Promoting Harmony

A JOINT INITIATIVE BY THE BRAIN TRUST AND THE UNION OF MUSLIM ORGANISATIONS OF UK AND EIRE

The above two organisations have come together to launch an initiative to address the. current concerns over the dangers to our education system, particularly our schools, of infiltration of extremist influences and radical tendencies with violent social aims.

The two bodies that are collaborating on this are both charitable organisations, which are strongly dependent on external resources, whether public or private.  Believing that the aims which we espouse are vital for the health and education of our society, we are passionate to embrace other bodies which share our purposes and which are in a position to commit resources to their achievement.

The founder of this partnership is Prof Dr Ahmed Ali Khan, Elected Chairperson of the Union of Muslim Organisations of UK and Eire. First Recipient of the World Peace and Prosperity Foundation annual award at the House of Lords 2011.

The Chairman is Ray Keene OBE Director of the Brain Trust, columnist for The Times and International Chess Grandmaster .Ray also co-founded and has organised the World Memory Championship since 1991.

We intend to produce a practical programme to assist schools to tackle the issues which undermine the promotion of tolerance, harmonious communities and peaceful cooperation.We intend to send trainers into schools to help the students to prepare mind maps of the troubling factors. So, for example, a mind map of ‘Me and my world’ would draw out the inter-connectivity and interdependence of community life. A mind map of ‘My beliefs and behaviour’ would help pupils understand how they should base their actions on the tenets they hold dear. We shall involve parents, community leaders etc in the sessions to help bring into play a shared picture of an amicable, peaceful marriage of Moslem culture and ‘British values’.

We have formed a Steering Group (see below) to drive the development of this programme.

An inaugural meeting of the Group was held at the Royal Society of Medicine on July 15, 2014. The Group felt that a key way of tackling such dangers – exemplified by the recent ‘Trojan Horse’ scares in Birmingham – is itself through education. The Group recognised that schools need help to provide a moral and spiritual climate which promotes understanding – by instilling knowledge and sensitivity, and which addresses the educational deficit that so often goes hand in hand with violent ideological aims.As Prince Mohsin Ali Khan has pointed out, it is also vital to enlist the support of parents, increase their contact with teachers and form a closer bond between the educators and the whole family structure of those being educated.

To help towards establishing the parameters of the issue and developing a programme that schools can implement effectively, and in recognition that the British Moslem Community has a pivotal role to play in relation to Jihadi movements such as ISIS and other recently-emerging militant bodies, an inaugural conference has been planned for September 22, 2014 Regents Park Mosque London. This conference will be chaired by Ray Keene OBE. Invitees will include; Media/ press/ TV Apex to be invited to film and broadcast the event LIVE .Dr Manahel Thabet UAE, Vice Chancellor of The Gifted Academy  and President of The Brain Trust for the Middle East and North Africa region ( MENA) has been invited as guest VIP  speaker. Further details of speakers will be circulated. The Conference is intended in particular to be a forum for prominent members of the London and wider UK Islamic Community.

Those of us involved in developing this programme are doing so voluntarily. We shall require financial support, however, to implement the programme (for payment to trainers, etc). If you would like to be involved in the development of this initiative, do please let us know. If you might be willing to become involved through financial or other support, we would be very happy to hear from you and, if a meeting would help, we would be pleased to talk to you in person about our needs and how you might help us.

Raymond Keene OBE
Director of The Brain Trust Registered Charity 1001012
Chess GrandMaster
www.keeneonchess.com
Twitter: @times_chess

Steering Group:

Prince Mohsin Ali Khan of Hyderabad: a leading member of UK Moslem community.
Professor Michael Crawford Director of the Institute for Brain Chemistry and Human Nutrition Imperial College London, who argues that proper techniques for brain nutrition form a key component of the programme of educating minds away from extremism
David Taylor, MA Oxon:  Formerly Director of Inspection, Ofsted, and currently international educational consultant. Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Educators in the City of London.
Julian Simpole: Former teacher with extensive experience at the ‘coal face’  from his work at a comprehensive school in Hove, Sussex ;Vice President of the Commonwealth Chess Association and Board Member of the Brain Trust.

As part of this initiative, we’re intending to send lecturers into schools to deliver sessions on ‘Beliefs and Behaviours’. Click here to read the outlines of the paper.