The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) has cast a light on the transformative effect of Baha’i community-building activities on the lives of young people in Mount Druitt, a neighborhood in Sydney.
In an article titled “The struggle for their streets,” the ABC describes how Baha’i educational initiatives in Mount Druitt are “empowering young people to be the change they want to see in the community.”
The article highlights the vibrant community life that is taking shape through gatherings for prayer, discussion, and music, which has recently given rise to an initiative, titled “Manifold”, to produce songs that express the youth’s highest aspirations for their society.
Speaking with the Baha’i World News Service, Siobhan Marin, the journalist who wrote the article, shares her motivation for covering the story: “It’s always a joy to travel to different parts of Sydney and to meet communities who aren’t often represented in the news with the aim of sharing their story.”
Ms. Marin explains that this neighborhood had recently been negatively portrayed in the media, and her hope is to offer something different. “I was interested in how the local community, particularly youth, are using music and social activities to change the narrative.
“It struck me that the members of Manifold, and others in the community, are not only demonstrating a more positive pathway to youth – one that doesn’t involve drugs, alcohol or violence – they’re also highlighting the goodness that already exists in the area. It was heartwarming to hear about efforts to help younger generations flourish.”
She adds: “And, from the sounds of it, these efforts are not only benefiting kids in the community, they’re also strengthening social cohesion and a sense of pride and respect for the area – amongst the older generations, too.”The article may be read on the ABC website.