Civitas is about reason and conscience. Our “mission” is to counter the ill-informed and apathetic citizen who answers the question about what is happening in the world with “I don’t know and I don’t care.” Our preference is to try to “do the work” rather than worry about fancy mission statements.
Article I of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “All human beings are…endowed with reason and conscience…” and Civitas is committed to the premise that democracy operates best when citizens act “with reason and conscience.” Our programs encourage both adolescents and adults to engage in compassionate critical thinking. We hope to reduce the rhetoric and raise the level of dialogue; thereby engaging more people in a constructive path towards fulfilling the promise of democracy. We believe that for the condition of humankind to improve, it is important for students and others to be active and responsible citizens.
Lest we sound too esoteric (serious and intellectual), let’s acknowledge that our own selfish interests play a key role in what we do. We enjoy working with students and civic-minded adults. We like testing our ideas about education and societal change in the laboratory of our “universe of students.” We enjoy assessing and reassessing the approaches that we take to our own learning and that of others. Not to be forgotten is how we like to laugh – particularly at hypocrisy, both our own and that which exists in the world around us. Not a bad combination …. thinking, reflecting, acting, and laughing! We hope that you’ll join us in the process.
Civitas was founded in 1991 with the twin goals of providing innovative programs for secondary students and also sponsoring professional development programs for teachers. By 1996, the focus changed almost exclusively to programs working directly with students in grades 6-12.
Most of the early work was sponsoring model United Nations programs. The areas in which Civitas now works are:
- Model United Nations programs
- Active, Responsible, and Sustained Citizenship programs
- Urban “Go-Team”
- Global Gateway Program in conjunction with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting
- Special conferences on global and local issues
- Bi-monthly open discussion groups for high school students
In 2015, Civitas launched a new Active Citizenship program designed to increase student awareness about issues of public concern. The program involves increased dialogue, field trips and special speakers.
The Civitas office is located at:
10845 Olive Blvd., Suite 155
St. Louis, Missouri 63141
Call us: (314) 367-6480
Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Civitas is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization and contributions are tax-deductible.