Corrymeela – going to Coventry again
The new volunteer accommodation at Corrymeela Ballycastle is being officially opened by President Mary McAleese on 3rd April. The original volunteer house was built in 1976 when the main funder was Coventry Cathedral’s Cross of Nails Network; to honour this connection the new building retains the name Coventry House and is suitable for a diverse, all-age volunteer team. In other news from the Ballycastle Centre, the refurbished Croi on the Ballycastle site will be rededicated on Saturday 25th April. The Director of the Ballycastle Centre, Ronnie Millar, will be returning to the USA in the summer after four years service. The post will be advertised after Easter. To become a ‘Friend of Corrymeela’ and receive the Corrymeela magazine, send your name and address to the Belfast office with your subscription, £26 waged, £13 unwaged (€33 / €16, US$50 / $25). Corrymeela (Belfast), 8 Upper Crescent, Belfast BT7 1NT, ph 028 – 90508080, e-mail email@example.com, web http://www.corrymeela.org
Community Relations Week 2009
This month sees the start of Community Relations Week in Northern Ireland, the annual showcase of community relations events and activities. The programme begins on 27th April and features events of a community relations nature, co-ordinated by the Community Relations Council and planned by individual organisations, mostly voluntary and community groups but also District councils and other public bodies. The aim of the Week has been to highlight the range and variety of community relations work that takes place and to raise public awareness and media interest. This year over 130 events have been organised. Many of these events are open to the public (check with event organiser). Details are on the CRC website http://www.nicrc.org.uk and a printed programme is available on request, ph 028 - 90-227500.
Meath Peace Group; Dealing, Healing, Empowering
Meath Peace Group spring seminar will take place on Saturday 25th April in St Columban's College, Dalgan Park, Navan, Co. Meath from 10am to 5pm. Sessions on 'Dealing with the Past and Healing on these islands', 'Healing, Reconciliation and Peacebuilding in practice' and 'Empowering young people'. Booking essential. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Julitta Clancy at 01 - 8259438.
Cluster Bomb Ban signed in Oslo
The Convention on Cluster Munitions, a new international treaty banning cluster bombs, was signed by 94 countries at a historic Signing Conference in Oslo on 3-4 December 2008. The new treaty bans the use, production, stockpiling and transfer of cluster munitions and places obligations on countries to clear affected areas, assist victims and destroy stockpiles. The Signing Conference was one of the most important international events of 2008, a historic moment to remember forever. Signatories of the treaty include dozens of users, producers and stockpilers and affected states including Afghanistan, Lao PDR, and Lebanon. With 18 of the 26 NATO countries signing the treaty, future use by the US will be severely hampered. Ireland, Sierra Leone, Norway and the Holy See also ratified the treaty at the event.
The Convention is now gathering signatures and ratifications at the United Nations headquarters in New York. Since December Tunisia and DR Congo have added their signature and Lao PDR deposited its ratification. For a full list of signatories and ratifications check out the website.
Irish CND: AGM & Strangelove
Irish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’s AGM takes place at the Mansion House, Dawson Street, Dublin 2 on Saturday 4th April from 10.30 a.m. - 12.30 p.m. Guest Speaker is Dr Tom Clonan, Defence Analyst and Lecturer, Dublin Institute of Technology. Irish CND and the Irish Film Institute present Dr Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb on Sunday 26th April, 12.50 p.m. at the IFI, as part of IFI's Kubrick Festival:
panel discussion following the screening - advance booking is advisable – (01) 679 3477 or http://www.ifibooking.ie Annual subscriptions to ICND; Under 18/Student/Unwaged/OAP €7.50; Individual €15.00; Household €20.00. e-mail email@example.com or Irish CND, P.O. Box 6327, Dublin 6.
National Chernobyl Week, 20th – 27th April
Sunday, 26th April 2009 will mark the actual 23rd Anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. In recognition of this anniversary, Chernobyl Children’s Project International will once again roll out National Chernobyl Week (20th to 27th April) to commemorate and honour the children and adults who live with the social, economic and medical deprivation as a result of the disaster which happened 23 years ago. Since the establishment of Chernobyl Children’s Project International, over €76 million in direct and indirect medical and humanitarian aid has been delivered by the Project to the Chernobyl-affected regions and over 18,000 children have been brought to Ireland for much-needed recuperative holidays. They are seeking a pool of volunteers nationwide to sell the above Charity Pins in towns, cities and villages during this week. Each CCPI branded box will have 50 pins selling at €3 per pin which we can deliver direct to your door. Please call Paula Kilcommons on 021-4312999 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Pax Christi; Knock Peace Academy, August
Knock Peace Academy: In this UN Year of Reconciliation and marking the 30th anniversary of Pope John Paul’s visit to Ireland in 1979, Pax Christi Ireland is holding a three and a half day Conference-Retreat, to learn Peace Skills, and listen to personal Journeys of Hope. The speakers will include Bishop Donal McKeown from Belfast, Fr. Alex Reid, Nuala O’Loan, Rev Ruth Patterson, Fr. Brian O’Toole and others. It will be held in Knock, Co. Mayo from 9th to 13th August 2009. Cost of full-board is €380. If you cannot attend yourself you might like to help sponsor someone else or ensure your organisation is included. Further information from Pax Christi Ireland, 52 Lower Rathmines Rd, Dublin 6, ph 01 - 496 52 93. Email: email@example.com & firstname.lastname@example.org
One Small Step
The ‘Belfast Telegraph’ has offered the One Small Step Campaign an opportunity of filling a weekly column over a number of months with personal stories of individuals who have taken steps to challenge sectarianism and segregation and help bring about change towards reconciliation and a more shared society. The focus will be on how individuals have responded to the challenge. The Community Relations Council is co-ordinating the gathering of these stories. The series began on 9th February 2009. Articles should be about 500- 600 words and written in the first person and include some personal background as context. A photo should be supplied if possible. If you have a story to tell contact the Community Relations Council. Articles (and photos) should be sent to email@example.com or ph Ray Mullan at (028) 9022 7500. The One Small Step website is at http://www.onesmallstepcampaign.org but enquiries should go to the CRC as above.
Healing Through Remembering
The Day of Private Reflection will again take place on 21st June. The new website address for HTR is www.healingthroughremembering.info (formerly ‘org’).
Burma signature campaign
A global signature campaign for Burma’s political prisoners was launched on 13th March, Burma’s Human Rights Day. A huge coalition of Burma pro-democracy groups in exile and solidarity groups around the world are participating in the campaign, which aims to collect 888,888 signatures before 24th May 2009, the legal date that Nobel Peace Prize winner Daw Aung San Suu Kyi should be released from house arrest. There are currently over 2,100 political prisoners in Burma. In Ireland, Burma Action Ireland are urging the public to sign the petition online on the BAI website or in person at street events staged by BAI in the coming weeks. The global signature campaign will run from 13th March to 24th May. For more information and to sign the petition, visit http://www.burmaactionireland.org
ISE Belfast: Reconciliation Masters, Forgiveness lecture
The Reconciliation Studies programme is ideal for graduates, community workers, and adult learners eager to study about ethnic, religious and political conflict and how such conflicts are transformed. Drawing on anthropology, politics, sociology, and theology, the programme equips students for a variety of reconciliation-related careers. On Tuesday 28th April there is an ‘open house’ for anyone interested with tea and coffee from 5.30 pm, a tour and questions and answers at 6pm, and at 7pm an open public lecture by Brian Lennon SJ on “So you can’t forgive? Moving towards freedom”. If you plan to attend, RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday 24 April or contact Caroline Clarke, Irish School of Ecumenics (Trinity College Dublin), 683 Antrim Road, Belfast BT15 4EG, ph 028 - 9077 0087.
TRCBI meets in Belfast
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission for Britain and Ireland (TRCBI) is meeting in Belfast on Saturday 25th July from 11 am – 5 pm at Quaker Meeting House, Frederick Street. This meeting is open freely to all whom have the long term interests of peacemaking in Britain and Ireland at heart, and particularly the final ending of the longtime of troubles. It is the hope of this symposium to encourage a healthy debate between both Irish and British peace thinkers, activists and spiritual leaders, so as to vision together a long term peaceful future for both Britain and Ireland. The TRCBI will examine testimony concerning all aspects of the conflict in Ireland, and allow persons who have perpetrated acts of cruelty and injustice to come forward and apologise to those whom they have wronged, whether in Britain or in Ireland, and also to empower those working for peace and reconciliation to come forward and tell their own stories. Chairing the meeting is Dr. Thomas Daffern, a Governor of the Saor Ollscoil na hÉireann and Director of the International Institute of Peace Studies and Global Philosophy (www.lulu.com/iipsgp). If you are able to attend, or send a representative, either to submit evidence or a statement or simply to listen, please contact us in advance at: TRCIB, IIPSGP, Rhos y Gallt, Llanerfyl, Nr. Welshpool, Powys, Wales, SY21 OER, Ph/Fax. 01938 - 820586
(m) 07951 - 600959. Web: http://www.educationaid.nethttp://www.holisticchannel.org.uk e-mail - email@example.com
Peace agreements database
The TJI/Transitional Justice Institute is delighted to announce launch of the Peace Agreements Database which provides details of over 640 peace agreements signed since 1990, addressing conflicts that affect over 85 jurisdictions. The Database lists peace agreements by conflict, and gives details of the date signed, parties and third parties to each agreement. Further, the Database provides details of the substance of the each agreement, by setting out the location in the text and a short synopsis of each agreement's provisions in the following categories: dealing with the past (amnesty, past mechanism, prisoner release, victims), undoing the legacy of the past (refugees, land), state institutional reform (criminal justice, policing, judicial reform, new rights institutions), enforcing the agreement (enforcement mechanism, international community, UN involvement), and agreement provisions addressing a range of other issues, such as women, civil society, and socio-economic/development. The Database also indicates where the full text of each peace agreement can be found.
The Peace Agreement Database was conceived and researched by Christine Bell and Catherine O'Rourke within the Transitional Justice Institute, and has been in development since 2004. The project emerged from work by Christine Bell over the past ten years in the collection of peace agreement texts.
Further information and access to database here
The story of Hildegard Goss-Mayr
Richard Deats has written “Marked for Life: the Story of Hildegard Goss-Mayr”, published by New City Press, 152 pages, ISBN-10:156548309X and ISBN-13: 978-1565483095, at $13.95 (available through FOR USA). Reviewed by John Dear in the Spring 2009 edition of ‘IFOR in Action’, see http://www.ifor.org/ the book tells the story of this remarkable woman including her early life in Nazi Austria and her subsequent work with Eastern Europe, the Second Vatican Council, Latin America and so on. The foreword is by Mairead Corrigan Maguire.
IPC Advocacy Package on Nuclear Disarmament
International Pax Christi has produced a 26-page advocacy package on nuclear disarmament. It discusses the current situation, gives a list of ‘nuclear states’ and explains the nuclear sharing problem, clarifies the reasons for a new momentum for nuclear disarmament and brings concrete tips for your advocacy work, as well as a list of useful websites. It will be available shortly on their website as a Focus item at http://www.paxchristi.net Pax Christi International, Rue du Vieux Marché aux Grains 21, B-1000 Bruxelles, Office Phone: +32 (0)2 502 55 50.
Convergence 14: Making the Transition to Resilience, Cultivate’s sustainable living festival takes place in Dublin, Thurles and Cloughjordan from the 22nd to the 28th of April with talks, symposia, conferences and social events. Programme at and bookings to 01 674 5773 or online.
New on our photo site:
New sets on the INNATE photo site at flickr:
Troubles and peace
We were too busy to be taking photos much of the time but this is a collection of over forty ‘Troubles and peace’ related photos from the 1980s onwards up until today, many relating to Northern Ireland peace events.
NICND and nuclear disarmament, 1980s
Other photos to add to these sets, other sets, or to start a new set, are very welcome.
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