Category Archives: South Asia

Asia and Pacific: International Day of Peace

. . FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION . .

A survey by CPNN

e have found 158 events in 22 Asian and Pacific countries. Details are available for 33 that were listed in Google during the week of September 21-28 under the key words “International day of peace” and 国际和平日 (Chinese) as well as on the website of the event map for the International Day of Peace, the facebook page of the Global Feast, the website of Unify.org and the facebook page of International Cities of Peace. In addition to the 33 events on the above websites, there were 125 events mentioned without detail on the websites of One Day One Choir and Montessori schools singing for peace No doubt there were many events listed on the Internet in languages other than those for which we searched.


Photo from the program in Uttar Pradesh organized
on the occasion of International Peace Day

Here are details of the events

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN: Afghan Women’s Network, celebrates World Peace Day at kabul Star Hotel. With the participation of Social activist’s, Community Leader’s, Religious Scholar’s, Representatives of different NGO’s members, Teacher’s,Youth and children’s. Afghanistan’s Civic Party plans to celebrate this day on the World Peace Day, which is one of the most urgent needs of dear Afghans in Afghanistan with a martial arts competition with the participation of the National Martial Arts Federation and with the participation of Pakistani and Iranian opponents under the name “Fighting to launch peace.”

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN: Carpet of peace woven by Afghanistan youth. It is 35 meters in length in the colors of blue and white. Afghanistan’s Civic League will hold classes about peace with those who cross the carpet.

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA: On the 21 of September, UNIC Canberra marked the International Day of Peace with the Queensland Branch of the United Nations Association of Australia at their annual Brisbane Peace Lecture. UNIC Canberra Director, Mr Christopher Woodthorpe spoke about the historic context and significance of the International Day. Professor of Law and Director of Research at the Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning at the University of Technology, Dr Larissa Behrendt then delivered the Peace Lecture at St John’s Cathedral to an audience of 150 people. The event also featured performance by the Combined Union Choir with Songlines Katini.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA: Sister Margaret Parker represented the Brahma Kumaris at an Interfaith Prayer Service at the Uniting Church in Parramatta on Friday, September 21st, to mark the United Nations International Day of Peace. The Uniting Church pastor, Rev. Dr. Manas Ghosh, has been conducting this Interfaith service for the past fifteen years. The service started with the lighting of the Peace Candle by Dr. Zeny Edwards from the UN Association of Australia while the congregation recited the International prayer for peace. This year, the Armenian Apostolic Church, the Coptic Orthodox, and the Sufis joined for the first time. Another Interfaith Prayer Service on September 21st was attended by BK Helen Chapman at the Lindfield Uniting Church, in northern Sydney. About 120 people were present when the service started at 11 am. Twelve representatives from different faiths were present to participate in the leading of a prayer or a reading from their particular faith. There was also an exhibition outside the Prymont Theatre Foyer about loving kindness, compassion, inner peace and sustainable development goals (SDGs) where BKs also had a table to hand out pamphlets.

WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA: School students and Illawarra People For Peace (IP4P) members took to song and friendship to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the UN International Day of Peace. ‘The Right to Peace – The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70’, was the theme of Friday’s event in Wollongong. IP4P president Reverend Geoff Flynn said it was 70 years since the charter for human rights was signed but there’s actually not a right to peace in that particular charter. Students from Amity College, Wollongong Public School, Edmund Rice College and St Mary’s College performed during the September 21 event at Wollongong Mall. Reverend Miao You from the Nan Tien Temple also made a speech about peace and human rights. Amity College president Dr Mehmet Aslan also spoke about social justice and equality.

MALENY, AUSTRALIA: World Cafe Community Dialogue Forum: a series of intimate hosted table conversations focused around practical peacebuilding.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA: 100 people are expected to attend Earthdance Perth for an event benefitting the Kigalisun Foundation of Rwanda.

DHAKA, BANGLADESH: In order to celebrate the International Day of peace, the Department of Information Studies and Library management in association with East West University Library invites students to come together to form a human chain of peace sign on 23rd September 2018 at 12:00 pm in EWU ground. These allies are also conducting an hour-long session at Digital Section of the Library, from 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm on the same day to engage the students to understand the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and to get their opinions on “Right to Peace”.

SIRAJGANJ DISTRICT, BANGLADESH: The day will start with a interfaith community gathering and with a Peace March. 

KUTAPOLONG REFUGEE CAMP, BANGLADESH: A film by Nihab Rahman portraying Rohingya Refugee Children immersed in the message of peace and hope: http:///www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJztYzNogCM&feature=youtu.be

ISPP, PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA: The whole school from kindergarten to grade 12 together will write the lyrics of a song expressing our vision about peace. The school will be divided in 6 groups and each group will have 40 minutes to write about peace and humanity.

HONG-KONG, CHINA: Go to the Hong Kong Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception for a prayer about world peace. Peace ambassadors: Students will promote the message of peace to the kindergartens through storytelling and arts and crafts. Arts and crafts activities for peace. All students of our school will join various programs to acknowledge the importance of this day.

NANJING, CHINA: Sept. 20 (Xinhua) – Nanjing, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) – China on Wednesday called on all countries, large or small, strong or weak, rich or poor, to behave as advocates, promoters, sympathizers and practitioners of peace. The Chinese Vice President, Wang Qishan, made the call during the opening ceremony of an International Peace Day event in Nanjing, capital of Jiangsu province, east China. “The International Day of Peace represents good hope for world peace for all the people in the world,” Wang said. “The Chinese people, always a lover of peace, expect to pursue, maintain and enjoy peace with the peoples of other countries.” Wang also met with foreign guests who attended the event, including Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia, Ulziisaikhan Enkhtuvshin; the former president of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias Sánchez; the former French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin; the former Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama; former Nepalese Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, also known as “Prachanda”; and the president of the National Regeneration Movement of Mexico, Yeidckol Polevnsky Gurwitz.

HYDERABAD, INDIA: Rendering of peace words and poem by youtube.

BHUBANESWAR, ODISHA, INDIA: Volunteers of National Oral Cancer Prevention Initiative, (NOCPI) in association with Kalinga Institute of Dental Sciences (KIDS) will meet and interact with public gathering and will sensitized them about the importance of their oral & systemic health and also their responsibilities in creation of peace in world.

SOHNA, GURUGRAM/GURGAON, INDIA: The Apeejay Stya University is organizing Poster Making and Discussion on World Peace Day under National Service Scheme.

CHANDIGARH, INDIA: Celebration of the Global Feast

SAHIBZADA AJIT SINGH NAGAR, PUNJAB, INDIA: Celebration of the Global Feast

(Survey continued in right column)

Question for this article

What has happened this year (2018) for the International Day of Peace?

(Survey continued from left column)

UTTAR PRADESH, INDIA: The program was organized on the occasion of International Peace Day under the chairmanship of District Basic Education Officer Rakesh Kumar. During this, the students were given information about the peace day. Nikhat Parveen District Scout Master District Training Commissioner and Dipinder Kaur District Guide Captain, Scout Guide at District Scout Guide Roti Warehouse campus and International Peace Day was celebrated with Divyang’s children. On this occasion, the Chief Guest was given the message of peace by making a sign of the Messenger of Peace by the District Basic Education Officer. On this occasion, the symbols of peace were allowed to fly into the open sky and the message of unity was given.

CHEMPAKAPARA, INDIA: This is how we celebrated the International Day of Peace. The Non-Violence Project Foundation, NOCER India, Goonj and Dharma Bharathi Mission jointly organised three community activities at Belmount School, Chempakapara (Idukki District – a district devastated by the recent landslide/flash-floods). The village community cleaned a pond, made a kitchen vegetable garden and a children’s park. More than 150 volunteers participated in the community activities and were rewarded with family kits consisting of food grains and general consumables.

RAIPUR, INDIA: Students of #RungtaInternationalSchool were on a full day visit to the four major religious places of #SmartCityRaipur . The Ram Mandir , The Church , The Masjid and the Gurudwara , The religious leaders of all these places spoke about the respective religious . Since most of the discord in the world is divided on religious lines , it’s imperative that we create a #religionofyouth which enables the next generation to understand and assimilate the essence and spirit of peace of all religions and respect them.

CHIBA, JAPAN: Troop 43, girl scouts of Japan hold an annual event for local girls and their supporters to realize peace and encourage to spread it out through the world.

YANGON, MYANMAR: Seminar

KATHMANDU, NEPAL: A mass Message Writing and Signature Campaign is being held on 21st September to as way of sending messages to Stop Sexual Abuse of children and adolescent girls ! 11 spots within Kathmandu, Nepal will have a long spread of cloth to gather messages and signature to come together and create collective against rape and sexual abuse !

KATHMANDU, NEPAL:> In coordination with the establishment this year of Namo Buddha: City of Peace, we from Kathmandu, Nepal today 21st Sept. are celebrating World Peace Day by walking by foot with a “talking” burning candle from Kathmandu to Namo Buddha nearly 65 km. With me are 11 other persons also participating with candles passing and lighting by devotees of Buddhists in different Bihars and Monasteries for three days)

WANGANUI, NEW ZEALAND: Video of the annual gathering for the International Day of Peace,at Handspan sculpture at Queens Park.

CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND: Members of the World Peace Bell New Zealand chapter and other community groups will gather at the Peace Bell and ring it in support of world peace.

PORIRUA, NEW ZEALAND: Porirua Hospital Chapel’s Annual Peace Day Celebration

KUMARA, NEW ZEALAND: Kumara Village of Peace community had a shared feast for peace’ at the community center with ‘Kites for Peace’ in the afternoon.

BAGH AZAD KASHMIR, PAKISTAN:
Peace walk

HAYATABAD, PESHAWAR, PAKISTAN: Nowadays the message of peace becomes more valuable at a time when the country is facing uncertain political situation and terrorist activities.This event will aimed to educating students about the need for a peaceful society and to pay tribute to those who have lost their lives in conflicts and also give the message of peace and hope.

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN:> Members of Worlds Children Peace Monument, Pakistan World Peace Daily and International Center For Environmental Arts are celebrating international peace day in Margalla National Park, Islamabad.

MANILA, PHILIPPINES: Open mic so participants can express themselves about the International Day of Peace in the Philippine context.

MANILA, PHILIPPINES: The Peace-IPPNW Commission of the UP Medical Students for Social Responsibility presents Himig: an open mic (spoken word and acoustic) event, with the theme of “Peace and Human Rights”. Through this open mic, participants are given the opportunity to exercise their right to freedom of opinion and expression. Through poetry, prose and music, we aim to foster a sense of unity, and to strengthen and instill in our participants a yearning for peace in all its levels. 

JEJU-DO, SOUTH KOREA: 2018 International Day of Peace Celebration in Jeju ‘Fly for Peace’ : The Right to Peace-The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70
Program:
– Human rights and Peace Booths, flea market to raise donation for refugees
– Celebration Opening, performance, speeches and presentation
– Jeju Peace exhibition and Ethiopia exhibition tour with docent, Human Rights film

SRI LANKA: TWR Lanka will be organizing a special FM radio discussion on the topic ‘Peace’ to be broadcasted via FM 94.3/ 94.5

SURAT THANI, THAILAND: Pyramid rise ecstatic dance

DILI, TIMOR-LESTE:> To celebrate peace day, we will march along the Beach Road (starting point: near Centro Supermarket; ending point: Unidade Policia Maritima). The march will be led by a percussion group. Then, we will continue with a concert in Unidade Policia Maritima, starting from 7pm. The concert will be filled with many young talented Timorese who will be singing various songs related to peace, and dancers dancing to different types of music. On this peace day, we are celebrating diversity! 

In addition to the above events, One Day One Choir lists participating choirs for the International Day of Peace in :
Australia (QUEENSLAND, TOWNSVILLE, MIDDLE SWAN,KATANNING, KADINA, ADELAIDE, MELBOURNE, CANBERRA, CONISTON, RUSE, SYDNEY, NELSON BAY, FORSTER, BELLINGEN, BALLINA, ARUNDEL, TOOWOOMBA, BRISBANE, MORETON, SUNSHINE COAST, BUNDABERG)
Bangladesh (KHULNA)
Brunei (PANAGA)
China (BEIJING, QINGDAO, PUDONG, GUANGZHOU, HONG KONG)
India (KOLKATA, CHENNAI, BANGALORE, MUMBAI, NEW DELHI, BIKANER)
Indonesia (JAKARTA)
Iran (KERMANSHAH, TEHRAN, LAHIJAN)
Japan (CANORA)
Malaysia (PETALING JAYA)
New Zealand (AUCKLAND, TAURANGA, UPPER HUTT, WELLINGTON, QUEENSTOWN)
Pakistan (RAHIM YAR KHAN, JATUI JANUBI, D G KHAN, MUZAFFARGARH, KHANEWAL, HASSAM WALA, LAYYAH, SAHIWAL, KASUR, NANKANA SAHIB, FAISALABAD, SARGODHA,HAFIZABAD, GUJRANWALA, NAROWAL, GUJRAT, DHAKKAR, ISLAMABAD, KOHAT, LAHORE, KARACHI)
Philippines (BENGUET, SIQUIJOR)
Singapore
South Korea (YEONGGI PROVINCE)
Sri Lanka (COLOMBO)
Thailand (BANGKOK, PHUKET)
Timor-Leste (DILI)
Vietnam (HANOI, HO CHI MINH CITY)

And the map of Montessori schools singing for peace on the International Day of Peace includes schools in:
Australia (QUEENSLAND, NEWCASTLE, BALMAIN, BEECHWORTH, NEW GISBORNE, SOUTH VIC, MCLAREN VALE, WEST SWAN)
Brunei (DARUSSALAM)
China (BEIJING, SHANGHAI, HANGZHOU ZHEIJANG, FUJIAN)
India (KOLKATA, LUCKNOW, DELHI, HYDERABAD, BANGALORE, COIMBATORE)
Indonesia (KUTA UTARA BALI, JAKARTA)
Japan (TOKYO, OSAKA)
Malaysia (SELANGOR)
Micronesia (PENIA WENO)
New Zealand (AUCKLAND, WAIKATO, TAURANGA, BAY OF PLENTY, GISBORNE, HAWKES BAY, TARANAKI, MANAWATU, LOWER HUTT, WELLINGTON, NELSON, TIMARU, WANAKA, ARROWTOWN, DUNEDIN)
Philippines (NUEVA ECIJA, DANAO CITY, MANILA)
Sri Lanka (DEHIWALA)
Thailand (MUKDAHAN, KHON KAEN, PHUKET)
Vietnam (HANOI, DANANG)

Ex-Soviet Countries: International Day of Peace

. . FREE FLOW OF INFORMATION . .

A survey by CPNN

The following 71 events in 9 countries formerly part of the Soviet Union were listed in Google during the week of September 21-28 under the key words “Международный день мира” and “Міжнародний день миру”as well as “International day of peace”.


Participants of the action in Sverdlovsk launched balloons into the sky with white doves, on which were written the names of the deceased warriors of the Great Patriotic War.

We begin with articles from RUSSIA (in alphabetical order), followed by ARMENIA, AZERBAIJAN, BELORUS, GEORGIA, KAZAKHSTAN , KYRGYZSTAN, MOLDOVA and UKRAINE.

BASHKORTOSTAN, RUSSIA: Students of our college, Baskirsky College, together with the Youth Public Chamber at the State Assembly-Kurultai of the Republic of Bashkortostan, laid wreaths to the monument of the grieving mother in Victory Park, paying tribute to all those who lost their lives in local wars. This event is designed to unite the youth of Bashkortostan in patriotism, respect for the fallen and for a peaceful sky over our head.

BIRYULYA, ALTAI REPUBLIC, RUSSIA: The action “We are for Peace!” Was prepared by the pupils of the pre-school groups of the school No. 933 on Thursday, September 20. In anticipation of this event, the children talked with the psychologist Svetlana Bolotskikh about peace, and then the older children created a bright “Bird of Peace” with the help of appliqué. “Peace time is a blessing that enables us to live steadily: to study, work, create families, raise children,” said Svetlana Bolotskikh. -Svetlana also noted that on the day of the holiday no one was indifferent: even the smallest pupils of the pre-school department all together made a large drawing of the Earth, and then they stamped it with their handprints.

BOLSHAYA BALASHIXA, MOSCOW OBLAST, RUSSIA: On the eve of the International Day of Peace the Library Center “Yuzhny” offered its readers poetic information, which included collections of poems about good and peace, about friendship and love for the Motherland. Adults and children took part in the poetic marathon and in the choice of the poems, most vividly defining the theme of peace and mutual understanding. Samuel Marshak’s poem, which urges children to play not in war, but in peace, gained the greatest number of votes. The information hour in the library was joined by 18 people.

BOLSHAYA EKATERINOVKA, AKARSKY REGION, RUSSIA: In Bolshaya Ekaterinovka schoolchildren released into the sky the doves of peace. A single class hour was devoted to the International Day of Peace in a rural school on September 21. Students and teachers of the MOU-SOSH village of Bolshaya Ekaterinovka joined the action “Dove of Peace”. At the beginning of the event, there was a single class hour in the 1-11 grades of the school, which was led by the eighth-grader Veronika FEDINA, sixth grader Darya KAZARYAN and sixth grader Victoria PISARENKO. They told about the purpose of this action, read poetry about peace and white doves – the symbol of peace. In memory of those who died during wars, candles were lit and a minute of silence was declared. The pupils of primary classes made drawings “We are for peace on the whole planet.” The action ended with the release into the sky of colorful balloons with paper doves attached.

BUGULMA, TATARSTAN, RUSSIA: The mobile cultural center of the Centralized District Club System of Bugulma held a thematic event “The World Begins from Childhood” for the first-graders of School No. 3. Employees of the cultural center told the children about memorable dates, the history of their origin and their significance. Girls and boys played games for the knowledge of kind words and countries of the world. They painted our planet to give their drawings to family and close people. And at the end of the event all participants received flyers in honor of the significant dates and wished each other a peaceful sky over their heads, joy and happiness.

CHELYBINSK RUSSIA: In our lyceum (Licium 102 Chelybinsk) , we celebrated the International Day of Peace for the second year . Today we talked and sang about peace ! Hand over hand , under the sounds of bells of peace, reminding us that we have not been touched by war … And at the end of the holiday lyceum students of 8-11 classes have built a simple , but important word “PEACE” . Lyceum 5-7 classes lined up in the form of the Russian flag. The director of the lyceum Marina Leonidovna Oksenchuk, the deputy director for the Verkhovna Rada Larisa Stepanovna Lebedeva, Alexander Valerievich Kurochkin and the hosts of the holiday launched the white doves into the peaceful sky .

HASAVYURTOVSKY DISTRICT, DAGESTAN, RUSSIA: The libraries and preschool institutions of the Hasavyurtovsky district celebrated the International Day of Peace. In the libraries of settlements the lessons of peace were held, within the framework of the “We are for Peace” regional action, where the library leaders told the readers about the Day of Peace. The children rang the little bell so that its ringing made everyone think about how fragile our world is, which means that it must be protected. Multicolored balloons were released into the sky. In the rural libraries of Hamavurt, Kandauraul, Pokrovskoye, Temiraul, Pyatiletka, Boragan-gechu, Botashurt, there have been organized talks on peace.

IVANOVO, RUSSIA: Using Skype the students and teachers sang songs with teachers and students from other countries.

KAZAN, TATARSTAN, RUSSIA: More than 2,000 students of the Kazan Federal University took part in a large-scale flash mob. In the sky were launched white doves – the symbols of peace, as well as white and blue balloons.  

KAZAN, TATARSTAN, RUSSIA: In the house of culture “Peace” will be a holiday in honor of the International Day of Peace – “Let’s live in peace!”. The day-to-day activities of the United Nations to maintain peace and tranquility, to comprehend the existing world problems – that’s what the organizers of the event want to draw to the attention of children and parents. For the youngest members of the Peace Club there will also be organized a program where the children will draw the emblem of the “dove of peace” and understand the meaning of peace for each person.

KAZAN, TATARSTAN, RUSSIA: September 21 in the Gorkinsko-Ometyevsk Forest there will be a large-scale concert for the Day of Peace and Harmony. The holiday will begin at 15:00, the concert program with creative numbers – at 18:00. The territory of the event is the main stage for the participation of creative teams and music groups, student pop stars and foreign collectives, as well as a venue for the conduct of actions and entertainment for the city’s residents. The program of the concert includes a lot of activities, master classes and interactive venues for guests:
• master class on acting from the founder of the school of acting “Broadway”;
• a master class on painting from the artist Catherine Manko;
• Lecture “Travel as transformation” from the traveler and writer Renata Smirnova;
• Transformation game “Women’s Alchemy” from the female coach Kadria Gafarova;
• a collection of puzzle size 3×2 m, etc.
During the whole event, the “Postcard to a friend” platform will function, which will allow participants to send a postcard to anywhere in the world. It is also planned to hold a “Ethnoobjective” photocross for photographers. The event will end with a massive launch of balloons into the sky under the motto “We are peace!” The organizers of the Concert are the Regional Public Organization “The Academy of Creative Youth of the Republic of Tatarstan” with the support of the Ministry of Youth Affairs of the Republic of Tatarstan.

KOSTROMA, RUSSIA: Kostroma schoolchildren also joined the social movement for the International Day of Peace. Teachers of Gymnasium No. 28 held an open lesson for children on October Square. Why is peace and harmony so important to all who live on Earth? The answer to this question was learned today by students of lower grades. They independently made paper doves and gave them to people passing by.

KAMENSK-URALSKY, RUSSIA: September 21 in the central square of Kamensk-Uralsky will be the All-Russian patriotic action “Dove of Peace” for the second time in the history of our city. The action is dedicated to the International Day of Peace. Its main goal is to honor the memory of the veterans who defeated fascism in the Second World War. Participants in the action – schoolchildren and students, will launch white doves and balloons into the sky, thereby expressing gratitude to the front-line soldiers and workers of the rear and pay tribute to their immortal feat in the name of peace on earth. .The organizers of the event – the Center for Youth Policy of Kamensk-Uralsky invite residents of the city to become active participants of this event.

KARGAPOLSKY DISTRICT, KURGAN OBLAST, RUSSIA: On September 21, the International Day of Peace was held in all educational institutions and institutions of culture and art in the Kargapolsky district, together with volunteer units, secondary professional education institutions under the motto “The right to peace: the seventieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights”. About 3000 children, teenagers, teachers and parents took part in the events. The children lit candles in memory of those who died defending the world, thinking about “What is Peace?”, “Why do we celebrate the Day of Peace?”. A minute of silence passed, at the end of which white doves, a symbol of peace, were released. More than 80 events were held: Peace Bell, We for Peace, Dove of Peace, We Are for Peace on the World, information watch cycles “Together for Peace: Respect, Security and Dignity for All”, ” Day of Peace “,” The world needs everyone “, drawings competitions on asphalt” Let there always be a sun “,” My happy planet “,” Peace to my house “, game programs” Journey on human rights “,” All right to know about the right ” “Children for Peace on Earth”, sports competitions.

KURGAN, RUSSIA: In “Secondary school №52”  students together with the volunteer detachment “Generation NEXT” (the head of the detachment – the teacher of history, social science Lusnikova Nelli Anatolievna) joined the Action “Dove of Peace.” Before the school, a flashmob “Peace Dove” was held in support of peace – a massive one-time launch of helium balloons with white paper doves attached along with Dunaevsky’s song “Fly, doves, fly.” On the same day, within the framework of the action, students of 9th grade of our school, participants of the volunteer squad “Generation NEXT” Egor I. and Maxim R. took part in the international video conference “Partnership of sister schools” in the framework of the international children’s and youth movement. Among the participants of the video conference were representatives of the Russian Embassies in Algeria, Azerbaijan, Serbia, the Lugansk People’s Republic, etc. The participants of the conference discussed issues of preservation and transfer of historical and cultural heritage, respect and development of friendly relations between peoples. 

KETOVO, KURGAN OBLAST,RUSSIA: On September 21, the International Day of Peace was held in the Ketovo Children and Youth Center. In the framework of patriotic education, the action “Dove of Peace” was held, conversations “What is Peace” were held, the students of the center made doves from paper, drew drawings on the theme “World Peace”, and the dance group “Mirage” organized a flash-mob.

MIASS, CHELYABINSK REGION, RUSSIA: Elementary school students cut out white paper doves as the symbol of Peace. Students in grades 1-3 decorated their classrooms with them, and the fourth graders also painted by themselves. Let the sky be peaceful forever, let there be no war ever!

MOLZHANINOVSKY, RUSSIA: In Molzhaninovsky, they will hold a thematic event “Peace in the World” timed to coincide with the International Day of Peace. As reported in the administration of the municipal district Molzhaninovsky, the holiday will be arranged on Saturday, September 22. The event will be held in the district administration located on the street 4th Novoselki, 2. The beginning at 11.30. Admission is free for all comers.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA: Near the walls of the Victory Museum on Poklonnaya Hill on September 21, 2018 as part of the “Dove of Peace” campaign there will be a flashmob dedicated to the international day of peace About 500 students from various schools in the capital will release balloons with attached paper doves to the sky. It is specified that for participants in the flashmob there will be adistribution of St. George ribbons, which you can take as a memory or tie to your dove. After the flashmob during the whole working day of the museum it will be possible to support the action by attaching a paper dove to the special construction “Dove of Peace” at the entrance to the building.

NEKRASOVKA, RUSSIA: Nekrasovka will celebrate the International Day of Peace with a concert, “The Stars Are Lighting At Us,” in the recreation center “Zarechie”. For the guests of our House of Culture the leading amateur art groups will perform, which after the summer break has already started creativity, – explained the art director of the institution Elena Andrukhan. The concert will begin at 18.00. The ticket price is 200 rubles.

NOVOKOSINO DISTRICT, MOSCOW, RUSSIA: Within the framework of the holiday, a thematic action “We are for Peace!” was organized at school № 2128 on September 21. According to the deputy director of the school Oksana Varchenko, the event has a strong message – to bring to people the danger and the ruinous nature of wars. Under the guidance of teachers there were organized class watches, promotions and exhibitions.

NOVOURALSK, RUSSIA: In our school, Novouralsk School No. 2, there was a single class hour “Spirituality Hour: Dove of Peace . ” Class leaders on a class watch spoke with children about the importance of preserving peace on planet Earth . Pupils of each class made doves and designed a large school panel “September 21 – International Day of Peace!”. On the same day, pupils of the 5th class held a rally and launched white balloons with paper doves and wishes of peace throughout the world. Help in organizing and holding the action “Dove of Peace” was provided by an individual businessman Nikolai Korchagin .

PETROZAVODSK, RUSSIA: In educational organizations, class hours will be held: “The world needs everyone”, “How to celebrate the Day of Peace in different countries”, “The history of the birth of the symbol” Dove of Peace “,” If you are kind … “, drawings and posters. Students of the school № 25 on the cinema club will remember about Samantha Smith, they will talk about the history of her life. And the smallest schoolchildren will make white cranes, the press service of the mayor’s office of the Karelian capital reports. On September 21 at 12:30 on the territory of the square near the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral an ecological action “For the sake of peace” will be held to plant trees with the participation of representatives of national public associations. In the ethnocultural center of the Karelian people, “The House of Men” on the street. Working, 9-a, will be a meeting of the Council of National Public Associations.

REVDA, SVERDLOVSK OBLAST, RUSSIA: On September 20 and 21, single hours of spirituality dedicated to the International Day of Peace were held at the IAOU Euroimgnasia. Lecture groups (junior and senior staff) of the Unarmy Detachment “Patriot” told the gymnasium students about the history of the holiday and about such a symbol of peace as the World Bell, cast from coins, which was gathered by children from 60 countries. We recalled the most famous symbol, the author of which was the Spanish painter Pablo Picasso – a white dove, holding an olive branch in his beak. The meaning of the word “tolerance” was discussed. At the end of the hour of spirituality, the lecturers gave the Euro-Ginamists paper white doves, so that, by writing the wishes of the world to the inhabitants of the planet Earth, they presented these little symbols to their relatives, relatives and passers-by on the streets of the city. Fifth-graders participated in the city action “Dove of Peace”, at which patriotic associations and volunteer detachments of educational organizations of the city, representatives of city veterans’ organizations gathered near the monument to Soldiers of the Internationalists. After the words of honorary guests of the event, the boys simultaneously released into the sky white balloons with white paper doves attached to them. White balloons carried away the names of deceased participants of the Great Patriotic War and the workers of the rear who devoted their lives to defending their native Motherland and establishing peace on the planet Earth.

ROSHAL, MOSCOW REGION, RUSSIA: On September 21, 2013, an event dedicated to the International Day of Peace was held in the KDOU “Kindergarten No. 1”. Today the students of the senior speech therapy group together with the Authorized Kupriyanova TV and the tutor Burukhina LB organized an integrated educational activity dedicated to this important day. We devoted the hour of the world to realize once again that the future lies in the hands of children, and from the very childhood we must learn to live together, understand each other and protect a fragile peace. The children painted the application of a dove (the symbol of peace) on the subject of the lesson.

SARATOV DISTRICT, RUSSIA On the International Day of Peace, the Saratov Historical and Patriotic Complex “Museum of Combat and Labor Glory” presented an exhibition of a painting by artist Alexei Krasnov – “Shaolin Square”. In the picture, the artist painted the square of the Shaolin monastery in anticipation of receiving guests. In 2018, Alexei Gennadievich Krasnov was on a creative expedition in China, where he made many paintings about life in the Shaolin Monastery. He became the first Russian artist invited by the rector of the monastery Shi Yong-xing to popularize the values ​​of the Shaolin monastery around the world in the language of painting.

SMOLENSK, RUSSIA: Photos of students at the MBOU School #33 releasing balloons of peace.

SIMFEROPOL, CRIMEA, RUSSIA: Within the framework of the celebration of the Day of Peace, a mini-exhibition of the puppets of the peoples of Russia in national traditional costumes made by the students of the Department of Decorative Arts, the Faculty of the History of Arts, the Crimean Tatar language and the literature of the Crimean Engineering and Pedagogical University is presented in the SB RK “Crimean Tatar Museum of Cultural and Historical Heritage”.

SATKINSKY, CHELYABINSK REGION, RUSSIA: The rehabilitation center of the Satkinsky Municipal District hosted events dedicated to the International Day of Peace. On September 22, the students of the center, under the guidance of teachers Tatyana Kuznetsova and Nadezhda Utenkova, visited the city square of Slava, the city of Bakal, where they remembered the heroic deeds of fellow countrymen and laid flowers to the obelisk to soldiers who died during the Great Patriotic War. On September 23, the teacher-organizer Irina Varakina and tutor Tatyana Kuznetsova conducted an entertaining game program “I’m for peace in the whole world” for the inmates of the center , during which the guys fought with swords, participated in the quiz, guessed riddles, discussed the problems of our time – the most important of which is the fight against terrorism. A pupil of the center, Igor P., shared his impressions after the program : “I myself now tried to fight with swords, as Russian soldiers fought. Russian swords are a great weapon. But it is better to live in peace with everyone! ”

(Survey continued in right column)

Question for this article

What has happened this year (2018) for the International Day of Peace?

(Survey continued from left column)

ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA: September 21, within the framework of the Second Eurasian Forum in the Peter and Paul Fortress, an action was held timed to the International Day of Peace. Representatives of St. Petersburg public organizations and guests of the Forum took part in the event. The participants of the action paid a minute of silence to the memory of victims of violence, wars and terrorism. Then, addressing the assembled women, the Chairman of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, Valentina Matvienko, made a speech. She noted that it is women leaders who are always at the forefront and are distinguished by a special strength of spirit, intellectual spiritual potential. They make a great contribution to the development of the person’s personality and the renewal of the world.A concert was held at the Cathedral Square, which clearly showed how people of different nationalities are getting along in Russia. Guests of the holiday could hear Udmurt songs, see traditional dances of Ossetians, Koryaks, Georgians and other peoples. The action ended with a symbolic action – the participants of the event released doves into the sky over Petersburg.

TAGANROG, ROSTOV OBLAST, RUSSIA: Young volunteers of our school (Tag 21) conducted “линейки” for students of the primary school. Traditionally, the celebration of this Day begins at the Peace Bell. The students of our school joined the World Action. Our bell is small, but its ringing will make everyone think: how fragile our world is, and therefore it must be protected! This is our voice of memory, peace and joy.

SVERDLOVSK REGION, RUSSIA: Residents of the Sverdlovsk region took part in the action “Dove of Peace” in the framework of the International Day of Peace. September 21, Participants of the action launched balloons into the sky with white doves, on which were written the names of the deceased warriors of the Great Patriotic War. The deputy director of the regional center of patriotic education, Galina Yakovleva, said that this event is aimed at expressing solidarity to all people and showing that we are for peace. In Yekaterinburg pupils of schools and students of universities and colleges joined the action.  Participating towns included Serov, Krasnouralsk, Kamensk-Uralsky, Revda and other cities and towns in the region, according to the “Official website of the government of the Sverdlovsk region” .

VOLGOGRAD, RUSSIA: On September 21, the International Day of Peace, Volgograd residents will be able to help homeless people by giving unneeded clothing, in the framework of the third citywide action “Shade in the Window”. As the representatives of the charity organization Caritas-Volgograd said, they chose this name because the lampshade in the window for all of us is a symbol of a cozy family evening and a peaceful life. Volunteers plan to attract the attention of citizens to people who have no shelter.  Within the framework of the event, all comers will be able to show creative activity and  solidarity  with people left without a home: draw “their window” or make a selfie or photo in the window frame, and find a good neighbor-interlocutor. The action “Shade in the Window” will begin at 4 pm on the square in front of the entrance to the Catholic Church of St. Nicholas, which is located in the Central District of Volgograd.

VOLGOGRAD, RUSSIA: MOU kindergarten No. 96 of Krasnooktyabrsky district of Volgograd is preparing to celebrate the International Day of Peace.  It is very useful and important to talk with children about the most important thing – about the world on the planet. Children will know where this holiday came from, get acquainted with its symbols. The future is in the hands of children. It is necessary to teach children to live together, understand each other and protect a fragile peace.

OLOKONOVKA, BELGOROD REGION, RUSSIA: at 7 Pionerskaya Street, Skype sessions were held with students and educators around the world with peace messages and discussion about what peace means for you personally. Other activities included singing a song about peace in Russian and in English, making origami doves as a symbol of peace, making a paper peace chain, Peace wordsearch and a Peace cycle race.

VORONEZH, RUSSIA: A single hour of spirituality “Dove of Peace”, timed to the International Day of Peace, was organized in the educational institutions of Voronezh.. Dozens of general education schools, kindergartens, as well as institutions of additional education joined the mass patriotic flash mob. In the kindergarten of General Education No. 157, the event was prepared in advance: the pupils themselves cut dove figurines out of paper, and at home together with their parents wrote the names of their grandmothers and grandfathers who participated and died in the Great Patriotic War, and also worked these years in the rear.

YAMAL-NENETS AUTONOMOUS DISTRICT, RUSSIA On the International Day of Peace the first-year students of the Kurgan State University and the staff of the representative office of the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous District will tell about the international ecological expedition to the island of Velkitsky. Also, the students will be presented with the international forum-festival of youth “We are for Peace in the World”, which is held annually in Bulgaria.

YEREVAN, ARMENIA: The International Day of Peace celebrations in school № 194 on September 21 included singing, dancing, and artwork for the students, followed by a presentation to teachers about peacemaking activities. We organized two competitions for students on the theme “I am drawing peace.” About 10 participants from ages 8 to 12 painted on paper, and about 150 participants from ages 6 to 12 drew with colored chalks on the pavement in front of the school.

BAKU, AZERBAIJAN: The International Museum of Peace marked the International Day of Peace in Baku, September 21. In connection with this, on the joint initiative of the Azerbaijan carpet museum and the Sabail district of YAP (The New Azerbaijan Party, Yeni Azərbaycan Partiyası) on September 14 in the conference hall of the museum a conference was held, the purpose of which was to educate the younger generation about the significance of the International Day of Peace, celebrated on September 21. The participants of the event got acquainted with the exhibition of children’s works on the theme “Peace – Peace!”, Organized by the Children’s Museum Department in the foyer of the Azerbaijan Carpet Museum. The children’s choir “Banovsha” named after Afsar Javanshirova of the Azerbaijan State Television and Radio made a concert at the event. The event ended in front of the Azerbaijani carpet museum, where children launched white pigeons and colorful balloons symbolizing the world.

BARANOVICHI DISTRICT, BELORUS:Today, the International Day of Peace, the action “Child of Peace” was held at the “Stolovichi Secondary School” of the Baranovichi District wirh he chairman of the regional organization of the Belarusian Peace Foundation.

BOBRUISK, BELORUS: A music and entertainment program “DETSKOKE” dedicated to the Day of Peace was held on September 22, 2018 for children of the State Institution “The Palace of Arts of Bobruisk”. Clowns had fun with the children at the disco, held dance contests, interesting and fascinating games, sports relay races, in which the children were pleased to participate.

BREST, BELORUS: This year, the traditional event in support of the International Day of Peace – “Day of Peace in Brest 2018” will take place with the organization and effective support of the Brest Regional Center for the Olympic Rowing Reserve. The participant needs to purchase a lamp in advance in order to float it on the “alley of peace”. The lighting time is at 20:00. Within the framework of the event, there will be a concert with participation of both young performers and already known in our city vocalists and dance groups, For the first time in the history of this event, an hour-long youth disco is planned to be run by our young radio host, performer Dmitry Nogovitsyn, starting at 20:15.

GANTSEVICHI, BELORUS: On this day, the workers of the cinema “Maladossi” held an action, where the children wrote wishes on paper doves. These birds, which are symbols of peace, were attached by schoolchildren to balloons and released into the sky.

GORODOK, VITEBSK, BELORUS:The School of Peace, the first in the Vitebsk region, opened today in Gorodok on the initiative of the regional branch of the Belarusian Peace Foundation, with the support of local authorities, and is located on the basis of secondary school №1. This initiative is implemented in the republic through the regional and regional branches of the Belarusian Peace Foundation. Schools of peace have already been set up in the Gomel region, in Minsk, and it would be wrong if it were not organized in the Vitebsk region, which suffered badly during the Great Patriotic War. Gradually, they will appear in other parts of the region. So, Miory, Glubokoe, Sharkovshina have already shown interest. The opening of the school took place in the framework of the international gathering of young envoys of the world, which was organized in Vitebsk for the first time and united the children of Gorodokhshchina, Shumilinshchina and the town of Dedenevo in the Moscow region. The site was the health camp “Orion” in the village of Kabishche. From September 20 to 22 schoolchildren from Belarus and Russia exchanged opinions and lived a rich social life. It is symbolic that the events took place on September 21 – the International Day of Peace.

VOLKOVYSK, GRODNO REGION, BELARUS: Of course, our gymnasium can not but take part in the actions that are taking place this day around the world. Our “Cranes of the World” are the traditional ones, which children make themselves and give out to passers-by near the shops, in order to remind people again that peace is important for children on the planet.

ABKHASIA, GEORGIA Organized by the Government of the Autonomous Republic of Abkhazia and suported by the Charity Humanitarian Center “Abkhazeti” the conference “The word existed first- Journalism of War and Peace” was held at Betsy’s Hotel. An exhibition of IDPs (internally displaced persons) from Abkhazia dedicated to the International Day of Peace were held at the Betsy’s Hotel, as well. At the end of the conference participants received the appeal of Abkhazian colleagues.

KAZAKHSTAN: The celebration of the International Day of Peace in the State Bank of the Republic of Kazakhstan “Crimean Tatar Museum of Cultural and Historical Heritage” is held to draw visitors’ attention to the day-to-day activities of the UN to maintain peace and tranquility on our planet, to commemorate and strengthen the ideals of peace both within and between nations and peoples. At the stand for visitors will be posted information about this holiday, which is very important for people around the world. At the mini-exhibition puppets will be presented in national traditional costumes of some peoples of the world, reflecting their culture, traditions and history.

BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN: Writing from School-gymnasium No. 63, on September 21, in Bishkek, Victory Square hosted an event timed to the International Day of Peace. During the holiday, the action “Dove of Peace” was held, in which labor veterans, participants of armed conflicts, students and schoolchildren, including our students, took part. The participants stood with balloons, which, as planned, were launched into the sky. Of course, for some of us, peace is an everyday reality. Our streets are calm, our children go to school. Where the foundations of society are strong, the priceless gift of peace can not be particularly noticed by anyone.

TRANSNISTRIA, MOLDOVA: The first large-scale action to the Day of Peace in Transnistria was held by the youth organization Zvezda. The column passed from the boulevard. Yuri Gagarin to the square. A. Suvorov. On the occasion of the holiday, a drawing contest took place in the capital’s square. At the end of the action, dozens of white doves – a symbol of peace – were released into the sky.

ELIZAVETOVKA, UKRAINE: To draw the attention of the pupils of our school and their parents to the theme of peace on the whole Earth, volunteers from the organization “Memory” will introduce students to this date. Throughout the day at the school, students and parents will receive the emblems of white doves.

KAMENSKOYE, UKRAINE: Kamenskaya secondary school No. 31 is annually attached to the celebration of this holiday. On Friday, September 21, the leaders of the student’s self-government organized and held for the schoolchildren the “Song Opening Day of Peace” and a dance flash mob “Children of the World – for Peace!”.

KHARKIV, UKRAINE: The International Day of Peace was celebrated In the park Kvitki-Osnovyanenko.

KIEV, UKRAINE: On the morning of September 21, the action “Peace and Unity for Ukraine!” Was held on the square at the National Museum of History of Ukraine in World War II. One of the integral actions of the Day of Peace, beginning in 1986, is the symbolic Peace Procession initiated by Indian peacemaker Sri Chinmoy. The event was attended by more than 2,000 people who honored the memory of those who died in Afghanistan with the laying on of flowers.The procession column was opened by a brass band with a banner, followed by cadets, military and children’s dance groups in embroideries. Mass performance with dancing accompanied by live music became the main part of the program. The square itself was decorated with blue and yellow balloons and flags of Ukraine, and the final of the celebration was the launch of hundreds of balloons into the sky, as a symbol of faith in a peaceful future.

KIEV, UKRAINE: In Kiev, the International Day of Peace was celebrated. The organizers of the rally were warned that provocations were possible after yesterday’s heated clashes with the police under the walls of the Verkhovna Rada. Participants gathered at 10 o’clock in the morning at the monument to teachers and students of the Kiev Polytechnic Institute, who died during the Great Patriotic War. They included members of the public movement “The Power of Good” , the Kyiv City Organization of Veterans, the Anti-Fascist Forum, the Union of Ukrainian Officers and other public organizations. They unfurled a large poster with the inscription “Not good in strength, but in goodness of strength”, thus declaring the peaceful nature of the event and calling for non-violence and an end to the war. In the hands of the participants were white balls with the image of the dove of the world and red carnations. Opening the rally, the chairman of the Kiev city veteran organization Nikolay Martynov said: “Ukraine is tired of the war. We must grow bread, build factories and plants, raise children and grandchildren, and not send them to the slaughterhouse. We want to listen to melodic Ukrainian songs, and not to flinch from the rumble of shells and the whistle of bullets. Tamara Grabovaya , the chairman of the Kyiv city organization of the All-Ukrainian Union of Women Workers said “We, Ukrainian mothers, do not want our children to die. Let the war end!”

KURAKHIV, UKRAINE: September 22, when the whole world celebrates the International Day of Peace, the Kurakhiv city center of culture and leisure held a city action, a thematic program “I want to live without war!”. All educational and preschool institutions, creative collectives and simply residents of Kurakhovo took part in it.

MARAZLIEVSKOY, UKRAINE: Schoolchildren of the Marazlievskoy community took part in a flash mob “We are for peace” The pupils of the lower grades lined up in the shape of a heart in whose center was the Ukrainian flag. In addition, the school conducted an educational lesson on the topic “We want to live in peace” and the a clsss hour “Peace on Earth.”

ODESSA, UKRAINE On the Day of Peace on the Potemkin Stairs in Odessa, a bright flash mob was held with the participation of schoolchildren, cadets, members of the public and clergy. The organizers are the Odessa Regional Council of Peace. The event was timed to coincide with the 16th anniversary of the proclamation of the International Day of Peace. More than 500 flashmob participants marched from Dumskaya Square along Primorsky Boulevard to the monument to Duke de Richelieu. On the Potemkin Stairs, students, cadets, members of the public lined up, forming the word “Peace”, and performed the Prayer for Peace. A concert took place in the square, during which the artistic collectives of the city presented the dances of different nations of the world.

(Note: the following cities are claimed by the Ukraine, but have declared their independence as the Donetsk People’s Republic or the Lugansk People’s Republic.)

DONETSK, UKRAINE: The ethno-restaurant “Yo-Moe” invites all residents and guests of the city of Donetsk to celebrate the good and truly bright holiday of the “International Day of Peace” wth peace contests, “light” gifts and a mood of peace and good fun. September 21 starting at 18:00.
You are invited.

DONETSK, UKRAINE: Russian performers Alexander Buynov, Tatiana Lipnitskaya (Bianca), Olga Kormukhina and the band City 312 will perform in Donetsk on September 20 for the International Day of Peace . The concert will take place on the main square of the capital – Lenin Square.  The concert is organized with the assistance of the Russian Center.

KRAMATORSK, UKRAINE: September 21 in honor of the International Day of Peace at the central park  A. Pushkin, a mass flash mob was organized by students of Kramatorsk. The guys in white T-shirts with the logo of the 150th anniversary of Kramatorsk danced very brightly and vigorously, and in the end they congratulated the city on Happy Birthday! As it was, you can look in our small video, and if you want to see the flashmob live and completely, then you come to the central square of the city on September 22, at 17-00!

STANITSA-LUGANSK, UKRAINE: In Luganskaya Stanitsa, the International Day of Peace was celebrated. This was reported by the press service of the Lugansk Regional Military District. Talented artists and collectives of cities and districts of the region, international partners, people’s masters of Ukraine – Anzhelika Rudnitskaya, Olga Nesterenko, Maria Kononova, Nikita Gross and the group took part in the festive event “Peace and Unity Day” under the slogan “Stanitsa-Lugansk – Ukraine”. “GG Walk the City.”

In addition to the above events, One Day One Choir lists participating choirs for the International Day of Peace in :
Armenia (DILIJAN)
Russia (TYUMEN, VORONEZH, MOSCOW)

And the map of Montessori schools singing for peace on the International Day of Peace includes schools in:
Kazakhstan (ALMATY)
Russia (MOSCOW, YAROSLAVL, KOROLYOV in MOSCOW DISTRICT)
Ukraine (KHARKIV, KIEV)

Why India’s Solar Water-Drawing ATMs and Irrigation Pumping Systems Offer Replicable Strategies

…. HUMAN RIGHTS ….

An article from The Inter Press Service News Agency (reprinted by permission)

At New Delhi’s Savda Ghevra slum settlement, waterborne diseases have become less frequent thanks to solar-powered water ATMs that were installed here as a social enterprise venture three years ago.

“The water is cheap, reliable and fresh-tasting,” Saeeda, a mother of three who lives close to an ATM, tells IPS. Each day, Saeeda collects up to 15 litres of water from the ATM, paying 30 paisa per litre for the water with a rechargeable card. It means she pays 4.5 Rupees (about 6 US cents) for 15 litres of pure drinking water. It is convenient and cheap as bottled drinking water costs about 20 Rupees (about 30 US cents).


A man draws water from a solar-powered water ATM in New Delhi’s Savda Ghevra slum settlement. Thanks to these machines, which allow users to withdraw water with a rechargeable card, waterborne diseases have become less frequent here. Credit: Ranjit Devraj/IPS

Installed by Piramal Sarvajal, as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility, the decentralised drinking water project for urban slums now provides access to clean water to some 10,000 families in six slum clusters, Amit Mishra, the project’s operations manager, tells IPS.

Mishra says that each water ATM, though locally operated through a franchise system and powered using solar panels, is centrally controlled through cloud technology that integrates 1,100 touch points in 16 states. The result is reduced costs that allow round-the-clock provision of pure drinking water to underserved communities.
Sarvajal Piramal is not the only group that has set up solar-powered water ATMs in New Delhi or other parts of Delhi. Solar-powered water ATMs are part of a plan to use solar power to supply water for India’s vast 1.3 billion people, not only for drinking, but also for agricultural use.

“This is the kind of decentralised, neighbourhood solutions that the Global Green Growth Initiative (GGGI) is interested in,” the Netherlands-based group’s deputy director and water sector lead, Peter Vos, tells IPS. “However, solutions of this type may not be ideal in all situations, since the networks may require a lot of maintenance and can be costly.”

GGGI, says Vos, is interested in promoting policies that allow efficient use of limited water resources sustainably and at reasonable cost. “We do this by embedding ourselves in key ministries concerned with renewable energy, rural development as well as water and sanitation.”

Currently, GGGI has an approved budget of USD 1.37 million dollars for knowledge sharing, transfer of green technologies and capacity building in order to meet global commitments towards implementation of India’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) under the Paris agreement. “Facilitating the flow of domestic and international climate finance and investment would be a key contribution to support India’s NDC implementation,” Vos says.

(Article continued in the right column)

Questions related to this article:

Is the right to water a basic human right?

Are we making progress in renewable energy?

(Article continued from the left column)

India’s setting up of the International Solar Alliance, an alliance that facilitates cooperation among sun-rich countries, provides GGGI an opportunity to disseminate renewable energy best practices with 18 GGGI member countries and seven partner countries—India and China are partner countries and prospective members.

As a predominantly agricultural country, with the world’s largest irrigated area serviced by some 26 million groundwater pumps mostly run on diesel or electricity, GGGI is keenly interested in India’s plans to switch to the use of solar power for irrigation.

Electric pumps are considered unreliable and diesel is costly. To keep them running, India spends about USD 6 million in annual subsidies that create their own distortions. Farmers tend to waste electricity as well as water thanks to the subsidies, Vos explains.

Under India’s National Solar Mission programme, farmers are now supported with capital cost subsidies for solar pump systems. A credit-linked subsidy scheme invites local institutions across the country to provide loans to reduce the subsidy burden on the government and make the system affordable for farmers.

According to a GGGI study released in 2017, the ‘context-specific delivery models’ used in the solar pump programme have resulted in noteworthy initial successes in terms of economic and social benefits, emission reductions, reduced reliance on subsides, increased agricultural output, development of new businesses, job-creation and improved incomes and livelihoods in rural areas.

India’s models offer replicable strategies to support solar irrigation pumping systems in other countries where GGGI has a presence, says Vos. In fact, the Indian government has plans to export solar pumping systems and expertise to countries interested in greener alternatives for irrigation.

According to the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), irrigation is becoming an important part of global agricultural production, consuming about 70 percent of global freshwater resources and reliable irrigation. However, using solar-powered systems can increase crop yields four-fold and can be key to national objectives like achieving food security.

Over the last 25 years India’s ministry of new and renewable energy, a GGGI partner, has developed specialised programmes for both drinking water as well as irrigation systems using solar water pumping systems of which there are now an estimated 15,000 units.

The progress has not been entirely without a hitch and, so far, the solar water-pumping market has remained relatively small primarily due to high up-front capital costs and low awareness among farmers as well as users of drinking water provided through ATMs.

A study of the Savda Ghevra slum showed that it took 18 months before the first ATM could be provided to Piramal Sarvajal. And then only 37 percent of the residents were using the ATMs as a primary or secondary source of potable water.

The study found that the ATMs were more than covering operating costs and generating revenue for Piramal Sarvajal, and could reach a wider population with government or other support, especially in the rural areas. The monies generated by Piramal Sarvajal are used to pay salaries and to maintain the machines.

According to the government’s own figures, presented in parliament in 2017; out of 167.8 million households in rural India only 2.9 million or 16 percent have access to safe drinking water. GGGI with its  considerable experience and expertise around the world is well-placed to step in, says Vos.

(Thank you to Janet Hudgins, the CPNN reporter for this article.)

India strides towards clean energy leadership

.. SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT ..

An article by L. Michael Buchsbaum in Energy Transition: the Global Energiewende

It looked as if India’s plan to power up the country using coal would be a disaster for the environment. But renewables changed the game: they currently make up 20% of the energy mix and are growing fast. L. Michael Buchsbaum explains.


New solar and wind in India are now 20% cheaper to build than coal (Photo by Raj, edited,CC BY 2.0)

Illustrative of India’s economic miracle, just this spring, its last village without access to electricity was finally connected to the energy grid. But to fuel this growth, beginning in 2010 India rapidly initiated development of almost 1,000 gigawatts (GW) of new coal-fired energy. With the fifth largest domestic coal reserves worldwide, and Australian and Chinese mines eager to supply immediate demand, India’s economic miracle seemed like game over for the health of planet Earth.

But nearly simultaneous to their swift coal build up, India also began developing green energy. Though only 20% of the current energy mix, roughly 70 GW of renewable capacity has been installed and at least another 40 GW is under construction according to the latest government data.

With around 11,788 megawatts (MW) more being added between April 2017 and March 2018, India is now positioned 4th globally in wind, and 6thin solar. Additionally, last year the renewable energy sector created 47,000 new jobs while sustaining almost 400,000 more positions, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

The sheer pace of India’s adoption of renewables has reduced aggregate installation and production costs by 50% over the last two years according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), flipping earlier economic projections and torpedoing plans for hundreds of megawatts of new coal power. Though coal still supplied 80% of the economy last year, new wind and solar is now 20% cheaper than existing coal-fired generation’s average wholesale power price. Moreover, rising domestic production costs, the doubling of imported coal prices and a crippling delivery shortage continues to plague the industry. Currently new renewable energy is less expensive to build than it costs to run most of the existing coal fired power in the nation—let alone construct new plants.

Case in point: in June the state owned utility, NTPC, the largest owner and developer of coal plants in India, cancelled its planned 4 GW Pudimadaka “Ultra Mega” Power Plant project in the state of Andhra Pradesh. No longer economical, according to the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), since the 2010 build out announcement, India’s coal plant pipeline has shrunk by 547 GW.

(Continued in right column)

Question for this article:

Are we making progress in renewable energy?

(Continued from left column)

To put that into perspective, that figure amounts to almost three times Germany’s total installed capacity. And while 80 GW of new coal-fired capacity is still technically “progressing” through myriad approval processes, IEEFA estimates that no more than 10-20 GW might actually see the light of day. “That means more than 84% of India’s 2010 coal pipeline will have been cancelled when all is said and done,” said Tim Buckley, IEEFA’s Director of Energy Finance Studies, Australasia.

Moreover, under the nation’s 2018 National Energy Plan (NEP), India’s Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has recently proposed closing nearly 50 GW of inefficient and heavily polluting coal capacity by 2027. Retrofitting those that remain open to achieve new compliance standards will cost millions more, forcing operators to reconsider future investments as renewables elbow them out.

So how will India keep both the existing lights on and enable millions more citizens to power up? The new NEP calls for an incredible 275 GW of total renewable energy capacity by 2027. In June the trajectory for the build-out was increased to no less than 227 GW by 2022. At these rates, clean energy is projected by BNEF to constitute 75% of total capacity by 2050, essentially inverting the status quo.

Illustrative of this leap forward, on June 21, India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) R.K. Singh announced a 100GW solar tender, with an emphasis on battery storage and domestic solar manufacturing. This announcement follows on the heels of plans for 8-10GW of annual onshore wind installations, plus an ambitious 30GW of offshore wind by 2030. Under the Paris Climate agreement, India had already committed to produce 40% of its installed electricity capacity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030. Singh has since vowed to have over 55% installed by then.

While an enormous task, a large portion of the support and financing for this is coming from Japan’s richest man, SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son, who has reportedly told Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi that he will underwrite most of the 100GW of new solar with a US$60-100 billion investment.

But can this and the overall 275 GW target realistically be met on time? While not sure if the giant solar tender “makes a lot of sense”, IEEF director Buckley, offered instead that the plan is indeed a “brilliant statement of intent.” Certainly, by setting the aspirational goal, India has attracted investors and further spurred the development of their domestic manufacturing industry. Tulsi Tanti, chairman and managing director of the Suzlon Group, one of the nation’s leading wind energy suppliers, expects that there will be at least two million workers employed in the wind energy manufacturing industries by 2022. Suzlon currently commands a 35% share of the market since over 8,500 of their turbines with a cumulative generation capacity of 11,919 MW power it. “In the next financial year, a minimum of 1 GW more [of wind energy] installation will happen every month,” Tanti said as the nation ramps towards 50-60MW of total wind capacity.

While coal will continue to constitute India’s baseload energy backbone for the next few decades as a hedge against intermittency, its role will diminish as the grid becomes better integrated, more decentralized and additional battery power comes on line. “We have missed the first and second industrial revolutions,” Minister Singh said recently. “We caught up with the digital revolution, but we need to lead this revolution towards clean energy and renewable energy.”

‘Billion Tree Tsunami’ transforms arid Pakistan region into green gold

. . SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT . .

An article from The Hindu (Copyright THG Publishing Private Limited, reprinted as non-commercial use)

Around the region of Heroshah, previously arid hills are now covered with forest as far as the horizon. In northwestern Pakistan, hundreds of millions of trees have been planted to fight deforestation.

In 2015 and 2016, some 16,000 labourers planted more than 9,00,000 fast-growing eucalyptus trees at regular, geometric intervals in Heroshah — and the titanic task is just a fraction of the effort across the Province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.


Greenery all around: Pervaiz Manan, head of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa forest department, who oversaw the re-vegetation of Heroshah district.   Photo Credit: AFP

Control against erosion

“Before it was completely burnt land. Now they have green gold in their hands,” commented forest manager Pervaiz Manan as he displayed pictures of the site previously, when only sparse blades of tall grass interrupted the monotonous landscape.

The new trees will reinvigorate the area’s scenic beauty, act as a control against erosion, help mitigate climate change, decrease the chances of floods and increase the chances of precipitation, says Mr. Manan, who oversaw the re-vegetation of Heroshah.

Residents also see them as an economic boost — which, officials hope, will deter them from cutting the new growth down to use as firewood in a region where electricity can be sparse.

“Now our hills are useful, our fields became useful,” says driver Ajbir Shah. “It is a huge benefit for us.”

Further north, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Swat, many of the high valleys were denuded by the Pakistan Taliban during their reign from 2006 to 2009.

Now they are covered in pine saplings. “You can’t walk without stepping on a seedling,” smiles Yusufa Khan, another forest department worker.

The Heroshah and Swat plantations are part of the “Billion Tree Tsunami”, a provincial government programme that has seen a total of 300 million trees of 42 different species planted across the province.

A further 150 million plants were given to landowners, while strict forest regeneration measures have allowed the regrowth of 730 million trees — roughly 1.2 billion new trees in total, says the programme’s management.

Kamran Hussain, a manager of the Pakistani branch of the World Wildlife Fund, who conducted an independent audit of the project, says their figures showed slightly less — but still above target at 1.06 billion trees.

(Article continued in the right side of the page)

Question for this article:

When you cultivate plants, do you cultivate peace?

(Article continued from the left side of the page)

“We are 100% confident that the figure about the billion trees is correct,” he said, highlighting the transparency of the process. “Everything is online. Everyone has access to this information.”

The programme has been praised by the head of the Swiss-based International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a green NGO, which called it a “true conservation success story”.

Initially mocked for what critics said were unrealistic objectives, it is a welcome change to the situation elsewhere in the country.

Pakistani authorities say just 5.2% of the country is covered by forest, against the 12% recommended by the United Nations.

Just one big tree remains in the poverty-stricken village of Garhi Bit in the southern province of Sindh, shading its small mosque.

It has stood there for a century, locals say.

“Before, there were big trees, many kinds of them,” says Dad Mohammad, a 43-year-old farmer.

“But they started to dry because of the lack of water, so we cut them,” he says, pointing to hundreds of metres of cultivated land where previously there stood a forest. More than 60% of the forests lining Sindh’s riverbanks have disappeared in the last 60 years, mainly due to river depletion and massive logging during the 1980s, says Riaz Ahmed Wagan, of the provincial forest department. “It is a disaster,” he says, adding that forestry remains the lowest priority on the agenda of the provincial governments.

The “Billion Tree Tsunami”, which cost the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government $169 million, started in November 2014. Officials say they are still implementing maintenance safeguards such as fire protection, with the project due to be completed in June 2020.

Green Pakistan Project

In early 2017, the federal government announced its own Green Pakistan Project, which aims to plant 100 million trees in five years across the country.

It ranges from “legislative reforms” to “wildlife protection”, according to its leader Ibrahim Khan, who works under the authority of the Ministry for Climate Change. More than a quarter of the work was done by the end of April 2018, he says.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is ruled by Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, the political party headed by former cricketer Imran Khan, which is the main challenger to the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) as the country heads into a general election in July 2018.

Mr. Imran Khan has vowed to make the environment an election issue, and to plant a total of 10 billion trees across the country. “Every child in Pakistan should be aware of the environmental issue which, until now, has been a non-issue,” he told AFP.

But it is yet to be seen whether his ambitions will translate into votes.

Pakistani environmental lawyer and activist Ahmad Rafay Allam says that in a country where the electorate is often swayed by infrastructure projects rather than the environment, he has doubts.

“It would be a first,” he told AFP.

Nobel Women’s Initiative: Standing with Rohingya Women, Spotlighting Survivors for World Refugee Day

. . TOLERANCE AND SOLIDARITY . .

A press release received by email from web@nobelwomensinitiative.org

This World Refugee Day, we are spotlighting the plight of the Rohingya people with the ONLINE PREMIERE of our Standing with Rohingya Women short film. This five minute film follows our February delegation to Bangladesh with Nobel Peace laureates Tawakkol Karman, Shirin Ebadi, and Mairead Maguire, in partnership with Bangladeshi women’s right organization Naripokkho.


Video of the film

(Press release continued in right column)

Question for this article

The refugee crisis, Who is responsible?

(continued from left column)

Our delegation visited the refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar to investigate the situation of the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, particularly the violence against Rohingya women— including high levels of sexual violence.

Upon meeting with brave Rohingya women survivors of sexual violence at the hands of the Burmese military, it became clear that the atrocities committed against the Rohingya people were part of a larger campaign of state-sanctioned genocide. Over 700,000 Rohingya people were forced to flee their ancestral land in the Rakhine State in August 2017 after a crusade of violence committed against them by the Burmese forces. The laureates are calling that the Burmese government be held accountable for these atrocities at the International Criminal Court. With the devastating effects of the monsoon season in Bangladesh, the Rohingya people are in critical need of international aid and justice.

(Thank you to Janet Hudgins, the CPNN reporter for this article.)

India: Peace Channel promotes peace education in schools of Kohima

… EDUCATION FOR PEACE …

An article from Morung Express

Peace Channel conducted peace celebration and capacity building programmes in five schools of Kohima district – Little Flower Hr. Sec School, Kohima, Sacred Heart School, Khuzama, St. Paul School, Phesama, Don Bosco Hr. Sec. School, Kohima, and St. Andrews School, Jotsoma village – on the theme ‘Concept of peace and peace building’ in the months of March and April.


Participants of the programme organised by Peace Channel at Little Flower Hr. Sec School, Kohima.

Addressing the Peace Club members in the respective schools, Susan Kulnu, Peace Channel Kohima district coordinator emphasised on the main objective of peace and peace building

(continued in right column)

Question for this article:

Where is peace education taking place?

(continued from left column)

She motivated the students to understand the concept of peace, to think of peace, love peace and make peace so as to take up initiatives in one’s own home and locality, to transform a culture of violence into a culture of peace, stated a press release from Peace Channel.
 
Susan further spoke about human rights, which she said, are the vital assets for everyone. “These rights are interrelated, interdependent and indivisible,” she asserted. The speaker also emphasized on the principle of “Do No Harm” which is a holistic perspective that is focussed on mutual benefits and not win-lose situation. The students were also motivated on leadership and life skills.
 
Sedekieno Rino, a peace activist, also spoke on anti-war toys “as children are also seen to be manipulated into replicating the violent content they see on television, videos, video games or violent cartoons,” the release stated. She urged the students to dream of a peaceful society and put efforts of changing oneself towards promoting peace so that one day that dream will turn to a reality.
 
Altogether, 227 quality Peace Club members along with 10 teacher animators of different schools participated in the sessions, informed the release.
 
The participants have been encouraged to take initiatives in bringing peace wherever they are and “they are now to bring peoples together, striving for peace, justice, equality and fraternity.”
 
It was informed that Peace Channel is also undertaking similar programmes in other districts like Dimapur, Wokha, Mon, and Peren.

International Solar Alliance – A Symbol of Hope and Cooperation

.. SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT ..

An article by Dr Ravi P Bhatia from Transcend Media Service

Renewable energy is being tapped and promoted in many parts of the world to meet the challenges of environmental pollution, global warming and climate change. One of the main factors behind the environmental challenge is the factor of our dependence on coal powered energy production that is highly polluting and is causing various types of adverse effects including on the health of human beings.


These issues were discussed in great detail in the UN Convention of Climate Change held in Paris in December 2014 and commitments made by several countries including the major ones – USA, China, India, France Germany, Japan and others about taking measures to not increase the global warming beyond 1.5 degree Celsius by the end of the century. This would necessitate both financial commitments as well as by adopting technological measures such as stressing increased production and utilization of renewable energy.

As is well known by now, renewable energy does not have these adverse effects and hence it is being promoted worldwide. Of course tapping the renewable sources and putting them in practice have their own distinct difficulties but they do not cause the pollution that is so damaging. Renewable energy is produced mainly from the sun (solar energy), wind power, tidal waves. Great emphasis is being laid on harnessing the sun’s energy through the use of solar cells that convert sun’s rays into electricity.

(Continued in right column)

Question for this article:

Are we making progress in renewable energy?

(Continued from left column)

Unfortunately, USA appears to be backing out from its commitments on climate change made in Paris as well as the following year in Marrakesh. The responsibility of mitigating the effects of climate change is falling primarily on India, France and China. In order to meet the challenges of global warming and climate change, India had proposed an alliance of countries called the International Solar Alliance (ISA) two years back, with support of France and several countries of Africa, Asia and Latin America.

The first meeting of ISA is being held in New Delhi from 11 March with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the French President Emmanuel Macron co-chairing the inaugural meeting. Speaking on the occasion Mr. Modi referred to the wisdom of India’s ancient Vedas that had clearly stressed the importance of our Sun for sustaining life – human, animal and plant, on the Earth. This was manifested in India’s respect for the Sun in various epics and its Mantras. He stressed that “We have to look at the balanced and all-encompassing philosophy of the Vedas to meet the challenge of climate change. We have to take urgent steps towards this objective.” The French President also spoke about the significance of solar power and renewable energy to meet the global challenge and committed both financial and technological support for this noble venture.

It was stressed by both the leaders that with these commitments and the active support of the 32 countries that have ratified the framework agreement of the Alliance, the target of about 175 GW of energy from renewable sources could be met by the end of 2022. Of this, solar and wind energies would contribute 100 and 60 GW respectively.

Many participating countries also spoke in favor of renewable energy and promised that they would also take appropriate steps, however small they may be to promote renewable energy in their countries. They also sought financial and technological support which France and India agreed to provide.

The inaugural meeting of the Solar Alliance gives us hope that the challenges of environmental pollution, global warming and climate change are being recognized and addressed by many countries. This meeting also encourages the coming together of different nations — developed and developing, to meet common challenges through goodwill and cooperation.

Nobel Women Peace Laureates Call for an End to Rohingya Genocide

. . WOMEN’S EQUALITY . .

A press release from the Nobel Women’s Initiative

As three Nobel peace laureates—Tawakkol Karman of Yemen, Shirin Ebadi of Iran, and Mairead Maguire of Northern Ireland – conclude their visit to Bangladesh on the six-month anniversary of the current Rohingya crisis, the three women are calling for an immediate end to the “genocide” of the Rohingya people.


Mairead Maguire meets with Rohingya survivors of gender based violence in Kutupalong Rohingya refugee camp February 25, 2018 in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo by Allison Joyce

This week, the three women Laureates ­––in partnership with Bangladesh women’s organization Naripokkho­­––spent time listening to stories, meeting over 100 women refugees in the Cox’s Bazar area, and travelling to “no man’s land”, where thousands of Rohingya have been stranded between Myanmar and Bangladesh.

After hearing testimonies describing how security forces burned villages, tortured, killed and systematically raped women and girls—as well as reports from humanitarian organizations and UN officials—the Laureates concluded that the on-going attacks on the Rohingya of Rakhine State amount to crimes against humanity and genocide.

The Laureates are calling on Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and the Myanmar military to put an end to the killings and the persecution of the Rohingya people.

“She must stop turning a deaf ear to the persecution of the Rohingya or risk being complicit in the crimes,” said Tawakkol Karman. “Wake up or face prosecution.”

As women committed to peace, the Laureates are urging Aung San Suu Kyi to exercise her personal and moral responsibility stop the genocide. “If she fails to do so, her choice is clear: resign or be held accountable, along with the army commanders, for the crimes committed” added Karman.

The Laureates heard how Rohingya women have been twice victimized: for being Rohingyas and for being women. They described stories of horrific violence and systematic mass rape.

“My 18-year old daughter had her breasts cut off and she died,” a Rohingya woman in the Thyankhali camp told the Nobel peace laureates.

“My baby was only 1-year and 6-months old. The military tore her from my arms and slaughtered her in front of me,” said a Rohingya survivor of rape. She then passed around a photo she had of her child. She wanted everyone to see her little girl.

The laureates heard stories of children being thrown into fires and drowned in rivers. They heard stories of houses and complete villages being burned to the ground and children being shot while running to the forest to seek shelter and safety.

“The torture, rape and killing of any one member of our human family must be challenged, as in the case of the Rohingya genocide,” said Mairead Maguire. “Silence is complicity.”

(article continued in right column)

Questions for this article

Do women have a special role to play in the peace movement?

(article continued from left column)

The Nobel peace laureates were impressed by the strength and resilience of the women who had survived such horrific crimes. One woman at the Thyankhali camp told them, “Why should we feel shame? We were tortured. We don’t need to feel shame about that.”

Another woman at Camp Kutupalong said, “We are not afraid of anything. We want our stories to be told.”

The Laureates are calling for the perpetrators of these heinous crimes to be brought to justice before the International Criminal Court.

“With over a million Rohingya displaced, countless dead or missing, and rape and sexual violence being used as a weapon of war, it is well past the time for the international community to act,” said Shirin Ebadi.

The Laureates met with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, government officials, human rights organizations and humanitarian agencies. They extended their thanks to Prime Minister Hasina and to both the Government and the people of Bangladesh for their exemplary acts of compassion for the Rohingya refugees.

The Laureates also expressed deep appreciation to the Bangladeshi government and to the various humanitarian agencies that have met the extraordinary challenge of setting up the Refugee and Relocation Camps for over one million Rohingya refugees.

As a result of their visit to Bangladesh, the Nobel Laureates are calling for:

* An immediate end to the genocide against the Rohingya in Rakhine, and an order to the Myanmar military to immediately stop all acts of sexual violence.

* Justice for Rohingya victims: perpetrators of crimes must be brought to justice through the International Criminal Court (ICC).

* Bangladesh, as the only country in South Asia to have ratified the Rome Statute, should, along with other states parties, the UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council, refer the case to the ICC.

* Alternatively, the ICC Prosecutor should open an independent investigation into crimes against humanity and genocide perpetrated in Rakhine State.

* A voluntary, safe and dignified return. There should be no forced repatriation. When Rohingya do return to Rakhine State, they should be offered security and be granted full citizenship.

* The government of Myanmar to take immediate action to address the systematic discrimination of the Rohingya in Rakhine State, and ensure the Rohyinga’s right to nationality, land ownership, freedom of movement and other fundamental rights.

* A comprehensive arms embargo on Myanmar to ensure that there are no sales of weapons or other military equipment.

* The international community to increase its support to Bangladesh’s humanitarian response.

* Bangladesh to ratify the 1951 Geneva Refugee Convention, as a major step to give protection to refugees and set an example in South Asia.

For more information, please contact:
Ketty Nivyabandi, Media Associate: knivyabandi@nobelwomensinitiative.org + 1 613 691 1419
Katia Gianneschi, Media Outreach: Katia.Gianneschi@gmail.com +1 613 614 9740

(Thank you to Janet Hudgins, the CPNN reporter for this article.)

India: ’Life: A Mystical Journey’- A Gathering of 500 Women Leaders To Explore Spirituality as Tool For Peace And Empowerment

. . WOMEN’S EQUALITY . .

An article from India Education Diary

Over 500 accomplished women achievers, artists, policymakers, sportswomen among others will participate in the 8th International Women’s Conference (IWC). Titled, ‘Life: A Mystical Journey,’ the conference will be held at The Art of Living International Center, Bengaluru between February 23 and 25.


IWC has unique twin goals- individual development and collective action. It facilitates partnership-building and leadership development among women leaders globally.

Some of the speakers for this year’s conference include Arundhati Bhattacharya, former chairman, State Bank of India; Chetna Gala Sinha, Founder-Chairperson Mann Deshi Bank and Mann Deshi Foundation, Rani Mukherji , Indian Actress,  Vandana Shiva, environmentalist, and ecologist; Madhoo Shah, actress, MridulaSinha, Governor, Goa,  Adriana Marais, theoretical physicist, head of innovation at SAP Africa; Professor MaithreeWickramasinghe, founder director of Center for Gender Studies at the University of Kelaniya.

“Women are leading peacemakers. They work together towards creating a stress-free, violence-free society. The conference is a message in peace and unity,” shares BhanumathiNarasimhan, Chairperson, IWC.

(article continued in right column)

Questions for this article

Do women have a special role to play in the peace movement?

(article continued from left column)

Increasing number of women are leading from the front in multiple fields. The IWC builds on this trend. It works with women leaders to enhance their impact and gives an impetus to the global advancement of women from all backgrounds.

The 2018 conference will explore ways to amplify the message of peace and empowerment, including spiritual tools.

“The role of women in the development of a society is of utmost importance. It is the only criterion that determines whether a society is strong and harmonious,” says Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Founder, The Art of Living, which is one of the conference partners.

Since its inception in 2005, the conference has focused on diversity and inclusiveness. Over 375 eminent speakers and 5500 delegates from over 100 countries have participated in the conference. The IWC focuses on advancing the status of women in fragile and post-conflict states. It also worked with the World Bank Institute to develop empowerment schemes for women in vulnerable nations and expanded vocational training for widows in Iraq.

The IWC also supports The Art of Living’s Gift A Smile project. Over 58,000 students study in 435 free schools across 20 Indian states. Encouragingly, girl children comprise 48% while 90% are first-generation learners. Promoting girl child education is the underlined focus area for IWC.

This year the focus will also be to create open defecation free districts in India. In phase 1, the organization will work towards sensitization and awareness about use of toilets and increasing health and hygiene in these areas. In Phase II, 4000 toilets will be built.

IWC in the past has been associated with pivotal social initiatives like constructing homes for the under privileged, creating awareness about environment and environmental care, movement to stop violence against women, and child and women empowerment through skills training.