Making Peace

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Equipping Youth for Peacemaking

August 22, 2016

DSC_1145Half of the youth you see below come from Eastern Ukraine and live as refugees out of the conflict zone. Some were part of a ten day rest on the shore of the Black Sea. 2016 was the second year This Child Here sponsored camp “White Sail.”

They came with their families to  swim, to play, to dance, to make crafts or make friends or photos or puppets to put on a play. There was time for programs we designed and programs they designed themselves. The camp has a specific purpose: to give time for these families to talk with each other, to separate themselves from painful memories and make new ones. In the right conditions, the sea serves as a place of healing.

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DSC_0956The others to the left and below were part of a 5 day training in peacemaking and conflict management in the city of Kiev. There were about 60 who participated in this event.  Aside from being sculpted into poses to represent stages of conflict and resolution. They took part in conversations about the experience of conflict in their lives and as a result of the current war in Ukraine.

 

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Equipping Ukrainians Seeking Peace

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In May 2014, This Child Here began a new initiative: Peacemaking.

Peacemaking is work both deep and wide, global and personal, between nations and within the human heart.  Our work ranges from care for individuals who suffered emotional trauma in the recent violence in Ukraine, to opportunities for reconciliation between those who oppose each other. But it will almost always be work with and between persons.  The training our staff has received is Quaker based and developed from methodology of Alternatives to Violence.  We began in Odessa but have goals also set for eastern Ukraine.

The images below are of our first planning meeting in response to the violence in Odessa, early in May 2014.

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