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International Day of Peace, September 21, 2009
Mark Murray plays Native American flute during early morning community gathering for prayer and meditation at the Monterey, MA town beach on International Day of Peace, September 21, 2009. The event was sponsored by the Center for Peace Through Culture. (Kathy Frome photo)

news & events

Whether they are cultural events, workshops, publications, conferences, or internet forums, aimed at an individual or a large group, our projects are designed to nurture a culture of peace.

CELEBRATING THE 2012 INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE

idp concert
The Guthrie Center rocked with a concert by 11 singers and songwriters!

Two successful CPC events marked the 2012 International Day of Peace.

At the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington, MA, the International Day of Peace Celebration took place on Saturday, September 22. Children of all ages had fun exploring peace through words, music and art in the afternoon. Over 70 concert-goers filled the space that evening for a free concert by eleven singers and songwriters.

Friday and Saturday, September 21-22, the first online Evolutionary Peace Summit attracted participants from across the United States and Canada.

Here are the recordings of some of the presenters:

EVOLUTIONARY PEACE LEADERSHIP PROGRAM

COMING SPRING, 2013! The new Evolutionary Peace Leadership Program is a series of online initiatives that will work on the global, community and individual levels. There will be online programs for beginning and active peace builders, as well as young people:

  • Evolutionary Peace Summit for active peace builders
  • Evolutionary Community Leadership Training Program
  • Evolutionary Peace Leadership Training Program for youth and budding peace builders

Details are under development. For more information, contact Ursula Velonis.

MONTEREY MEETS NGALLA/ PEOPLE TO PEOPLE PROJECT

day of the african child 2012
Celebrating the Day of the African Child 2012

CPC has established a Sister City relationship between a small town in the western mountains of Massachusetts and a small African city. Monterey, MA and Ngalla, Cameroon, are working together to strengthen human and financial resources to fight the spread of Malaria and HIV/AIDS.

ngalla children
Children from the Ngalla Primary School

The partnership helps people of both communities to share their history and experiences while promoting greater world prosperity and peace. Here's a report on the joyful opening event in Cameroon.

The celebrations for the 2012 Day of the African Child included the installation of latrines named in honor of two CPC board members, The Aunty Joan, named for Prof. Emeritus Joan MacVicar, Founding Member of Monterey Meets Ngalla Project, and the Aunty Laraine, named for Laraine Lippe, Vice Chairman of AAA Board of Directors. There were also cleaning and plantings and lots of music!

scholarship recipient
Aïssatou with her school uniform and lamp that will allow her to study at night.

This year, the recipient of the CPC-supported Schlarship is Aïssatou Issa, 19 years old.

Aïssatou is a Muslim young woman coming from Northern part of Cameroon. She is in the last year of High School and is preparing for her Baccalaureat Technique. Aissatou would like to enter Nursing school next year. She lost her bread winner, her dad, and lives with her mother who makes a very meager living as a petty trader in front of her home in Yaounde. Aïssatou's sister also benefits from a scholarship provided by the African Action on AIDS (AAA).

Aïssatou is a very happy and open young woman. She likes helping others and has been involved in our work with orphans during school vacations. She works very hard at school and is on the honor roll. She loves English, but her international working language is French.

She is a big hope for our common future: beautiful, open, intelligent, hard working, happy to learn new things, but still attached to her culture.

quilt panel
A drawing from the quilt

Vision of a World Without AIDS Quilt

The quilt, completed in the summer of 2008, includes images painted by AIDS orphans during an African Action on AIDS workshop where the children were encouraged to envision a world without AIDS. Dr. Ruth Engo, founder and president of African Action on AIDS, returned to Monterey, MA in the fall of 2008 and took most of the panels back with her to Cameroon. Several stayed in the United States to tour and eventually become a permanent exhibit. Here is an article (pdf format) on the celebration of the completion of the quilt.


PEACE CONFERENCE AND FESTIVAL

Hancock Shaker Village
Hancock Shaker Village

Pathways to Peaceful Living: Tools and Explorations, co-sponsored with Hancock Shaker Village, took place September 17, 2011 at Hancock Shaker Village, Pittsfield, Ma.

The goal of the Conference & Festival was to raise awareness and consciousness about diverse peaceful practices, from the past and the present, that inspire people to live more peaceful lives.

Hancock Shaker Village is a national historic landmark which was named "The City of Peace" by the Shakers. The values of the Shaker Community and those of the Center for Peace through Culture were woven together to create an educational journey of peace awareness for children and adults alike.

Activities included a keynote address by Congressman Dennis Kucinich, (now online) and interactive workshops. A concert featuring Paul Winter that evening closed the day.

Dialogues/Tool Box

What would happen if we brought artists, scientists and philosophers together to tackle an issue, if people with very different approaches brought their special insights to bear? The CPC Toolbox uses a creative set of tools to do just that. Our first project is working with the Hancock Shaker Village, a National Historic Landmark which was named "The City of Peace" by the Shakers, to plan a Peace Conference for the summer of 2011. The values of the Shaker Community and those of the CPC will be woven together to create an educational journey of peace awareness for children and adults alike.

The following people bring their talents to the CPC Toolbox:

  • Joan Ackerman: author, playwright, founder of Mixed Company; the first Theater in Great Barrington, screenplay for the Indie film "Off The Map."
  • Judy Bach, PhD: Psychosynthesis practitioner, trainer, author, workshop designer and presenter
  • Barbara Boughton: Executive Director of the CPC, workshop creator, interior designer, "Creating Home from the Inside Out," group facilitator and creator of "Dance-a-tonic." How can dance decrease violence and aggression?
  • David Crowe: Composer, conductor, interactive sound workshops with youth, arts educator
  • Kathleen Frome: Taught deaf children in the public school systems for ten years and is currently a licensed Social Worker, working with people with developmental disabilities
  • Ani Nadler Grosser, LICSW: relationship therapist, yoga teacher, presenter of "Communologue", a dialogue tool that promotes deep listening and understanding
  • Deb Koffman: Artist, graphic designer, interior designer, presenter of "In Words Out Words" and "Drawing As Mindfulness Practice" in her Housatonic Gallery
  • Dr. Susan Lord: personalized medicine using mind-body approaches, nutritional medicine, psychotherapy and lifestyle counseling.
  • Mary Beth Merritt: Four Winds, "Dialogue Practitioner", Whole child educator
  • Steven Small: Educator, reading specialist, children's advocate and educational consultant
  • JoAnne Spies: Songwriter, composer, performer and teaching artist leads interactive workshops and performances

For more information, email info@centerforpeacethroughculture.org .

Greenagers

Greenagers mobilizes and empowers young people to come together and work cooperatively to design and carry out environmental projects in their own their local communities.

Greenagers in the field
Greenagers hard at work in the fields.

Through this program, young people can not only make a real difference, they can also learn independence, creativity, leadership, responsibility and self-respect. As they develop their own interests and abilities, they are also promoting community and global health, and ultimately contributing to global peace.

Over the past year, the Greenagers have continued to improve the Great Barrington community, involving over 50 local youth and contributing over 2000 hours of labor. Youth working in Greenager's programs hauled logs with a team of oxen, built and maintained miles of trails, pulled invasives and farm weeds, harvested vegetables at local CSA farms, installed 10 front lawn gardens, and shoveled 120 tons of stonedust for a newly resurfaced Housatonic River Walk. These projects teach trade skills, people skills, show-up-to-work-on-time skills, and community relations skills.

At an end-of-the-year barbeque, several parents of the hired teens expressed deep gratitude for Will Conklin, Greenagers Director, as a wonderful director and mentor with assistance from Samantha Halley, and the parents felt that their children were able to have a positive focus for the summer that will assist them in their future.

More on Greenagers

Workshops

CPC can work with you and your group, community or school on with a variety of workshops. These include:

  • Believe it or Not: A Workshop on Beliefs that Separate People
  • Deep Listening
  • How to Play Nice Together: Building Community Locally and Globally
  • Personal Peace
  • Balancing the Inner Masculine and Feminine

For more information, email info@centerforpeacethroughculture.org .

How to Play Nice Together

How to Play Nice Together: Creating Community Locally and Globally is a story of seven people who are brought together to design a community. Not only are they strangers to each other, but they have absolutely nothing in common. They must learn to adjust to their diversity, to work out their interpersonal dynamics and to appreciate the collective power of their individual gifts.

The book focuses on the value in diversity. When people come together in any setting, be it in a workplace, an intentional community or an already existing community, they can purposely enrich their lives through conscious design. Includes a workbook on community design.

Order book

Create Your Future Now, 7 Keys To A Masterful Life

create your future

Maximillien de Lafayette wrote about Create Your Future Now, 7 Keys To A Masterful Life: "This extraordinary book will teach you how to live your life to the full, bringing together spiritual values and common sense. In a deceptively simple format of using seven keys to mastering life (with one very special eighth key as a bonus), every doubt and pain that is the fate of humanity to bear is addressed in a compassionate, loving, and highly intelligent manner. The author received much of the knowledge incorporated in this book from higher energies—but it also passes through her own highly accepting, understanding, and loving personality. Not to be missed by anyone who wishes to add beauty and wisdom to his or her life."

Order book

Online Workshops

There are currently two online workshops. One invites visitors to explore how their own beliefs affect their behavior - sometimes in unexpected ways. The other leads visitors through eight steps to become Peace Builders from the inside out.

More on online workshops

Cooperative Efforts

CPC joins forces with like-minded groups, individuals and communities who build peace. Examples include Pangea Day, a global film event harnessing the power of film to inspire and compel social change, and The International Day of Peace, a day of strengthening the ideals of peace and alleviating tensions and causes of conflict. CPC sponsors local events in support of these global initiatives.


Nicholas Roerich, by Svetoslav Roerich

Cultural Events

CPC sponsored a free concert featuring the New York City debut of Dreams of Wisdom, a chamber piece by David Crowe, which was inspired by 5 paintings by Nicholas Roerich. The piece was performed May 17, 2008 at the Nicholas Roerich Museum, where the paintings are on display. Also on the program was Olivier Messiaen's "Quartet for the End of Time."

Here are excerpts from Dreams of Wisdom.

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