News — January 15, 2016
JCI Launches Peace is Possible Campaign
JCI officially launched Peace is Possible, a global peace initiative, by holding a Peace Forum during the 2016 January Board Meeting. The campaign will work to mobilize young people worldwide to create awareness, advocate, take action and commit to an everlasting world peace.
In a world filled with violence, terrorism and injustice, the idea of peace to many has become merely just a vision as these unsettling acts continue to affect innocent people in communities around the globe. For an organization founded on the vision of the establishment of a permanent and everlasting world peace, violence serves as a reminder of how relevant and necessary JCI and other like-minded organizations are in today’s society.
For that reason, in 2016 JCI will seek to start a conversation that will foster an environment where shared collaboration and open dialogue can occur between all sectors of society, making peace more than just a vision but a possibility.
During the Peace Forum held in St. Louis, USA four leaders from different peace and diversity organizations from the community discussed the barriers and solutions to the greatest challenges we face on our mission to achieve an everlasting world peace.
JCI Secretary General Arrey Obenson moderated the discussion, digging deeper into how we as not only individuals but also communities can make peace possible.
“Don’t keep your values at home, share them with your community,” said Faizan Syed, Executive Director of the St. Louis Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
Syed strongly focused on the idea that individuals can’t change the world overnight but are able to by creating conversation; this conversation will be transferred to others and eventually those voices will become a global movement for change.
But another untapped and often forgotten sector of society that can help to mobilize peace is the business sector.
“If we create jobs, we provide solutions for peace,” said Ana Romero-Lizana, Director of International Business Development for the World Trade Center Saint Louis.
Romero-Lizana talked to the audience about a variety of topics surrounding small and medium-sized businesses and how they play a role in the creation of peace. She emphasized how creating positions in businesses opens a door of opportunity, lifting individuals out of poverty and restoring their sense of human dignity. By restoring human dignity in individuals all around the world we will begin to see it preserved for future generations to come.
Another individual working to reduce poverty in order to create peace around the world is Theresa Carrington, Founder and CEO of The Blessing Basket Project.
“Peace begins with human connections,” said Carrington.
Carrington spoke to the audience about her organization and how her approach to peace is not through charity but by creating entrepreneurship opportunities for those living in poverty. The artisan entrepreneurs are then connected to the people around the world purchasing their products, creating peaceful dialogue.
One other crucial topic of the forum discussion was the idea of more diverse and sustainable communities and how they are crucial to making peace possible.
“We must be an inclusive society in order to establish peace,” said Justin Raymundo, Director of Programs and Communications for the Diversity Awareness Partnership.
Raymundo believes that peace is created by increasing awareness, facilitating engagement and providing education about diversity and inclusion.
Whether it is starting a new local project in your community, sharing JCI’s history and vision of peace or encouraging like-minded organizations to join the movement, we must encourage young people to start the conversation and advocate for peace in their communities today.
We as individuals need to begin respecting the differences that reside within our diverse global community, transcending the sovereignty of nations. But most importantly, we need to stop waiting for peace to happen and Just Act!
Make your commitment to peace today by taking the online commitment at www.peaceispossible.cc. Share your commitment with your online network by adopting the campaign on social media by visiting http://twibbon.com/support/peace-is-possible.