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Organization: Committee on A Curriculum of Hope for A Peaceful World/standing committee of CT/The Delta Kappa Gamm
The following information may be cited or quoted as long as the source is accurately mentioned and the words are not taken out of context.
Posted: April 26 2005,23:17 If you wrote this report, you will find a button here that you may click
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PROGRESS: Has your organization seen progress toward a culture of peace and nonviolence in your domain of action and in your constituency during the first half of the Decade?

As a small grassroots peace education committee that has been in existence since 1985, we have seen a recent solidarity develop between and among other like-minded peace groups. Our Newsletter has expanded in size and content to disseminate information about available resources to teach peace education. Our mailing list has grown from 500 in 2000 to over 850 in 2005 with many who receive it replicating it and passing it on to other schools. However, there is also a strong culture of violence that permeates all aspects of children's lives. A culture of fear has made them more insulated and isolated since 9/11/2001. Families of military personnel who are in Iraq live with constant tension and stress. We strive to keep everyone on a positive even keel and people seem to need to hear encouragement and emphasis on hope.  We have adjusted to that need.

OBSTACLES: What are the most important obstacles that have prevented progress?

For adults, the worldwide news media constantly reporting all that is negative and sensational. The lack of a free flow or reliable information from government and corporate controlled media. For children the entertainment media is the primary obstacle to a culture of peace .MTV channels, Hollywood films, video games and cartoons all promote violent behaviors, violent language, disrespect for human rights and lack of regard for human lives. They promote guns, fighting, abuse and murder. The message for children is: This is your life,get used to it and participate or die! A culture of peace can never co-exist with the current media presented culture of violence and fear. In the U.S. the federally mandated No Child Left Behind Act has effectively eliminated time for teaching peace studies and human rights education because of the emphasis on testing in reading, writing, math and science.

ACTIONS: What actions have been undertaken by your organization to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence during the first half of the Decade?

Our committee is made up of active and retired educators who work individually, each in her own venue, teaching peace education and spreading a commitment  for human rights. As a committee we use two methods to promote peace: the distribution of our Newsletter internationally and the sponsorship and development of events and projects in our local region which is northeast Connecticut comprised of 25 towns with 75 schools ranging from pre-kindergarten through high school. The annual events are a culmination of school collaborations and community participation. Our Curriculum of Hope for A Peaceful World Newsletter has been continuously published since 1986. It is primarily for educators and peace groups in 17 countries with the majority of readers in the United States. We present very basic and timely philosphy in a Founder's message in each issue.  The message is written to convince readers through encouragement, that in all circumstances, no matter how bleak, there is HOPE for peace if each person believes in that hope and ACTS accordingly. Each and every one of us is needed to be effective in reaching a peaceful world condition.  Peace begins in the heart and mind of individuals who strive to live a personal life that reflects inner peace.  They do so through acts of kindness, consideration, caring,tolerance, respect and understanding of basic human rights for all. Each person is encouraged to accept personal responsibility to act to help all mankind.  That consistent focus in all issues is then supported by the promulgation of resources to help readers teach all the aforementioned behavioral concepts. We present resources, materials, book and video reviews, ideas and opportunities that help educators teach conflict resolution, altruism, character development, human rights, cultural understanding, recognition of the importance of the United Nations programs, celebrations and its vital role on working for a peaceful world. Each year in the Fall issue we promote International Day of Peace in September, United Nations Day in October and Human Rights Day in December citing suggested activities and resources. All materials are accompanied by websites, cyberaddresses and  phone numbers so readers can access a wealth of information for teaching topics that lead to peace.
Our Newsletter was invited to be included in the Alternate Press Archives in the University of Connecticut Library.
Events and Projects 2001-2005 include annual projects for three months focused on peace in reading, writing, music and art with culminating activities in each school
Committee members have been Keynote speakers:Vermont State Convention in 2000. Topic: Promoting Peace in Your Classroom. In 2002, Massachusetts State Convention. Topic: Curriculum of Hope for A Peaceful World. In 2004 at the Church Women United World Community Day. Topic: How To Be A Peacemaker.
In 2002 we erected a Peace Pole in Heritage Sate Park, Willimantic, Ct with 12 languages representing the ethnic population of the area proclaiming May Peace Prevail On Earth. A PEACE QUILT was created by 20 schools who each provided a square of their own design. The quilt now hangs in the historic reclaimed Windham Mills lobby adjacent to Heritage State Park. A PEACE GARDEN was planted on the site of the Peace Pole by the Green Thumb Club of Southeast School, Mansfield, CT.
Members have presented teacher workshops as follows: 2001 in Boston. Topic: Personal Peace. In 2003 in Greenbrier, West Virginia. Topic: Advocating for Human Rights which was repeated in 2004 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
2003 started a PEACE RIBBON project across the state of Connecticut where 15 groups of women teachers each made a ribbon to the specifications of The Ribbon International Project of the Peace Coalition. Ribbons tied together have been displayed for one month periods in various schools which engaged in a month long focus on peace education and added a ribbon of their own. This project willcontinue through 2006.
Each September 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, we promote observance of the International Day of Peace. Several schools in our area participate in a noon silence followed by bell ringing, reading of original peace essays and poetry, music and artwork displays. Some schools have made email contact with foreign schools.
2004 we developed an extensive bibliography on Human Rights for participants in the United Nations CTAUN Educators Conference at the UN building in NY.
2005 we are guiding the School Ambassadors of the UNESCO Chair and Institute of Comparative Human Rights at the University of CT in developing and teaching lessons in local schools on human rights.
2005we are developing an Activity Binder of classroom units, lessons activities and bibliographies, grades pre-K-8 for piloting in 20 schools beginning September 2005.
Actions of our parent organization, The Delta Kappa Gamma Society Int'l:
1997-2001 provided $60,000 to educate girls in The Gambia, Africa
2001-2003 provided $13,700 funding for schools in Promaya area in Mexico
2004-2005 providing funding for teacher training in Afghanistan based on a curriculum developed by Teacher's College, Columbia University costing $24 per teacher. We have raised $102,000 so far!



Peace Quilt created with 20 schools each adding a square.  Schools are in northeast Connecticut, and quilt was presented to the historic Windham Mills complex at Heritage State Park, Willimantic, CT, June 2002.



Fourth graders at the International School at Dundee, Riverside, CT create a peace ribbon after a month-long unit on Peace.  March 2003.



Dedication ceremony for the Peace Pole installed at Heritage State Park in Willimantic, CT.  Community members read 'May peace prevail on earth' in their native ethnic languages as they joined hands in peace.  June 2002.

ADVICE: What advice would you like to give to the Secretary-General and the General Assembly to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence during the second half of the Decade?

Please recognize that peace begins with children and make peace education a priority in all nations. Expand UNICEF to help with that goal.
Use and expand your CTAUN,Committee Teaching About the United Nations. Have them develop a pre-K-12 peace curriculum compatible for use in member countries.

United Nations status and respect have diminished because of slow-moving,reactive not proactive stances taken in crisis situations. The United Nations allows perpetrators of horrific crimes against humanity bordering on genocide, AGAIN, to make repeated promises while still carrying on murder! There MUSt be INSTANT actions taken to pressure rogue governments to stop unacceptable behaviors by QUICKLY imposing sanctions and withholding funds. Not months later but days later. UN credibility is fading away. Rational people are disappointed and angry with political posturing while suffering and death prevail unabated for much too long. It is getting very difficult to defend the United Nations.

PARTNERSHIPS: What partnerships and networks does your organization participate in, thus strengthening the global movement for a culture of peace?

UNESCO Chair and Institute for Human Rights, University of Connecticut
Windham Area Interfaith Ministry
Eastern CT Sate University
Pax Educare
RightsWorks, New Jersey
Southern Poverty Law Center, Alabama
Heifer International, Arkansas
PeacexPeace, Virginia
World Peace Sanctuary, New York
Northeast Foundation for Children, Massachusetts
Growing Communities for Peace, Minnesota
Peace Education International, Florida
Save Our World, Vermont
Teaching and Learning for Peace, Australia
Center for First Amendment Rights
UNICEF, CTAUN of United Nations
Elementary schools in CT, MA, VT, IN, IL, PA, NJ, NY and Jalisco, Mexico

PLANS: What new engagements are planned by your organization to promote a culture of peace and nonviolence in the second half of the Decade (2005-2010)?

We will be continuing all projects and expanding on them. We are working diligently to increase circulation of our Newsletter, to seek out opportunities for new contacts and networking.
New ideas come up all the time and we will pursue them with zeal as long as we can breathe!

Postal address of organization

9 Old Willimantic Road
Columbia, CT 06237-1219  USA

E-mail address of organization

Jemora@aol.com

Website address of organization

www.deltakappagamma.org/CT/Curriculum of Hope

Highest priority action domain of a culture of peace

Education for a culture of peace

Second priority action domain of a culture of peace

Understanding, tolerance, solidarity

Highest priority country of action (or international)

International U.S., Great Britain,Sweden, Norway, Germany, Netherlands, Iceland, Canada, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Mexico,

Second priority country of action (or international)

Connecticut, U.S.
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Organization: Committee on A Curriculum of Hope for A Peaceful World/standing committee of CT/The Delta Kappa Gamm

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