|Posted: May 05 2005,12:33
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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?
the perspective of those working within Unipaz, the report on a
progress in creating a culture of peace is broadly negative. We see two
movements occurring at the same time: one, on a large scale, where the
conventional social structure is less and less able to produce peace or
stop violence and one, on a much smaller scale, where a real and
profound progress has been made, e.g. in certain schools, certain
organisations, certain communities and certain cities to articulate a
culture of peace. On the latter, the greatest progress is being made
where the responsibility for acting as agents of peace is placed on a
group of people or community and not just on an individual.
said that, the least progress globally seems to have been made at the
political level, where the need for a holistic approach to creating a
culture of peace is often not understood or misunderstood, and not
linked to inner transformation. This can be summed up as: “We are
advancing in words but taking a step backwards in deeds”.
However, there are some specific examples of progress worth mentioning:
In the UK, for example, there is an active development of network of
organisations and individuals working toward a culture of peace and
holistic peace education is starting to be recognised as a valid
contribution to help communities and schools. Concretely this has led
to the creation of a development group for a Ministry of Peace within
the UK government. At the regional level, a Member of the Scottish
Parliament is chairing a group in support of peace education as a part
of Scottish curriculum in schools. Within Unipaz UK in
particular, the results of individual school programmes on peace
education show a marked shift towards a culture of peace in the
classroom and in the lives of individual students in a number of areas,
personal, social and academic.
• In the state of Parana in
Brazil, the Municipal Ministry of Education of Curitiba has granted
scholarships to 30 people who have previously followed a holistic peace
education programme, to spread peace principles within the public
• In the State of Sao Paulo, the city of
Altinopolis put in place a comprehensive municipal programme based on
the principle of the Manifesto 2000 of the UN and touching upon the
health, education and social welfare programmes, amongst others. As a
result, the violence in the city, including domestic violence, has been
reduced by 95%, and the quality of life of a majority of the
inhabitants and families has been improved significantly at the
personal, social and environmental level.
• Unipaz-France has
seen a doubling of demand for taking part in holistic peace education
workshops from people who are concerned and searching to increase their
capacity to act to improve the situation of the planet.
• In Brasilia, 340 military policemen have had peace education training with excellent results.
general, the move towards the creation of a culture of peace is very
difficult to measure in quantitative terms and to this date not many
specific indicators have been used by Unipaz to evaluate progress. One
method of measuring has been the increase of public and/or private
involvement in developing the human resources necessary for promoting a
culture or peace and non-violence.
There is a need to develop
a comprehensive set of indicators, however, and Unipaz will work in the
next 5 years to develop and use specific indicators, which it will
share with UNESCO.
OBSTACLES: What are the most important obstacles that have prevented progress?
the most basic level, as long as there is no progress in addressing
social injustice and social exclusion, from the perspective of
education, the economy, technology, race and gender, and basic needs
for food, health and education are not met, there is no foundation for
establishing a culture of peace.
Beyond that, one of the
greatest obstacles to the creation of a culture of peace, and political
support thereof, is the fact that the concept of peace is globally
still associated with the absence of military conflict or a state of
non-violence and not viewed as a continuous and dynamic process which
incorporates the individual, society and the environment. This is
reflected in the media and augmented by the prevailing approach to
education, which is fragmented and achievement-oriented, and not one
encouraging a transdisciplinary vision and an inner transformation for
peace and non-violence.
Furthermore, today, mobilising
sufficient resources, including funding for full-time salaried workers
for peace education and a legal basis therefore in school curriculae,
is one of the greatest obstacles to making concrete, effective and
sustainable progress in creating a mainstream culture of peace. One of
the reasons is that creating a dynamics of peace is long-term and
quantifiable results are not always visible in the short to
medium-term, often a criteria for obtaining funding from private or
public sources. Peace education should get the same support as
education in mathematics, languages, history and geography in the
national school curriculae.
ACTIONS: What actions have been
undertaken by your organization to promote a culture of peace and
nonviolence during the first half of the Decade?
since 2001, the Unipaz network has trained over 15000 people in basic
peace education in Latin America, North America, Europe and Africa,
including primary and secondary school teachers and students,
policemen, health professionals, journalists, government employees,
elected officials, prison inmates and staff, youth and children.
This has taken place through several core actions:
• Provided ongoing peace education programmes such as:
at the introductory level, the “Art of Living in Peace” two-day
workshop in local communities and organisations and public lectures;
the “Art of Living Life”, a series of 8 workshops looking at a more
in-depth level at the dynamics of peace that can be created at the
individual, social and environmental level;
• the two-year
post-graduate academic programme in holistic peace education, with
interdisciplinary methods, and on some campuses in cooperation with
certified university programmes;
• 6-week and permanent peace education programmes within and/or for primary and secondary students, and;
• facilitators training for new peace educators
• Created new workshops in the areas of leadership training, trans-religious dialogue, inter-cultural respect
UNIPAZ is associated to several peace education programmes, such as the
“network of people who make peace” in Sao Paulo, which targets to train
2000 persons per year.
UNIPAZ has co-produced and participated in several events such as:
• The annual International Holistic and Transdisciplinarity Congress since 1987
• The Fair on Peace Initiatives in Paris in 2004
• The Congress on Science and Conscience in Strasbourg in 2003
Unipaz has published the following books and journals:
• “The Art of Living in Peace” with UNESCO in English and French (also existing in Portuguese and Spanish (2002)
• “The Art of Living Life» in Portuguese and French (2004)
• META, an inter-disciplinary publication in Portuguese on actions for creating a culture of peace
• Peace, reality: a bilingual newsletter (French/Portuguese) on UNIPAZ activities and partnerships in Europe
Unipaz has participated in or created TV or radio programmes, such as:
“Ethics and Sustainability” in association with the NGO Uniao
Planetaria, transmitted in prime time to 26 Brazilian cities, with a
focus on the process of peace in actions related to education,
the environment, agriculture, politics and public policy, architecture,
city planning etc.
• a one minute radio programme in Brasilia, the
“Water Minute” educating the general public on how to preserve water
resources and the environment as a whole.
• “Altinopolis” as a city of peace on French National Radio on the programme “Interception” (France Inter, September 2004)
celebrate the International Day of Peace, several Unipaz units,
including in Fortaleze, Goiana, Recife, Florianopolis, Londrina, Porto
Alegre and Lisbon, have created one-day or one-week public street
festivals or open-air events, including public lectures, debates,
walks, movies and art, open to the local community to discuss and
celebrate elements of a culture of peace. Tens of thousands of people
have participated in these events.
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?
To create a permanent and well-resourced organisational branch of the
UN (like or within UNESCO) responsible for peace education/ creating a
culture of peace. Such a branch could:
o Support countries to
understand and establish peace education programmes in their national
school curriculae on the basis of UN resolution 53/25 which invited all
world governments to include peace education within their formal
o Support the training of peace educators throughout the world, including via long-distance learning.
o Fund and accredit peace educators in the field.
Research work that is already going on to provide evidence of the tools
and approach that can be used and the results that can be achieved in
establishing a culture of peace, and disseminate this widely.
encourage partnerships between organisations working on a holistic
approach to the establishment of a culture of peace, through grants for
The objective should be to train all human beings living on the planet in the principles of a culture of peace.
To raise awareness of nation-states that they are still working from
the perspective of a culture of war, and support a transformation to a
culture of peace by first and foremost, calling upon and offering basic
training on the creation of a culture of peace to all national
political leaders, UN political delegations and UN civil servants. The
global objective should be to change the general focus of the UN and
its bodies from how to stop war to how to create a sustainable dynamics
• Concretely, the Secretary General is invited:
to organise a two-day training session for all Heads of State, and to
all delegates of the General Assembly, to make a concrete step to put
theory and words into practice;
* to produce a weekly TV or radio
programme on the initiatives and actions for a peace culture taking
place across the planet, inviting every week one citizen of the planet
to give her/his testimony for peace on the planet;
* to create a
special recognition for “citizens of peace”, citizens actively to
promote in their life the principles of peace culture. The objective is
to give the possibility for all citizens of the planet to take this
commitment in the next 10 years
* to promote a world wide programme for making all wars illegal and to make the concept of a “legal” or “just” war obsolete.
PARTNERSHIPS: What partnerships and
networks does your organization participate in, thus strengthening the
global movement for a culture of peace?
Universities in Brazil and Portugal where the transdisciplinary
training of UNIPAZ is a recognised as post-graduate academic programme
by 4 different universities, including the Escola Superior de
Tecnologias & Arte de Lisboa, the Faculdade Sao Judas Tadeu in Rio
• In Portugal, a partnership with the National Syndicat of Professers
Partnership in a programme called “Rede Gente que Faz a Paz” which
includes UNESCO, Viva Rio, Palas Athena, Uniao Planetaria and other
institutions and networks in the states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro
and the Federal District of Brasilia
• “Cuidar do Ser”, a specialisation training of therapists in cooperation with the Universidade do Extremo-sul (Criciuma)
In Porto Alegre, a partnership with CESBLU (Centro de Ensino Superior
de Blumenau) in 3 projects: a specialisation course on Basic Holistic
Peace Education training, a specialisatoion course “Cuidar do Ser” for
therapists, a specialisation course “Advanced Studies in Trans-personal
• In Belo Horizonte, partnerships with the NGO’s
Instituto Renascer Da Consciencia and the Centro de Ecologia Integral
for the organisation and dissemination of all projects, courses
and training programmes
• In Rio de Janeiro, a partnership with the
Faculdade Sao Judas Tadeu to introduce the transdisciplinary approach
in education and recognition of the Ministry of Education of the Basic
Holistic Peace Education training as an extension of post-graduate
programmes, and a partnership with the NGO Viva Rio in the social area
of education in peace and non-violence
• In Sao Paulo, partnerships
with the Centro de Ensino Superior de Blumenaul, Petrobras and with the
state governmental organisation, FEBEM, to work with youth in
situations of risk
• Involvement in Rededapaz (Brazil)
• Involvement in UNESCO network of a culture of peace
UN University of Peace, Costa Rica (offering “The Art of Living in
Peace” workshop to students and teachers in the 2004-5 academic year)
• World Peace Prayer Society
• UK Peace Foundation Network
• UK Ministry of Peace movement
• Scottish Parliament ad hoc peace education group
• Terre et Ciel (France)
• College of Therapists
• Citoyens de paix (Belgium)
• Fondacion Martinez-Bouquet and Aluminé Universidad del Hombre (Argentina)
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)?
Globally, new objectives for 2006-10 for UNIPAZ include:
• To extend peace education development work in schools and education establishments.
• To expand awareness-raising of holistic education at political levels.
• To connect with the business community to develop awareness of holistic principles.
To establish more partnerships with universities and institutions, and
other NGO’s active in creating a culture of peace, including making
links with people and organisations active in sustainable development
and participatory democracy.
Concretely, the new engagements that are planned:
The World Festival of Peace, from 1-10 September 2006 in Florianopolis,
Brazil, an international event to celebrate and promote a culture of
peace including several international personalities who have made
significant contributions to the creation of a peace culture.
• To establish an annual summer university on peace education in Europe.
To create new UNIPAZ units focusing on actions in and for the United
States, Spain, Honduras, Australia, Germany, China, Mozambique.
• To create an internationally recognised post-graduate programme in transdisciplinary peace education.
Postal address of organization
co Yves Mathieu
23/2 place Saint Géry
E-mail address of organization
Website address of organization
Highest priority action domain of a culture of peace
Education for a culture of peace
Second priority action domain of a culture of peace
Free flow of information
Highest priority country of action (or international)
Second priority country of action (or international)
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