India

UU Music Leader Tour

 

UU Music Leaders are invited to participate in a two-week experience sharing music and learning with UUA justice partners and Unitarian congregations in India. The UU College of Social Justice and the UUA are hosting this tour, which plans to visit a social justice organization near Mumbai, and the school it runs for Adivasi girls; a justice organization in central India that employs the music of Kabir in its work; and Unitarian churches in the Khasi Hills of Northeast India.

Priority will be given to current and former Music Leaders in UU congregations. Dates: January 23rd-February 6th, 2020.

Why Travel to India?

India’s social justice movements have profoundly rich music traditions stretching back centuries. This trip is designed for UU musicians to share music from their own traditions and learn music from students, activists, and congregations in India. Participants will perform prepared music, hear songs important to social movements, engage in worship, and make connections with Unitarian communities. Meeting with partners in three regions, participants will learn about current justice struggles and Unitarian history in India.

Who are our partner organizations?

We will be hosted during our journey by two justice partners working to advance the rights of marginalized groups in India and by the Unitarian Union of Northeast India.

How much does this program cost?

The cost is $2,100 per person for those sharing a room and $2,350 per person for travelers who would prefer a single room, wherever possible. This price includes all housing, food, translation, partner honoraria, and in-country travel. It does NOT include round-trip international airfare to India or costs associated with visas, vaccinations, and travel insurance.

Where will we stay?

During most of the journey we will stay in comfortable, two to three-star hotels where participants can expect many modern amenities. Three nights of the trip will be spent at the campus of our partner organization in rural Maharashtra. Participants will stay in simple but clean rooms with four to six beds each, a shared bathroom, and ceiling fans. Purified drinking water will always be available throughout the trip.

Are there concerns about safety?

We work closely with our partners in India to ensure the safety of all our participants, whether regarding food safety and accommodation or the areas we visit. The trip is not visiting any part of India facing persistent violence or unrest. The group will be accompanied throughout the journey with leaders who will be available to address any concerns around food or medical needs. However, travel anywhere does involve some level of risk, especially when traveling extensively by road, and we encourage prospective participants to express any concerns or questions they may have.

What are the expectations for preparation and follow-up for this trip?

During the fall of 2019, you’ll be asked to participate online with the group in engaging study materials that will help you understand the people and places we will visit, as well as the wider context in which our partners work in India. At the same time, the group will develop a program of music to be shared, including music in local languages (Marathi and Hindi). On your return home, we hope you will find many ways to share your experience and all that you’ve learned with your community! We will support you with ideas and resources for action.

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