gmhTODAY 23 gmhTODAY Dec Jan 2018 - Page 61

Even though the monument is still only a vision, she said they’ve already held some candelight vigils at that spot, such as after the disappearance of Morgan Hill resident Sierra LaMar, and after the mass shooting at the Parkland, Florida school Majory Stoneman Douglas last year. She would also like to invite people to take a peace pledge. “People would donate and commit to the pledge for peace that has to do with unity, nonviolent actions, sharing with others, listening to understand and helping your neighbors.” Despite its stated goals, she has found that, ironically, some people are uncertain about the word “peace.” “People are funny about that word. They feel like it has more to do with an ideology rather than being against violence.” She fears that this may keep some people from donating, and wishes to explain that it’s really about “inviting tolerance, friendship and nonviolence” particularly, she said, in this time of xenophobia. “We need to help people understand there’s an answer in nonviolence. We can dialogue and help our neighbors. This means so much more than a peace monument in the ground.” Librers-Leach, who works for Delta Airlines, says she has expanded her own understanding and acceptance of others by traveling, calling herself a “travelholic.” “When you experience other cultures, it makes you realize you have more in common than you do differences. That’s the beauty of it for me.” GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN Moreover, she finds that travel also allows her to go deeper into herself. “When you travel, no matter where you go, you see yourself differently. I’m not the same person when I come back from a trip.” She has several small fundraisers planned this year including a pie-selling fundraiser of Gizdich Pies in April, and what she hopes will be a “world fest” with different cultures' music and appetizers, at Morgan Hill Cellers in May. “I want Morgan Hill to stand for something. This project is bigger than you and me.” To donate: gofundme.com/mhmonument. Learn more at: mhpeaceproject.org PHOTO PROVIDED BY JANET LIBRERS-LEACH. december 2018-january 2019 gmhtoday.com 61