Staying optimistic in uncertain times through building new bridges and common values in a world for everybody

Photo by Leo Wieling via Unsplash

People everywhere want a better world it seems; one in which what is good in us is more realised.  There is a yearning and cry from children, youth, and adults on all continents for a world for everybody, where love and acceptance are possible.  People generally yearn for warmth and the provision of basic needs that satisfy human, mental, and soul needs. With the achievements of the positive and creative potentials of human beings over the ages into our times, a world that navigates uncertain times by building new bridges has remained the legacy of humankind.  The goal is evidently correct, but it is also extraordinarily complex and difficult to agree on how, with limited means in changing situations and with doubtful implications, a world for everybody could be realised. These extend not only to general principles but to how concrete realities should be determined and interpreted. at its annual International Conference held in Geneva from 17 to 19 October 2022 placed the focus of dialogue on Ethics and Values at the Heart of Education.  The nearly 500 participants from over 60 countries of all age brackets present and participating through virtual and live-streaming technology appreciated that our world needs more human connections, trust, and solidarity in shared responsibilities. Participants of course acknowledged increasing polarisation, uncertainty, and widening inequalities in the various fields and agreed that, going forward, more action beyond words is needed to place common values and ethics at the heart of every societal engagement.  Effort must be increased everywhere to lower the temperature of bias and build on our uniting factors. This begins with education. The means the right to education and the freedom to education which is the fullness of life and at the heart of every human settlement.

Current dialogues and debates show how ideological blocks and the “evil in us” continue to drag on, which means that difficulties such as human and ecological factors, environmental challenges, alongside political, economic, social, cultural, and religious differences appear more complex than they are.  Simply put, this is because the human mind and those who manage the affairs of others at all levels have refused to accept common values above common problems as a good solution to the myriad of problems we face. Thus, complexity replaces simplicity. Fear replaces courage. Doubt replaces faith. Hatred and anger replace love and joy, and pessimism hovers over optimism.   

Staying optimistic in navigating uncertain times through building new bridges and common values makes our one world a better place for everybody. The differences between humans and their various environments globally are many. But what unites humanity is more than what may ever divide or plunge humankind into darkness.  With ethics and values, humanity has a new dawn. The time for action is now. It begins with education. 

Obiora Ike Executive Director


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