Office for National Unity and Reconciliation Chairperson former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga said her office was working with the Education Ministry to include ‘reconciliation’ as a special subject in the school curriculum. (Photo: Sri Lanka Guardian)

Sri Lanka: ‘Reconciliation’ will be included in school curriculum

Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) Chairperson former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga (CBK) said her office was working with the Education Ministry to include ‘reconciliation’ as a special subject in the school curriculum.

Representatives of ADHR receiving the Max van der Stoel Award.

Cyprus-based NGO Association for Historical Dialogue and Research named winner of 2016 Max van der Stoel Award

The Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bert Koenders, presented the Association for Historical Dialogue and Research (AHDR), a Cyprus-based non-governmental organization, with the Max van der Stoel Award 2016 for its work on history teaching as a tool for reconciliation in Cyprus.

Students from San Vicente del Caguan. Fundacion Escuelas de Paz is conducting peace education training with more than 80 educators in the formerly FARC controlled area.

Reflections from a Peace Educator on the Possibility of Peace in Colombia

Amada Benavides de Perez is President of Fundación Escuelas de Paz, a peace education NGO in Colombia. She attended the September 26 signing of the peace agreement between the Colombian government and FARC. She and colleagues have been working tirelessly developing and training networks of formal and non-formal networks for decades, contributing to the foundational peacebuilding work making the possibility of the agreement possible. In the coming months, Fundacion Escuelas de Paz will be coordinating peace education efforts in territories formerly controlled by the FARC.

In this message, Amada offers her reflections on a turbulent week that began with hope, only to collide with confusion and exasperation. We stand in solidarity with Amada, the peace educators and the citizens of Colombia for their continued courage in pursuit of peace through education.

Peace Paradigm Radio: Truth and Reconciliation with David Ragland

Dr. David Ragland is co-founder of the Truth Telling Project, an initiative based in Ferguson, Missouri that aims to transform structural violence and racism through the adaptation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) model. While most models of the TRC happen after the violence has ended, the question posed by the creators of the Truth Telling Project was how they could initiate such a process when the violence has not yet stopped. Hence, an emphasis on making space for telling and hearing truth as a means for re-affirming human dignity. Learn more in this Peace Paradigm Radio podcast produced by the Metta Center for Nonviolence.

Centre for Peace Building and Reconciliation in Sri Lanka, to receive the Niwano Peace Prize

The Centre for Peace Building and Reconciliation was founded in 2002 by Dishani Jayaweera and Jayantha Seneviratne, who are also life partners and Sinhala Buddhists by birth. The CPBR is a non-profit organization promoting peacebuilding, peace-making and non-violent conflict transformation. It supports personal and societal transformation within and between ethnic, religious, linguistic and regional communities in Sri Lanka, working at all the grassroots, local and national levels. To achieve goals of national reconciliation, the CPBR focuses those considered to hold the greatest influence and promise for transformation: religious leaders, women, and young people.

Education and Culture Minister positive on teacher visits across the divide (Cyprus)

Education and Culture Minister Costas Kadis said that initiatives such as the visits of Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot teachers to schools in both communities of Cyprus are very positive. Kadis also said he met recently with the members of the Technical Committee for Education and they exchanged views on how to promote a culture of peace, respect for diversity and different opinions as well as mutual respect between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots.

Cypriot teachers work for peace and reconciliation through educational programmes

The need to have an educational system which promotes peace and reconciliation rather than perpetuating violence and war is the focus of a programme entitled “Education for a Culture of Peace”. In a joint interview with the CNA, Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot participants to the programme Loizos Loukaides and Süleyman Gelener point out that, at a time when efforts to reach a solution of the Cyprus problem are intensified, the need for change in the educational system in order to cultivate a culture of peace and anti-racism is imperative.

Now Accepting Applications for the Rotary Peace Fellowship

The Rotary Foundation is now accepting applications for the fully-funded Rotary Peace Fellowship. The fellowship provides academic and practical training to prepare scholars for leadership roles in solving today’s global challenges. Up to 100 fellows are selected globally every year to earn either a master’s degree or a professional development certificate in peace and conflict studies at one of six Rotary Peace Centers at leading universities in Australia, England, Japan, the United States, Sweden and Thailand.

United Movement to End Child Soldiering: reflections from our work

United Movement to End Child Soldiering, based in Washington, DC, is partnered with UMECS: The Center for Peace, Education and Development, a Republic of Uganda based NGO, to fulfill a mutually shared mission: to support secondary school and higher education for children and youth affected by conflict and poverty, together with school-based peace education and guidance and counseling programs, and help to build cultures of peace to prevent new wars. Following are excerpts from their 2015 year-end newsletter.

Philippines: Muslim, Christian students celebrate peace

Philippines: Muslim, Christian students celebrate peace

(Original article: Roy Ramos, Anadolu Agency, Nov. 27, 2015) ZAMBOANGA, the Philippines  Students at a predominantly-Muslim public secondary school in the Philippines’ south took turns to read passages from the Koran and Bible on Friday as they joined a week-long province-wide celebration called the Week of Peace in the predominantly Christian city of Zamboanga. Muslim students — who make up 90 percent of the Arena […]

Cypriots research how education can contribute to conflict transformation, peace and reconciliation

(Original article: Annette Chrysostomou, Cyprus Mail, Nov. 29, 2015) THE government will have to stick to its guns in the face of opposition it is likely to face if it wants to succeed with the deal reached earlier this week between the leaders of the two communities to change the face of education, experts have […]

Countering false stories about Thanksgiving with truth telling

The Global Campaign for Peace Education and the Upstander Project invite you to join us in countering false stories about Thanksgiving with truth telling about the history and current reality of Native peoples in the U.S.. Before you sit down to your big meal on Thursday considering sharing First Light with your family and friends. This 13-minute film can be […]

In the 19th and 20th Centuries, tens of thousands of Canadian aboriginal children were sent to church-run, government-funded boarding schools, called residential schools. Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories, date unknown. Library and Archives Canada/PA-042133

Reconciliation: Healing the Nation

(BBC World Service) With the recent election of a new, Liberal government, the issue of reconciliation between Canada’s indigenous peoples and the rest of the population is again high on the agenda. So what is the best way to atone for the wrongdoings of the past? The Honourable Justice Murray Sinclair, chair of the Truth […]

A child plays while participants talk at the Tent of Peace event in Wadi Ara. Photo by Bill Strubbe.

An oasis of hope amidst the turmoil (Israel/Palestine)

(Original article: Bill Strubbe, Jewish Journal, 10-22-15) Another convulsion of sectarian violence has swept Israel and Palestine these past weeks shattering lives and inculcating dread between Jewish and Arab communities. On smart phones, Jewish teens replay videos of stabbings and car attacks. Palestinian parents sequester their children indoors, frightened they might be arrested or killed. Returning […]

Separation Wall, Jerusalem.

Fear, Trauma and Healing: a Scientific Analysis of the Israeli-Palestinian Relationship

(Original article: Yoav Litvin, Counterpunch, 9-28-15) An approach designated as “evolutionary” can be employed in reference to two outlooks on global ethnic conflicts in general, and the Israeli/Palestinian one in particular. A Conservative and Neo-Liberal interpretation of Darwinism employs an approach whereby only the strongest peoples survive in a multi ethnic land. This so–called “survival of […]

Peace Education and Truth-Telling: A Transformative Philosophy of Disrupting of Status Quo, Political Efficacy, and Action

David Ragland The Truth Telling ProjectBoard Member, Peace and Justice Studies AssociationVisiting Assistant Professor at Bucknell Universitytwitter: @davidragland1(Featured article: Issue #120 April 2015) If we are to agree that the question of the ‘colorline’ continues to be a pressing issue in our country, then we need a national conversation that goes beyond talking. A conversation […]

Remembering Nelson Mandela on the first anniversary of his death: wisdom for peace

Vaughn John University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa(Featured article: Issue #116 December 2014) I write this piece as we approach the first anniversary of the death of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first democratic president. Madiba, as he was affectionately known, died on 5 December 2013, at the age of 95. He will be remembered for many […]