On Tuesday 27 April, Forward Thinking convened a Pathways into Politics workshop with Mohamed Okda. Pathways into Politics is an initiative that aims to develop the political literacy, leadership, and communication skills of young British Muslims through regular engagement with political figures from a range of backgrounds.
During the session, participants identified the values that are most important to them, their purpose that motivates them to reach their goals, and the specific conduct necessary for doing so. Following this, Mohamed encouraged the group to identify a common set of values, purpose and conduct they see as necessary for working together on a joint platform. By identifying these three elements before entering into coalition with others, it will be possible to work together effectively to reach common goals.
Key themes emerged during the discussion. Several participants placed emphasis on the importance of acting with intention, for example, examining whether a specific decision is aligned with the goals and values identified and considering another approach if this is not the case. Another point raised was in relation to the idea of taking action, no matter how large or small, to ensure that you are contributing to the better development of society. Participants noted the actions they are currently undertaking to enact their values and reflected on other ways in which they could put their values into practice.
Mohamed Okda is a political consultant with extensive business experience, who is active on interfaith issues, crisis mediation and assessment, the economics of conflict and religious–secular dialogue. He is also the founder of Insight into Crisis, a conflict advisory.