International GLOBAL CITIZEN’S AWARD
 
 

FAQS

Please note that this is a new and developing programme still in its pilot stage. Some changes may take place in details as the programme develops.

What is the Award programme?
What do we mean by “global citizen” anyway?
Who is the programme for?
How good a global citizen do you need to be to receive the award?
What does it consist of?
How much time does it take to do the programme?
Some activities seem to come under several headings. Is this all right?
What is “international” about the programme?
Do I need to travel abroad to participate in the programme?
How does the programme operate?
How do I join the programme?
Does it cost anything to join?
What do I get at the end?


What is the Award programme?

The International Global Citizen’s Award programme is a new programme to encourage and recognise the development of people as global citizens.

It is
• voluntary
• non-competitive
• open to young people (aged 11 and above) and adults

During the programme, people become
• more engaged and active as global citizens
• better informed about certain global issues and concerns
• more reflective about what it means to be a good global citizen
• and, we hope, better global citizens

During the programme, you will be engaged in interactions with people from different backgrounds and cultures, active as a global citizen, and reflecting on your developing and changing knowledge, outlook and attitudes. You will look at aspects of your everyday life and how, in this global world, they impact upon other people and the environment. You will make some changes in aspects of your everyday life as a result. Although the idea is that you will acquire new knowledge during the programme – probably quite a lot - you cannot do the award programme simply by reading and finding out information – it is not another subject with tests and exams. It is about becoming a more informed, principled and involved global citizen.

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What do we mean by “global citizen” anyway?

The term “global citizen” is quite a new one, and it is used in different ways in different contexts.

In the IGC Award we are concerned with “citizenship” as indicating responsible membership of society, in general – being aware that our actions impact on the lives and well-being of others, and on the environment, and acting accordingly, and taking a measure of responsibility for the society of which we are part. Global citizenship simply places this on a global scale. It implies awareness in everyday life, that we are influenced by and influence things beyond our own country, on a global scale.

For those who like more formal definitions, the development charity Oxfam sees the Global Citizen as someone who:

• is aware of the wider world and has a sense of their own role as a world citizen
• respects and values diversity
• has an understanding of how the world works
• is outraged by social injustice
• participates in the community at a range of levels, from the local to the global
• is willing to act to make the world a more equitable and sustainable place
• takes responsibility for their actions
(Education for Global Citizenship: A Guide for Schools, published Oxfam GB, 2006)
The IGC Award is concerned with this understanding of “global citizen”.

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Who is the programme for?

The programme is open to young people aged at least 11. (Local centres may have their own minimum age). However, adults are encouraged to become involved as participants too. We are all global citizens – whatever our age - and we can all become better global citizens –however old we are!

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How good a global citizen do you need to be to receive the award?

The purpose of the award programme is to encourage and recognise our development as global citizens, not to recognise how good we are as global citizens.

People will start the programme with different levels of action, engagement, knowledge and experience as global citizens. What matters is that there is a commitment to work to become a better global citizen during the period of the award programme. The award recognises this commitment and development, not the standard reached.

However, as a safeguard, there are certain things which could disqualify someone from receiving the award. People who act in racist ways during the award programme, for instance, would not be eligible to receive an award.

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What does it consist of?

There are four distinct elements of the programme, which relate to key activities as global citizens.

• Understanding other cultures and outlooks

• Personal Global footprint
o Being good with money
o Environmental responsibility

• Influence and involvement with others
o Personal community service
o Advocacy, persuasion or promotion
o Active participation in decision-making

• Recording and reflecting on personal change and development

Participants commit to engaging and developing in each of the different areas. You participate for a minimum of six months to be eligible for an award at “bronze” or first level. After the bronze level you can proceed to the silver level, after a minimum of 6 months more (i.e. at least 12 months altogether), and, after a minimum of 6 further months (a total of 18 months minimum), to a gold level award.

You must begin with bronze level, and if you wish to continue, work your way through silver, then gold.

Silver and gold awards are considerably more demanding - they are not just a few months more of the same thing.

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How much time does it take to do the programme?

The average time commitment is 1½ - 2 hours per week. So for bronze level, the total time is around 40 – 50 hours; an additional 40-50 hours for silver, and a further 40-50 hours for gold.

Some activities, such as community service, might involve a longer block of time in a week, but then you would spend less time in other weeks. But the idea is that you should be doing something related to the programme regularly over an extended period, and have time to reflect, think and learn. You cannot cram everything into a few weeks, no matter how hard you try!

You may already be doing things which can count towards the programme. For instance, if you are keen on watching films, you may simply need to reflect on some of the films you would be seeing anyway to develop your understanding of other cultures and outlooks. You may already be involved in a service activity which would count towards the community service requirement. In these cases, the extra time needed to participate in the programme will be less. However, you will find that you will do some new and different things as part of the programme. This is essential if you are to develop as a global citizen, and that is what the programme is all about!

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Some activities seem to come under several headings. Is this all right?

It is perfectly acceptable to undertake activities which come under two or more headings. In fact, this can be a very effective way of engaging in the programme, as it brings the different elements together.
For instance, community service might be leading a conservation project to clear a local area of litter (trash) and debris. This could count as both service and environmental awareness. If the participant also led a meeting to plan the project, then this would be an example of participation in decision-making.
The total time involved in this whole project might easily be 10-12 hours, and these could be apportioned to the relevant areas of the programme.

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What is “international” about the programme?

• It is offered in different countries
• It has been developed with input and ideas from different countries and perspectives
• Centres share information and ideas, so there is a wider perspective.

With something like this award in global citizenship it seems particularly important and appropriate that there is an international dimension.

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Do I need to travel abroad to participate in the programme?

The programme follows the familiar principle:

Think globally, Act locally.

You do not need to travel abroad to do the programme, although if you are travelling anyway, then this can be incorporated into the programme.
All aspects of they programme can be met without leaving your own country, although you will be finding out about other cultures and countries.

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How does the programme operate?

The award programme is operated and run by individual local centres. Each recognised centre makes its own awards, but the award programme in each centre follows the same general international model.

Having the same international model means that people all over the world know that they are engaged in the same programme. But local centres can make sure the programme runs in a way relevant to the context of that particular country and centre.

Interactions between centres are encouraged, and input form another centre is required before gold awards are made. This strengthens the international aspect of the programme.

Another important feature of the programme is that it involves all participants - young people and adults - in the running of the programme and in the making the awards: this is not an award programme run by adults for young people. Each centre works out precisely how this is done.

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How do I join the programme?

You can only take part in the programme through a recognised local centre. Each centre operates the programme in its own way, and may have particular arrangements about when people can start the programme, etc.
If your school is interested in becoming a centre, then please see the Information for Schools section on this website for further details. Contact info@globalcitizensaward.org

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Does it cost anything to join?

Participants: Ask your local centre about the charges involved.

Centres: please see Information for schools

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What do I get at the end?

If you successfully complete the programme - and remember you do not have to reach any particular standard to do this – you will receive a certificate and some other form of recognition. This depends on the individual centre. A small charity donation is also made to a charity of your choice. However, the main thing is your development as a person, and as a global citizen!

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January 2007 updated October 2011

 

 
 

 

 

The International Global Citizen’s Award
E: info@globalcitizensaward.org