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International Day of Peace – 21 September 2023

Each year the International Day of Peace (IDP) is observed around the world on 21 September. This year’s theme is Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals. It is a call to action that recognizes our individual and collective responsibility to foster peace.

Achieving peace worldwide is a complex and challenging endeavour that requires the concerted efforts of individuals, communities, governments, and international organizations. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution, there are several key principles and strategies that can contribute to the pursuit of global peace:

Promote Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution – Encourage countries to engage in peaceful negotiations and diplomacy to resolve disputes rather than resorting to violence

Address Root Causes of Conflict– Identify and address the underlying causes of conflict, such as poverty, inequality, injustice, and lack of access to resources.

Promote Human Rights and Rule of Law– Advocate for the protection of human rights and the rule of law both domestically and internationally.

Education and Awareness– Encourage dialogue and understanding among different cultural, religious, and ethnic groups.

Promote Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment– Ensure that women are actively involved in decision-making processes related to peace and security.

Environmental Sustainability– Recognise the link between environmental degradation, resource scarcity, and conflict.

Achieving global peace is a long-term and ongoing effort that requires the commitment of all. While it may seem like a daunting task, every action, no matter how small, can contribute to building a more peaceful world.

Soroptimist International is a global volunteer organization that focuses on improving the lives of women and girls in local communities and around the world. Their primary focus is on gender equality and the well-being of women and girls. Their work indirectly contributes to the broader goal of achieving peace. By addressing issues related to discrimination, violence, and economic inequality, they create more inclusive and just societies where peace can thrive. Their dedication to empowering women and girls is a crucial step in building a more peaceful and equitable world.

Blog by Debra Joseph Si Barbados

A personal reflection

Ah! The International Day of Peace is the day that my club SI South Kolkata was born or ‘chartered’ as they say. But why was World Peace Day chosen for this auspicious ceremony by the then SIGBI President Ann Dawson and others?

The answer my friend is blowing in the wind,” as Bob Dylan would have said. We realise more and more strongly every day how important peace is to the lives of all living beings and to mother earth as well. As APD Prosperity I realise the importance of peace. History has taught us that it was only during times of peace that countries and civilisations flourished and prospered. No other day could have been better suited to charter a Soroptimist chapter than the day of peace, the day celebrated for making peace an active choice the world over.

On one of the initial charter day celebrations, a group of SI South Kolkata project children had sung “Make me a channel of your peace….,” the peace prayer, having been trained and mentored by an SISK member. It was an especially moving moment to hear the children sing about what we as Soroptimists are trying to do all the time.

Peace has so many aspects; it is not just the absence of war. It is love and harmony in the home; equal opportunities at school, college, and career; no discrimination based on gender, race, faith, language, colour or culture; and above all else, balance and inclusion with all the biodiversity of humans, animals, birds and plants—not necessarily in that order, though.

John Lennon’s iconic “Imagine” comes to mind…

Nothing to kill or die for

Imagine all the people
Livin’ life in peace

How wonderful it would be if we Soroptimists can make the dream of this “dreamer” a reality! A very tall ask, indeed!

 Blog by Shukla Chattopadhyay, SI South Kolkata