‘Peace is in everyone’s reach’

2017-10-03 06:06
Candles were lit at a World Peace Day event in Lavender Hill last week.

Candles were lit at a World Peace Day event in Lavender Hill last week.

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Lavender Hill residents and more than 15 NGOs participated in the second annual local Peace Day event last week.

Two events were organised by Learning in Reach on Monday 25 September to mark World Peace and Heritage days.

A Peace Day Forum talked about the needs of Lavender Hill and where individuals, families, religious organisations, NPOs and government can take action, support and help change. Speakers Pastor Craven Engel of Ceasefire and Lorenzo Davids of Community Chest brought their perspectives of and experiences in addressing some of the community’s most pressing needs.

“Our objective is to bring all NGOs and stakeholders in the Lavender Hill area together to identify opportunities for collaboration and improved support systems,” says project director Leanne Reid.

“We urged stakeholders to attend and engage so we can find constructive ways to build a more peaceful community for our children. We all have a role to play and it’s important we find synergies and ways of working together to improve the efficiency of resources used and to provide maximum impact,” adds Reid.

They also organised activities for children, including art, storytelling and acting, soccer, netball, dancing, surfing, yoga, knitting and music.

The combined efforts of organisations, including the Guardians of the National Treasure, People 4 Sports and Cultural Progression, MusicWorks, Earthchild Yoga, Pukka Theatre, A21, Waves for Change, the Young Knitters Club, Water Lily Arts and Crafts, the Walking Bus, Oasis, New World Foundation and Welton Warriors, provided a safe space for the children to play, threading the day together with educational messages on child safety and protection.

“Peace Day is about individuals coming together. It’s about reducing all forms of violence: In our homes, schools, places of work and local communities. Peace starts with individual action, and small actions inspire others, thereby creating larger impact. We need to move towards a culture of peace and tolerance in the family, schools, the workplace, the community and society,” says Reid.

Reid adds that she believes it is imperative to highlight this day of peace to inspire the next generation of peace builders and to demonstrate that small individual actions have great power to drive change.

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