The International Day of Peace is observed around the world each year on September 21st as a day for commemorations and gatherings to honor the United Nation’s fundamental commitment of working towards peace. In Minnesota this commemoration is organized by the local United Nations Association chapter.
The theme for 2022 is End racism. Build peace. The commemoration includes music and prayers and guest speaker Amy Hansen from the US Office of Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP), an international peace organization based in Geneva, Switzerland. Amy will speak about Nonviolent Peaceforce’s work in the United States, advocacy at the U.N. and the most recent program started in Ukraine.
Locally, Nonviolent Peaceforce, works with young men impacted by gang violence. Several young men have been hired by NP as Community Peace Builders whose work focuses on de-escalation and conflict resolution, providing training in unarmed civilian protection, and keeping the community safe at events by providing unarmed security. NP has also partnered with the school district to support a Student Peace Advisory Group.
The students are taking the lead in developing new school safety initiatives that foster the safety and belonging of all.
The commemoration will conclude with refreshments and a Q & A with Amy Hansen and Markess Wilkins, who works with NP’s program for youth in North Minneapolis.