eBulletin August 2019
 
 

Supporting a world where all human beings have access to sufficient clean water, nutritious food and personal peace
 

Welcome to our latest eBulletin.

This month we feature stories and news updates about our current activities which we hope you enjoy and find illuminating. Included are the announcement of our UN International Peace Day event 'Practice Peace' on Saturday 21st September,  some developments following our 'Peace is Inevitable' screening event at the end of May, and an update on recent PEP activities we have been supporting.

We would like to dedicate this edition to the memory of our special friend and colleague David Windsor, who sadly passed away at the beginning of August.

Thank you for your continuing interest and participation, it is truly appreciated.


Warm regards
the Peace Partners team

In this eBulletin: 
 

Peace Partners 'Practice Peace' event announced for the International Day of Peace

   
     
 
Peace Partners in association with Youth Futures and The Tutu Foundation UK
are celebrating the
United Nations International Day of Peace
 

The purpose of this special event 'Practice Peace' is to help make peace a possibility at the national, community and individual level. It will include speakers who will share the work they are doing in partnership with communities and organisations around Croydon and South London, and aims to inspire new initiatives and forge new partnerships that will continue to make peace possible.

The day will be in two parts:
 
MORNING SESSION ​​9:30 am  – 12:40 pm
LUNCH ​​​ 12:40 pm  – 1:40 pm
AFTERNOON SESSION​ 1:40pm  –  4:15 pm

 
Register for tickets for the morning or afternoon sessions, or both
 
Entrance is free. Help towards event costs by donating here
 
VIEW PROGRAMME INFORMATION AND REGISTER: 
www.peacepartners.co.uk/practice-peace-event
Peace Partners' July report on PEP in the UK 

               


by Didge Hatcher and Chris Waite, UK community PEP Advisers                   

In early March 2019, Peace Partners charity received almost £10K of National Lottery funding to help work with community and youth organisations to enable them to organise and facilitate the TPRF Peace Education Programme (PEP), throughout the UK.  As a result, we are making the PEP workshops more widely available to the community irrespective of religion, age, gender, race, or any issues they may be experiencing such as poor mental health or homelessness. This is in collaboration with our partners and organisations who have a similar purpose; for them to share across their networks and social media; on the Peace Partners’ website and through e-bulletins and mailings.

Peace Partners has been working closely with communities affected by gang violence in South London and this is an area where we have recently concentrated our efforts to facilitate and run the Peace Education Programme. We have appealed to members of the wider community, youth leaders and organisations working with vulnerable people and community projects, to talk to us about becoming involved and for them to find out more about setting up this programme in their own organisations.  To this end, in April we ran an event in Croydon with three different workshops, of which an introduction to the PEP was one. Several representatives were invited to attend and some spoke about their own efforts in their communities, including the Tutu Foundation, Ubuntu Round Table Project and Shanika Benjamin’s Young People Insight. There was a lot of enthusiastic interest in the PEP presentation from these people and from many other representatives and attendees.

Called a Conflict Resolution Workshop, this event led on to a five-week Training PEP, held specifically for those organisations who had shown interest.  Several attendees from these organisations signed up and two completed the course after attending most of the ten workshops.  This training PEP was also attended by participants who were familiar with the material and wanted to be clear about how to facilitate a PEP.  We are very pleased to be able to expand our PEP teams to cope with the expected demand.

St Mungos is a UK charity that has three recovery colleges, offering a wide range of courses, they cater for adults who are vulnerable to homelessness and mental health issues. The PEP collection was trialled at one of their London bases in the Spring Term and was deemed to be the most popular course at the college. A second course is now running during the summer term and we hope to continue  these courses into the future.  Organisers at the college are encouraging us to take the PEP to their other London base, also into their hostels.  At the same time the base in Bristol is very interested in running the PEP in the Autumn term.  An experienced facilitator will set up an introduction to PEP for staff and some potential students.  This partly came about through a recommendation from a London based St Mungos worker.  We plan to offer the PEP to other homeless charities and have already had an enthusiastic response from a branch in Croydon. 

Other UK wide efforts have included reaching out to people in different areas who have put on their own PEP or would like to do so. Cornwall is notable in that a small team put in a lot of work promoting the PEP to communities in the Falmouth area by showing the film ‘Peace is Possible’ which 80 people attended, followed up with a successful Peace Education Programme with 9 regular attendees. They hope to repeat this success at Falmouth University (Combined Universities of Cornwall) later this year.

Peace Partners offers information about TPRF resources and financial support where needed. The Trustees have developed an application process for small requests for money and a more in-depth process for larger amounts, such as the grant awarded to Celebrate Life Events in May.  This money supported their efforts to introduce PEPs to a younger audience in London through music, art and dance. Peace Partners have contributed smaller amounts towards PEP materials costs to individuals running PEPs in prisons and in the community such as the St Mungo’s PEP.  

In May we screened ‘Peace is Inevitable’ at a small cinema in Croydon with approx. 40 attendees, some of the interested organisations from the Conflict Resolution  Workshop attended. A tutor from Goldsmiths Teacher Training College saw the film and is now considering the PEP as a course for teachers, she also commented that she would let her MP know that the PEP is vital to help with knife crime.  This is typical of the regular comments and enquiries we receive from many parts of the UK.

Quotes from a PEP participant from the homeless community at St Mungos:

“Life is sacred; when I realise that life is special, when I come from gratitude to be alive, I welcome every moment.  I see the world differently.  Life is beautiful.  I realise I have a gift which needs to be cherished, this realisation is empowering.  Life is worth living.”

“Today I woke up brimming with happiness; I looked forward to attending the 2nd week of the Peace Education Programme.  I shared my poem with the group and it was well received.”

 Read this article on our website here.
Prem Rawat Foundation article on Peace Partners' screening of Peace is Inevitable in Croydon
 


The Prem Rawat Foundation recently posted this article about Peace Partners 29th May event in Croydon.

The transformative potential of the 
Peace Education Programme was highlighted at a recent screening of “Peace is Inevitable” in Croydon, England. The documentary film shows how the programme inspired former members of the Bloods gang in Ibarra, Ecuador to renounce violence in favour of community improvement projects.

It was a timely message to share in Croydon, as the community seeks solutions to an ongoing gang crime epidemic. The screening at the David Lean Cinema was hosted by Peace Partners, a UK charity that is working in collaboration with The Prem Rawat Foundation to make the programme available to youth throughout London. Peace Partners recently received a grant from the UK National Lottery Community Fund to expand the programme, which consists of workshops that empower participants to make better choices in life.

The multimedia workshops feature video excerpts of Prem Rawat’s talks, exploring themes such as inner strength, self-awareness, dignity, choice, and hope.

The Croydon screening featured a panel discussion with the filmmakers, and also Kheron Kenardo, a local activist who works with at-risk youth. Christian, a former gang member who is featured in the documentary, joined the discussion live from Ecuador via a Skype video stream.

Read the rest of the article on the The Prem Rawat Foundation website here.


The event was filmed and two excerpts can now be viewed on our Youtube channel: 

After the event we received this message from Paul Murtha on behalf of the Ibarra Bloods: 

'Just to congratulate everyone at Peace Partners for the continuing peace outreach in benefit of marginalized youth. Myself as a rep for the Bloods of Ibarra, Ecuador, can say that your applying their documentary "Peace is Inevitable", now for the second occasion before interested people, certainly strengthens the belief for the Bloods that they are on the right path and it elevates their appreciation to be contributing to this overall peace initiative'.

DVD copies of 'Peace is Inevitable' are now available to borrow from Peace Partners for screening at local community and other events.

For more details please view this page on our website: 

Peace is Inevitable DVD loans

The Prem Rawat Foundation Appeal - Opening Possibilities 



      
 
We would  like to share this  letter of appreciation from The Prem Rawat Foundation about Peace Partners supporters' contributions to the Opening Possibilities Appeal: 
 
More news ...
 
Celebrate National Lottery's 25th birthday
                 

It was so exciting, and such a big step forward in recognition for Peace Partners, to receive the news in March of the award of a grant of £10,000 from the National Lottery Community Fund. This grant continues to enable Peace Partners to extend its support of community and youth projects and for the facilitation of Peace Education Programmes.

Coincidently this year is also the 25th anniversary of the National Lottery and a UK-wide series of celebratory and awareness raising events is planned, leading up to the actual Lottery birthday on 19th November.  Since 1994 more than £40 billion has been raised by the Lottery Fund and used to support an enormously diverse range of community activities throughout the UK.

It is a great opportunity to remind everyone of our grant and what it is being used for. Ways in which Peace Partners is becoming involved in the celebrations include:

  • Contacting local media, newspapers and radio and explaining what we have been able to do with the funding

  • Informing Peace Partners’ participants and beneficiaries and encouraging them to share their personal stories on social media #NationalLottery25 

  • Using 25th logo (above) on our website and in all our communications with other organisations and individuals                                                           

We wish to thank all the people who play the National Lottery, without which there would be no Lottery funds to donate to good causes. 

As grateful recipients of lottery funding we are very happy to join in with the National Lottery 25th birthday celebrations and to raise awareness of the National Lottery.

 Read this article on our website here.

High Tea Party Fundraiser 13th October - Reminder
 
Peace Partners' celebration cream tea Fundraiser for The Prem Rawat Foundation Food for People Programme

Sunday 13th October
1.00 to 6.00pm
Kewstoke Village Hall, 
Weston Super Mare
BS22 9UP
 
There will be musicians, magicians and much cake. 
Plus prizes, surprises and much more.


Planning meeting!

more details to follow

Peace Education in Cornwall


         
                                                   
Enjoying the PEP

A report by Alan Plummer

Finishing with celebratory cake and the presentation of attendance certificates the first Peace Education Programme in Cornwall concluded at the end of May. The programme was presented at the Fish Factory Arts Space in Penryn.

It has been a valuable learning experience for the team in Cornwall, and has given them the confidence to present the programme again in different settings. As one team member remarked "It's an inspiration to see how the material speaks for itself and needs no embellishment. People come, listen, and by and large go home happy. And come again the next week".

Overall 31 people attended at least a part of the 10 week programme, ten of whom were consistent attenders throughout. From a nil base, with promotion largely through the Eventbrite website, this was felt by the team to be a good outcome.

There were many positive comments made by attendees and one of them is planning to put on a Peace Education Programme for her employees as part of her company's health and wellbeing policy. Another commented "I got lots out of the programme, ultimately that happiness is a choice and that life is worth it. It's short, keeps things simple”.

The Peace Education team in Cornwall has already approached Falmouth University (CUC) to promote a showing of the documentary Inside Peace in the Autumn. This will be followed by a further Peace Education Programme on campus beginning in January.


Through promotion at the University it feels like an exciting new chapter is beginning with the potential to reach a wider and younger audience in the future.

                         

                                          Members of the team
Read this article on our website here.

Volunteering

We are looking for enthusiastic volunteers to help us move forward with our projects making a difference to the lives of many. We work hard to make sure volunteers learn new skills and receive the support they need. You are a vital part of the team. Current ongoing opportunities include:

Partnership Assistant
​This is the perfect opportunity for a volunteer who is enthusiastic and enjoys creating new connections and developing partnerships, expanding our current partnership base through creating invitations and communications.

​Community Fundraisers
​Work within local communities to raise the profile of The Peace Education Programme and the work of Peace Partners in this field, along with our fundraising effort for humanitarian relief and TPRF Food for People initiatives.

 
Find out more about our current vacancies here
In memory of David Windsor

It was with great sadness that last week we learned that David Windsor has passed away.

David was a Peace Partners volunteer from the end of 2016 helping in various roles including the preparation of the charity’s annual accounts and the organisation of the successful auction at the Denbies Gala Benefit in 2017. David was a passionate supporter of The Prem Rawat Foundation and its innovative Peace Education and Food For People programmes. He worked hard to maximise support for these programmes and was instrumental in putting together a Peace Partners presentation for showing at events around the country which highlights TPRF's global humanitarian efforts and gives an insight into how Peace Partners is supporting them. David enjoyed whatever he was undertaking, and he even managed to make the rather dry topic of Gift Aid fun and interesting!

He was a special friend and team member, we will miss him. We have shared our personal condolences, and our appreciation for all his contributions to the causes we are supporting, with his family.

 
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