KARACHI - The participants of first policy dialogue on the Charity for Goodness Monday recommended that banned organizations should not be allowed to operate and should strictly be monitored by the state, says a statement issued by the Institute of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi.

Hosted by Bargad, an organization for youth development, it examined the pressing issue of safe charity.

Academician and Program Director at IBA, Dr. Huma Baqai moderated, proceedings of the policy dialogue, which was attended by representatives of civil society, charity organizations and universities.

The policy dialogue is part of the project, entitled “Charity for Goodness” that also plans launching an awareness and dissemination campaign in selected markets of two districts of Karachi.

It said that senior journalist Mubashir Zaidi emphasized the need to educate general public and make them aware about significance of safe charity.

He said that campaigns have to be launched to provide knowledge of peace-loving religion so that people can give charity to right people. Such efforts should focus on behavioral and mindset changes and promote acceptance and tolerance of others in the society.

Dr Amir Feroz Shamsi from IOBM pointed out that during the policy dialogue there are three areas for mindset development: school, Masjid/madressah, curriculum. The government needs to make changes in curriculum and purge hateful material against communities living in Pakistan. Furthermore, the government should make basic education about society, youth health and self-esteem as part of the curriculum.

Abdul Bari (Youth Activist) said that it was responsibility of the government, corporate sector and the civil society to support awareness to public on what was charity. This should especially focus youth and launch awareness campaigns in educational institutions regarding safe charity.

The government should institutionally engage schools in such campaigns. Muqtadar said that orientation programme on safe charity for teachers of schools, colleges and universities were a must.

He also called upon the civil society to involve local mosques in such efforts adding sensitization of the media was another significant area of intervention.

Mubasher Zaidi was of the view that in order to make a large scale impact, youth should be involved in Social Media campaigns. Attractive and creative slogans and key messages should be developed and publicized. These should be locally relevant i.e. “Charity for Goodness, not for Terrorists or Beggars”.

Academics including Muqtadar Ahmed said that there was compelling need to conduct research studies in order to find linkages between charity and terror financing in the context of Pakistan.

Uzma Noorani said that transportation companies were important stakeholders of the safe charity. The government should ban all random charity collections within vehicles and trains.