International Day of Peace 2011

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Commemorations of the United Nations International Day of Peace, September 21, 2011 in 62 nations organized by Universal Peace Federation chapters.

This year’s theme is “Peace and Democracy: Make Your Voice Heard,” indicating that the voices and practices of peace must not be silent or passive. We know that in too many places around the world, the voices of peace are restricted or silenced. Digital communications technologies, however, are making it increasingly difficult to suppress free expression.

At the same time, we know that technologies alone cannot bring about lasting peace. Peace has its foundation in the quality of human character and human relationships. And it has been our shared moral and spiritual traditions that, throughout millennia, have taught us of our common origins, purpose and destiny.

Therefore, as we celebrate the International Day of Peace, let us keep in mind that peace will emerge on the foundation of a moral and spiritual awakening. In this way, when we raise our voices to be heard, we will not have a cacophony of discord, but a symphony of harmony and good will that uplifts, encourages, respects and inspires us to act in service to others.

Lasting peace and the growth in solidarity among the whole human family comes from the recognition that we are all brothers and sisters. We are one family under God.

Let us also keep in mind that the basic building block of society, culture and moral character is the family. The family serves as the primary school of ethics. The family is the school where we learn to love, respect and serve others. By strengthening marriage and family, we can educate our children to respect all people, thereby establishing a culture of peace.

Religion has profound relevance and significance in the effort to achieve peace and development. At the same time, we recognize that all too often religious voices have sown seeds of fear, bigotry, and narrow sectarianism, contrary to the core spirit and teachings of the founders of the great spiritual traditions. For this reason, religion has often been a voice of conflict and division.

Laws alone cannot bring about political, economic and social reforms but must be undergirded by substantial educational programs aimed at promoting character education, conflict resolution, and a culture of peace. Men and women who are taught to fulfill their moral obligations and responsibilities toward others will respect and live for the greater good and fulfillment of others.

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  • Connaught Hospital was built in 1912 during the British colonial era before Sierra Leone gained independence on April 27, 1961. It is the oldest and most central hospital in Sierra Leone. It has 13 wards, 700 sick beds, offices, a kitchen, laundry, operating theatre, etc. It was in a deplorable and messy state of affairs both in terms of administration and care for patients. Patients complain of excessive filth in all parts of the hospital compound, and rats and cockroaches enter the patients' rooms. Patients complain of poor sanitation, but the hospital lacks an adequate labor force and has few resources. The sanitation/environmental unit has only two laborers, since most of its work force has been cut over the past five years. Since the administration can no longer manage these tasks, UPF met two weeks previously and decided to take up this task.
  • International Day of Peace 2011

    1. 1. INTERNATIONALDAY OF PEACE 2011
    2. 2. UN International Day of Peace One Day a Year … September 21st – millions of people around the world gathertogether under the banner of the United Nations International Day of Peace. This year’s theme, inspired by the Arab Spring, was “Make Your Voice Heard.”
    3. 3. UPF Programs in 70 nations …• Afghanistan • Ecuador • Latvia • Senegal• Albania • Estonia • Liberia • Seychelles• Argentina • Finland • Marshall Islands • Sierra Leone• Australia • France • Mauritius • Slovakia• Austria • Gabon • Mexico • Slovenia• Barbados • Georgia • Moldova • Solomon Islands• Belarus • Germany • Nepal • Spain• Benin • Ghana • Netherlands • Sri Lanka• Brazil • Guyana • New Zealand • Switzerland• Burkina Faso • Honduras • Nicaragua • Taiwan• Cambodia • India • Nigeria • Thailand• Cameroon • Indonesia • Norway • Togo• Canada • Ireland • Paraguay • United Kingdom• C.A.R. • Israel • Peru • United States• Colombia • Italy • Russia • Uruguay• Congo • Japan • Rwanda • Venezuela• Dominican Rep. • Kenya • Scotland
    4. 4. UPF AFGHANISTANKABUL: Traditional Afghan songs of peace comfort people’s hearts.
    5. 5. UPF ALBANIATIRANA AND SHKODRA: Donating school supplies for Roma orphans
    6. 6. UPF ARGENTINA —BUENOS AIRES: Participants in an interreligious “water of life” ceremony
    7. 7. UPF AUSTRALIAMELBOURNE: Sharing personal experiences in peacebuilding
    8. 8. UPF AUSTRIAVIENNA: Speakers at an interreligious service
    9. 9. UPF BARBADOSBRIDGETOWN: Planting trees at the A. Da Costa Edwards Primary School
    10. 10. UPF BELARUS VITEBSK: Conference speakers at the Regional Institute for theDevelopment of Education address the history of burned villages.
    11. 11. UPF BENINPORTO NOVO: A representative of the mayor of Porto Novo donates school supplies to an orphan.
    12. 12. UPF BRAZILSAO PAULO: Religious leaders join in ceremonies at a Peace Monument.
    13. 13. UPF BURKINA FASONANGREONGO: A festival of healing, unity and solidarity
    14. 14. UPF CAMBODIAYouth visit the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and pray for peace.
    15. 15. UPF CAMEROONYAOUNDE AND BUEA: Forums on Democracy and Peace
    16. 16. UPF CANADAMONTREAL: Discussing religious teachings about the oneness of the human family.
    17. 17. UPF CENTRAL AFRICAN REP.BANGUI: Holding peace conferences for adults and youth
    18. 18. UPF COLOMBIABOGOTA: An interreligious celebration of the Hebrew New Year
    19. 19. UPF CONGOBRAZZAVILLE: New Ambassadors for Peace at a celebration in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation
    20. 20. UPF DOMINICAN REP.BARAHONA: Organizers and honorees at a program at the Regional University Center in Barahona
    21. 21. UPF ECUADORQUITO: Speakers include a judge and a representative of UN Volunteers.
    22. 22. UPF FINLANDHELSINKI: A gathering to share personal visions of peace
    23. 23. UPF FRANCEPARIS: Panelists speak about positive aspects of multiculturalism.
    24. 24. UPF GEORGIATBILISI: Georgians, Armenians, Azerbaijanis, and Russians release doves.
    25. 25. UPF GERMANYSTUTTGART: Serving refreshments after an interreligious forum
    26. 26. UPF GHANAACCRA: Religious leaders open the program with prayers for peace.
    27. 27. UPF GUYANAGEORGETOWN: Prime Minister Samuel Hinds gives the keynote address.
    28. 28. UPF INDIANEW DELHI: Students from four universities compete in a two-day “Play Football Make Peace” tournament.
    29. 29. UPF INDONESIAJAKARTA: A conference at the State Islamic University
    30. 30. UPF IRELANDDUBLIN: A multi-cultural celebration at the Lantern Centre
    31. 31. UPF ISRAELJERUSALEM: Participants in a Jewish-Christian dialogue at the Church of the Dormition
    32. 32. UPF ITALYMONZA: An interreligious prayer vigil
    33. 33. UPF JAPANTOKYO: The Afghan Ambassador to Japan describes his hopes for peace.
    34. 34. UPF KENYANAIROBI: Planting “Peace Trees” to demonstrate a commitment to peace
    35. 35. UPF LATVIARIGA: Learning meditation techniques that promote inner peace.
    36. 36. UPF MARSHALL ISLANDSMARSHALL ISLANDS: Meditating for peace; former President Kessai Note
    37. 37. UPF MAURITIUSQUATRE-BORNES: Foster children put on a program for their foster parents, tutors, and benefactors.
    38. 38. UPF MEXICOMEXICO CITY: More than 300 school children, teachers and university professors gather on the campus of the Universidad Panamericana
    39. 39. UPF MOLDOVACHISINAU: Presentation at the College of Construction
    40. 40. UPF NEPALKATHMANDU: Interreligious prayers for peace
    41. 41. UPF NETHERLANDSTHE HAGUE: Representatives of five religions and four NGOs at the event
    42. 42. UPF NEW ZEALANDAUCKLAND: Transcending barriers through a Bridge of Peace Ceremony
    43. 43. UPF NICARAGUAMANAGUA: Entertainment includes a traditional dance.
    44. 44. UPF NIGERIAJOS: Apologizing for violence done in the name of religion
    45. 45. UPF NORWAYOSLO: A forum at the Central Mosque on ways to counter terrorism
    46. 46. UPF PARAGUAYASUNCION: A toast to peace at a conference on good governance
    47. 47. UPF PERULIMA: New Ambassadors for Peace from the Peruvian Congress together with the UN representative Sra. Rebeca Arias and co-sponsors
    48. 48. UPF RUSSIAMOSCOW: Laying a wreath at a Monument to the Victory over Fascism
    49. 49. UPF RWANDAKIGALI: Planting a Peace Pole in a school yard sparks new hope for peace.
    50. 50. UPF SCOTLANDPERTH: New Ambassadors for Peace; a traditional Scottish welcome
    51. 51. UPF SEYCHELLESVICTORIA: A program at the National Theater
    52. 52. UPF SIERRA LEONEFREETOWN: Volunteers cleaning up around the Connaught Hospital.
    53. 53. UPF SLOVAKIANITRA: Exhibiting children’s drawings about peace at a shopping center
    54. 54. UPF SLOVENIALJUBLJANA-ŠKOFLJICA: A candlelight ceremony for peace
    55. 55. UPF SOLOMON ISLANDSHONIARA: Vura Community High School welcomes peace educators.
    56. 56. UPF SPAINBARCELONA: A forum on “Libya: Present and Future” stirs much interest.
    57. 57. UPF SWITZERLANDGENEVA: A symposium on multiculturalism at the UN offices included a session of the Model UN Interreligious Council.
    58. 58. UPF TAIWANTAIPEI: Diplomats and political scientists discuss the proposal for an interreligious council at the UN.
    59. 59. UPF THAILANDBANGKOK: An interfaith water ceremony at the launch of the National Interreligious Peace Council.
    60. 60. UPF TOGOLOME: A conference on leadership and good governance
    61. 61. UPF UNITED KINGDOMLONDON: Forums on peace initiatives in various parts of the world
    62. 62. UPF URUGUAYMONTEVIDEO: Participants in an Interreligious Peace Summit
    63. 63. UPF VENEZUELACARACAS: People of all ages join in a Walk for Peace.
    64. 64. UPF & The Washington Times FoundationWashington DC, USA: Ambassadors to the United States,NGO leaders, and others study the UPF Peace Principles.
    65. 65. For details seehttp://www.upf.org/united-nations/peace-day

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