The Muhammad Ali Institute for Peace and Justice advances the work, study, and practice of peacemaking, social justice, and violence prevention through the development of innovative educational programs, training, service, and research. Through the skills, knowledge and experiences we provide, we transform communities by empowering people.
"The 2010 Muhammad Ali Scholars Tour reflects the Youth Charter’s continued international programme of work and the role of sport in its social and human development potential."Dr Mordean Taylor Archer Vice Provost for Diversity and International Affairs, University of Louisville
The work of the Youth Charter with the Muhammad Ali Institute and Center is a remarkable social and cultural legacy of the 2004 New York Olympic Bid.
The 2010 Ali Scholars tour of the UK built on the highly successful 2006 Ali Scholars tour to the North West. The 2006 delegation visited the Youth Charter HQ at Salford Quays and experienced the regeneration and renewal of an area that was unique in its young people and wider community experience. The 2010 tour saw the Ali Scholars hosted in Salford and live on campus as guests of Salford University. The students engaged with campus students as well as the wider community and also attracted young people and community organisations from Salford and beyond. The Ali Scholars also experienced the social and cultural challenges and opportunities reflected in the university’s commitment to an improved intercultural experience. The legacy of the visit allowed the Youth Charter’s community campus and future working relationship with the University to develop a number of exciting community inclusion and student life experiences with a Memorandum of Understanding now in place reflecting the ongoing and future opportunities.
The Ali Scholars Program is a two-year degree supplement program offered by the Muhammad Ali Institute for Peace and Justice for undergraduate students at the University of Louisville. The Program allows scholars the opportunity to gain awareness and insight about violence prevention, conflict resolution and peacemaking in an urban context.
Participants are exposed to the most cogent theories, strategies, and research in the areas of conflict, violence prevention, peacemaking and social justice and will be able to work alongside researchers, educators and activists on campus, in the local community, nationwide and around the world. Through this experience, scholars will become better trained and empowered to take individual action and leadership on issues of peace, violence and conflict.
Through their work with the Muhammad Ali Institute, Ali Scholars acquire a broad understanding of violence prevention, peacemaking and social justice issues and use this understanding to develop their expertise as leaders, activists and agents for social change. The Ali Scholars will develop particular expertise in an area of the work that best connects to their skills, interests and abilities and will conduct a research project in this expert area that will be relevant to the work of violence prevention and peacemaking locally and globally.
One of the biggest challenges facing society today is how to continue to further the momentum achieved by sport in supporting the delivery of the Government's wider social policy. Competition from other leisure and lifestyle activities presents a number of challenges to the traditional sporting pastimes.
To meet these challenges, rugby has recognised the need to be more inclusive and diverse in its attraction to young people from rural, suburban and urban communities.
In 1994 the RFU, as a leading governing body of sport, recognised that a greater emphasis on its role as a social vehicle of change in the lives of young people and the wider community was required. The Youth Charter became the catalyst for this area of work and over the last 12 years has provided the advocacy, support and a better understanding of the language and culture that exists within the community. This assists, as well as formulates, the RFU's current policy and activity at all levels of the game.
The Youth Charter's work over the last 12 years has included the social coach training and development of the RFU's Rugby Development Officers (RDOs), providing them with the tools to re-enter the inner city communities. This has complemented the social inclusion projects and provided us with invaluable knowledge and experience that has now seen the all-important link made with rugby's grass root development and wider community programmes.
The knowledge and experience gained helped the RFU work towards meeting its future strategic aims and objectives. At the Rugby Leader's Conference, held in April 2006, Inclusive Participation was identified as one of the RFU's key strategic areas.
As a result of this journey to date, the RFU has responded to the challenge of equality, diversity and inclusion in both a pro-active and reactive way, by agreeing to a 1% increase of representation at all levels of the game. The impact of this work will be measured against the equality standard framework for sport and the social inclusion community model now being developed by the Youth Charter.
The report that led to the social policy changes that now see more resources invested in young people and communities through sport and the arts. Social inclusion and regeneration projects and programmes, case studies along with invaluable insights into voluntary and agency activity in this challenging but rewarding work. A must tool for public / private sector inclusion and regeneration agencies.