Rotary District 1020 – Peace and Conflict Resolution Project with PeaceJam

Project Description

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There are a great number of forces today— including the media, music and corporations—that try to mould the opinions and behaviours of our young people. It is therefore critical that youngsters gain experience in thinking through issues themselves, weighing the evidence, coming to their own thoughtful conclusions. We believe that this is especially important because the world will need new ideas and perspectives on how to build peace in the 21st century. The Nobel Peace Prize winners have a great deal to teach about peace making, but they too are humans with their own opinions and ways of seeing the world. The youngsters of today need to know that and be encouraged to thoughtfully challenge whatever they are reading and hearing. (Adapted from the PeaceJam Leaders Curriculum).

This project was therefore created to include more Rotarian and Family of Rotary involvement in Peace studies at an earlier stage than the current Peace Scholars studying post graduate work at the Rotary International Peace Centres. The project has targeted young people in secondary schools using the joint skills of Rotarians, Peace Centre Scholars and Peace Fellows and the resources created by the Peace Laureates through a Peace Ambassadors Curriculum created by PeaceJam. They become Peace Ambassadors for their school and community.

Objectives of the Project
• To raise awareness of international peace initiatives which will encourage the use of conflict resolution philosophy in young people at a local level.
• To enable senior youngsters in schools throughout the country to become “Peace Ambassadors” so that they engage in and support other youngsters to develop life skills to make informed choices in their daily life.
• To enable Rotarians or members of the family of Rotary to facilitate the formation of “Peace and Conflict Resolution Groups” in secondary schools and community groups.
• To link with the Peace Fellows of Rotary Peace Centres such as at Bradford University as mentors and when possible utilise Ambassadorial and Global Scholars in the facilitation meetings.
• To employ the curriculum resources of the PeaceJam Ambassadors Curriculum and train Rotarians to have confidence using these materials.

Success Criteria—young people choose and use practical approaches or problem solving skills to ensure that in times of crisis positive decision making is applied and encouraged in others.

Read an article on the programme here.