Resources available to celebrate International Day of Peace

published 21 September 2010 updated 21 September 2010

The non-profit organisation ‘Peace One Day’ has launched a free global education resource pack with lesson plans to help young people learn about non-violence, conflict resolution and inter-cultural cooperation in schools.

The UN’s International Day of Peace falls on 21 September every year. The day is not only about creating peace between nations, but is also about articulating the values of non-violence in peoples’ homes, communities and schools. Therefore, Peace Day is relevant to every teacher and educator around the world.

The Peace One Day organisation seeks to engage all sectors of society, including UN institutions, governments, non-governmental organisations and individuals. The resource, which uses Peace Day as its focus, is available in the six official languages of the United Nations: Arabic; Chinese (Mandarin); English; French; Russian and Spanish, and is designed to enable students to develop a sense of perspective in relation to the multicultural and inter-dependent world in which we live. Reflective individual and group activities, critical thinking and technology are core components of the activities features within the resource pack.

The organisation estimates that more than 5,000 educators are currently using Peace One Day education resources globally. The target for 2010 is to increase this figure to 20,000 educators. It is hoped that by engaging in these experiences students will have the opportunity to be aware of Peace Day and what it stands for, as well the sense that they, as global citizens, have an active role to play in securing peace one day.

EI welcomes this initiative and reiterates the value of peace education, as stated in two of its resolutions.

At the 2004 EI World Congress in Brazil, delegates adopted a Resolution on Education for Peace which called for ‘an international policy based on justice and the respect of human rights, a policy capable of confronting extreme poverty and environmental destruction.’ They also pledged ‘to promote education for peace and intercultural learning as the best antidote to racist and fundamentalist phenomena in order to prevent social conflict and the recourse to social violence. The principles contained in the declarations of UNESCO, the UN and other international organisations must represent the foundation of education for peace and understanding amongst peoples.’

The Resolution on Peace and an end to violence was also approved at the last Congress in Germany, and called for ‘training programmes for peaceful coexistence and the exercise of democracy and citizenship,’ as well as urging EI affiliates ‘to redouble their efforts, along with the organisations of civil society, in favour of the peaceful resolution of conflicts.’

You can get involved by taking three simple steps: 1. Decide what you will do to make peace on September 21, at your school, in your home, or in your local community; 2. Log your Peace Day commitment at www.peaceoneday.org; 3. Tell others around you, and ask them to complete the three steps to Peace One Day too.

To access the resource, please click here: http://www.peaceoneday.org/en/education

EI resolutions on Peace Education are available here: http://www.ei-ie.org/library/en