Atlantis and World Hunger
ATLANTIS AND WORLD HUNGER
Where Are the Opportunities?
Young people undergoing education today by and large lack significant opportunities to make contributions to the well-being of their communities commensurate with their energies and talents. And yet, as has been shown, such activities palpably affirm and enhance oneâ€™s personal confidence and sense of social maturity.
But in practice it mostly comes down to a choice between dropping out and taking a low-level, blind-alley, job in restaurant or factory, or waiting out the educational processes and getting the advanced degree that gains you admission to the more prestigious and better rewarded professional world.
For many young people the professional world will anyway seem a just about hopelessly distant prospect. Lack of money and, no doubt worse, lack of cultural traditions and expectations sufficient to encourage them to aim for the more rewarding choices.
And in a culture that has few outlets for such young people, those marvelous youthful energies are going to get expressed somehow, and lacking exceptional sporting skills, they are likely to be spent in resistance to the frustrations of the educational processes at best, or go sour and fall into the downright anti- social camaraderie of the ganglands at worst.
But there have been educators who have realized that there is every good reason to give young people the chance to participate actively in the kind of social action that benefits their community or other significant need.
A glance through the Wikipedia articles on Student Community Service would show that the kind of altruistic energy needed for this kind of social dedication is to be found in many North American cities.
Atlantis would simply provide more time and facilities for the students, coordinate their activities with their regular studies by making it part of the curriculum, and give its participants increased opportunity of creating even more of an impact with more ambitious, far-reaching projects.
Such a scheme could effectively be adapted as a full scale Atlantis Tutorial Outreach project.
Assuming the tutor is administering a class of 24 students divided into six groups of four, a typical student's contribution might comprise the following:
The tutors first look at the student folders and assess the level of preparedness of the participants.
The first papers would put forward a plan of action for the tutorial or larger group for what the group could accomplish during the term, based on the work accomplished during the first phase.
Ensuing discussions would develop an agreed on agenda and firm plan of action for each tutorial group, coordinated, so far as practical, with the work of other groups in the class.
Activities might include cooperation with existing groups such as CARE, local food markets, development of special inexpensive nutritious menus for local participants, enhancing personal contact with recipients to cover more than food needs, as appropriate,
Public relations would include encouragement of participants beyond the initiating tutorial class.
Preparation of final reports, written and digital, to go to the press, internet, cooperating organizations, and other local, national and international bodies, including even the UN.
Plans for continuing work on the Hunger (Food Gift) Project, recruiting other people to work on similar projects, and extension of the project to other areas.