For more than a century, a key aspect of the Ismaili community’s identity has been informed by a deep commitment to a culture of care. This concept isn't just encouraged; it's celebrated throughout our global Jamat. Nowhere is this notion of care more evident than in our tradition of serving others.

The power of care knows no bounds. It manifests itself through action and intention, via concern for the natural environment, our neighbours and friends, and wider society. 

Global Encounters (GE) is excited to join hands with Ismaili CIVIC in the lead-up to next summer’s GE Festival in Dubai. This partnership will see artists, athletes, and volunteers uniting across the globe to make a meaningful difference in their neighbourhoods and local communities this weekend. 

Through the mediums of arts and sports, we can find avenues for engagement that transcend ourselves and our daily responsibilities. For example, when a filmmaker crafts a narrative through their work, they evoke emotions, challenge perspectives, and raise awareness about critical issues. Their creation becomes an act of care, reaching out to touch hearts and minds. When we come together to appreciate a filmmaker’s work, we also demonstrate care through our presence and engagement with their artistic expression, creating a beautiful cycle of reciprocal care.

In fact, care takes centre stage in Jubilee Arts as a whole. Participating artists are encouraged to channel their care into their creations. Art becomes a unique avenue for our community's talented individuals to share their passions, concerns, and creativity. Through thoughtful reflection via arts and culture, we reignite our commitment to care and inspire others to do the same.

Similarly, the Jubilee Games initiative, by hosting numerous team sports, inherently embodies vital elements of care. From players coming to the aid of a fallen teammate to experienced athletes mentoring aspiring youngsters, and the mutual respect shared by opponents — these moments exemplify care for one another and for our community more broadly.

Service, or khidma, is an integral part of our Ismaili identity. As Princess Zahra once described it, “voluntary service to others is viewed as an integral and positive part of daily life, and never as a burdensome obligation or an elective activity. Service is a means for each individual to actualise Islam's ethics of inclusiveness, of compassion, of sharing, of the respect for life, and of personal responsibility for sustaining a healthy physical, social, and cultural environment.” 

Through voluntary service, we have the opportunity to embody these principles and make a positive difference in our communities. The impact can extend far beyond those we serve, profoundly transforming ourselves and inspiring others to join this journey of community building through care.

The Global Encounters Festival is a remarkable opportunity for the worldwide Jamat to engage in khidma and make a meaningful impact. It will foster connections through programmes and events centred on our shared sense of purpose, including Ismaili CIVIC activities, Heritage Journeys, international talent retreats, speaker series featuring industry experts in arts and sports, recreational activities, and immersive cultural and learning experiences.

What makes next year’s festival truly special is plans to create connections both digitally and in-person. Through technology, programming will be accessible remotely, allowing Jamati members from diverse corners of the globe to participate and experience a profound sense of community. Whether you’re an artist, athlete, patron, spectator, or volunteer, begin your journey today by participating in regional or national events.

In preparation for 2024, let's come together as a global Jamat, united by our culture of care, to celebrate excellence, inspire change, and make the world a better place. 

To learn more, visit the Global Encounters website.