(IGP) Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013 - PIB "Topic : NFCH For Promoting Communal Harmony Proactively"

(IGP) Special Current Affairs Material for IAS (Pre) 2013

Chapter: Gist of Press Information Bureau Articles

Topic: NFCH For Promoting Communal Harmony Proactively

Q.  National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH)?

  • The National Foundation for Communal Harmony (NFCH) is an organization under the aegis of the Ministry of Home Affairs which works towards maintaining communal harmony.

  • NFCH was registered on 19th February 1992 under the Societies Registration Act.

  • The Governing Council (GC) of the Foundation has 24 members, with the Union Home Minister as its Chairman.

  • The mandate of NFCH, inter-alia, includes undertaking programmes for providing assistance to the children of families affected by communal, caste, ethnic or terrorist violence; activities for promotion of communal harmony & national integration and encouraging activities to strengthen the bonds of unity and affinity among different religious and other groups.

  • In the 15th meeting of the Governing Council of the Foundation, held under the Chairmanship of the Union Home Minister on January 6, 2010, it was decided that a five-year ‘Vision Statement’ for NFCH should be prepared by a Committee. NFCH envisages a vision of ‘India free from communal or any other form of violence where all citizens especially children & youth live in peace & harmony’; with the mission ‘Building Communal Harmony, Strengthening National Integration and Promoting Unity in Diversity through collaborative social action, awareness programs, assistance to children affected by violence, interfaith dialogue & leadership for our Shared Security, Peace & Prosperity.’

Q. What are the strategic goals of NFCH?

NFCH strategic goals are:

  • Education & Awareness- Offering and supporting educational programmes for children and youth, public awareness, research and knowledge generation that will facilitate peaceful coexistence, mutual respect and trust;

  • Partnerships & Outreach- Creating greater impact by drawing on shared expertise and commitment of the partners and stakeholders at grassroots, state, national and international levels;

  • Recognition & Awards- Recognizing and awarding outstanding contribut ions of individuals and institutions for communal harmony, social cohesion and national integration;

  • Affirmative action for children affected by violence- Identifying children from communal, caste, ethnic & terrorist violence-affected areas, ensuring their rights to survival, protection, education, vocational training and development; and

  • Resource mobilization- Developing and fostering collaborative efforts including fund-raising with key stakeholders including Government, Public & Private Sectors and Civil Society.

Q. What are the key activities of NFCH?

  • To realize its goals, NFCH undertakes the following key activities:

  • Education & Awareness: This involves organizing seminars, workshops, debates, painting competitions, etc. to reach out to masses; introducing awareness generation programmes at school/university level; organizing an Annual Public Awareness Campaign on Peace & Harmony in partnership with other like-minded organizations; awarding fellowships & financial assistance for studies on communal harmony and national integration; initiating a media campaign for making people aware of the ill consequences of violence and communal clashes and their adverse effects on children and youth; and promoting community celebrations for peace and harmony by organizing interactive get-togethers at festivals and cultural programs.

  • Partnerships & Outreach: It organizes communal harmony campaigns - working with educational, governmental and religious organizations; identifies all the like-minded institutions in the country and makes a directory of individuals and academics who are active in this field; facilitates a ‘Volunteers for Peace & Harmony’ initiative which will provide people, particularly the youth, a chance to work for peace, communal harmony & national integration; partners with VOs/NGOs, RWAs to promote NFCH objectives; and develops and publishes books, films and audio-visuals aimed at promoting communal harmony & national integration.

  • Recognition: NFCH invites nominations to award individuals and organizations working towards promoting communal harmony and national integration; organizes meetings of the Jury, headed by the Vice-President of India and recognizes & awards outstanding contribution of an individual and organization every year.

  • Affirmative Action: NFCH takes affirmative action by way of providing financial assistance to children affected by communal, caste, ethnic and terrorist violence for their education; identifying fresh cases of children affected by societal violence; renewing assistance to existing cases of children and getting evaluation/impact assessment studies conducted.

Q. What is Volunteers for Peace & Harmony programme?

  • NFCH has recently launched the programme ‘Volunteers for Peace & Harmony’ (V for Peace-n-Harmony) to create a network of volunteers. Inspiration to set up a network of volunteers emanated mainly from the Gandhian concept that played a significant role in creating an atmosphere of peace and harmony.

  • The objectives of the Programme are: to create a network of volunteers to act as facilitators/ change agents for promoting social harmony, when peace and social cohesion between communities is disturbed as well as during peaceful times for inclusive development; to spread awareness on peace and harmony in their respective communities and neighborhoods; to strengthen the sense of unity in diversity amongst citizens of the country and to take active participation in the Communal Harmony Campaign Week from 19th-25th of November observed by NFCH every year in the country.

  • The minimum age to be a Volunteer is 15 years and minimum educational qualification is Class 10th. A volunteer is expected to possess the following qualities: love for people of the country, positive attitude, aptitude for knowledge/ skill-sharing and mentorship skills.

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