What does peace mean to you?
Peace means different things to different people. Peace could be a state of being, a place, a sound or a person. It can be a mix of things that add up to peace. In fact, very brainy people agree that there is no singular definition of what peace means.
Our concept of peace
Peace for us is not just the absence of violence but the presence of many things that support peace as more than an ephemeral moment. At the heart of our work lies our vision of peace, which encompasses personal and inter personal peace, community and global peace.
We work with head, heart and hands to build knowledge, attitudes and skills for peace. We have seen the benefits of social and emotional learning for all, the effect on a school when it puts relationships at the centre, the impact of a peaceful experience on a child, the possible transformation for an adult in shifting from punitive to restorative practice and the growth in maturity and confidence that can come from acting as a peer mediator.
We align with the concept of positive peace: that is the presence of peaceful beliefs and behaviours, cultivating values such as inclusion, participation, justice, equity and equality – as well as the absence of violence and aggression.
Marshall Rosenberg, the founder of non-violent communication, describes violence as ‘resourcelessness’ – people resort to violence when they don’t have the capacity or skills to find another response to the circumstances that they find themselves in.
We believe that by educating for peace, learning for peace, exploring peace and creating peaceful environments we create experiences of peace for all participating.
What is peace education?
Peace education is the explicit teaching of the values, skills and knowledge required to help people operate more harmoniously with each other.
Educating for peace often takes place in schools. But peace education can happen anywhere there is a need to resource people to have different, more creative responses to conflict and difference within themselves, with others, within their community. Or where there is interest in exploring the rich subject of peace and what it can offer us and our communities.
Peacemakers educates for peace more than about peace in that we have a focus on developing the foundational skills needed for peace such as communication, inclusion, dialogue and conflict transformation.
We see education as a means of developing human potential, and healthy relationships as a foundation for learning.
How do we work?
We facilitate workshops for people of all ages and all backgrounds.
Our workshops are practical, experiential and fun - we love learning through doing.
All our work starts and ends in a circle. The circle helps people to get to know each other and have more meaningful dialogue. The circle also makes things fair: there is not a ‘leader’ so we have to take it in turns to listen to each other. The circle also helps us to work collaboratively. We don’t work in a circle for a long time. We often split in to groups or pairs to do activities.