IMAGINE Magazine Autumn 2015 Volume 1 Number 1 - Page 20

Need PHOTO FROM PEace by Piece A celebratory moment at the Peace by Piece Festival / Global Feast for Peace. day “Peace by Piece Festival.” A Peace Quilt was on display that day consisting of over 1,000, six-inch painted squares from local children and adult hands expressing their personal vision of peace. At 12:00 noon festival goers participated in a global moment of silence. During the last two years, we partnered with the Sedona International Film Festival, Unity Church, and the Sedona Public Library to host films and conversations addressing how to awaken ourselves to hidden issues in our community such as hunger, mental health, bullying, sex trafficking of minors, and deep cultural wounds experienced from war and trauma. Each film was followed by a community dialogue with speakers from relevant organizations and clear actions for engagement. Additionally City of Peace members led six of 22 conversations during Sedona World Peace Dance Celebration Week. Sedona City of Peace established Peace Maker Awards and 20 IMAGINE l Autumn 2015 honored: Barbara Litrell and Elaine Hansen of World Peace Dance Week; visionary philosopher and researcher in the field of human capacities Jean Houston; Father Michael Lapsley for his work healing cultural wounds; and Amy Aossey, Executive Director of Yavapai Food Council, to begin to identify and acknowledge the many and varied ways that individuals are fostering a culture of peace in our community. Lastly, Sedona City of Peace is actively engaging in shaping of public policy issues in areas that celebrate diversity and ensure the health and well-being of our community, such as same-sex civil unions, mental health awareness, and a comprehensive human rights ordinance with a restorative justice approach. l Get Started. We share our early experiences of establishing a City of Peace, not as a recipe for what to do in other cities, but as inspiration for what might be possible. The reality is, there are many paths to peace and the unfolding of each International City of Peace is likely as unique as the partners who gather to create it. All you really need is a few committed souls ready and willing to begin the conversation. It’s fun and heartwarming just how much support shows up once a framework has been created. And you instantly become part of a global movement of kindred spirits in cities committed to peace around the world. As John F. Kennedy said: “If not us, who? If not now, when?” In most cities and towns, one or two individuals hear about and become interested the International City of Peace Initiative. A small group is then formed and builds energy. In many cases the fledgling City of Peace group approaches civic leaders to form a partnership with local government in order to institutionalize a culture of peace through proclamations and support. There is no doubt that a groundswell of grassroots activities around the world is creating the conditions and infrastructures for peace—many created by International Cities of Peace. Even more are created by visionary citizens who see a way to co-create their local governments to achieve a better future. For more information on becoming an International City of Peace, please check out: internationalcitiesofpeace.org which has general information and stories about the experiences of each of the more than 100 cities. In addition, especially if you are in Arizona, please feel free to contact us at info@cityofpeacesedona.org.