local child rights activists and NGOs to get an alternative perspective on local issues of child rights concerns and abuses.
- Be alert to local issues of child right abuses particularly those in a relation to education and health and be prompt to respond to these through letters to the editor of newspapers, etc. Or even through silent demonstrations (Children in Chandigarh organized a candle light sing song at their city center to express their disapproval of 10 Crores of rupees being awarded to our victorious world cup cricket team but which was from state education funds.)
- In Kolkata, Sudarshan Mishra intends organizing nine small clay piggy-banks (money boxes) in which he hopes to invite children to contribute a 1 Rupee coin each. This he plans to present to the Finance minister as a children’s contribution towards waking the NINEISMINE a reality. The focus of his collection is not fund raising rather than making a political statement.