The Center for Peace Education (CPE) welcomed 2021 continuing its momentum of webinars and other activities that focused on peace and nonviolence at various levels, from the family to the international sphere.
Nuclear Weapons - Outlawed
CPE has been a long-time Philippine campaigner for the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (Nuclear Ban Treaty) is a landmark global agreement to ban nuclear weapons adopted in 2017, after a decade of advocacy by ICAN and its partners. On 22 January 2021, the agreement officially Entered into Force making nuclear weapons legally and comprehensively prohibited by international law.
The CPE joined the global celebration of the outlawing of nuclear weapons by organizing a Twitter party featuring CPE-initiated tweets tagging PH Senators which at that time was due to deliberate on the Treaty’s ratification. On 1 February 2021, the Philippine Senators unanimously concurred with the Nuclear Ban Treaty ratification ensuring the Philippines’ commitment to maintaining its territory as a nuclear weapons free zone.
Nonviolence for the Next Generation
The Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP) celebrated its first ever virtual CEAP National JEEPGY Conference from January 25 - February 1, 2021. CPE’s senior associate, Dr Jasmin Nario-Galace, was a speaker for the CPE-organized forum ‘Nonviolence for the Next Generation’. Gathering a total of 9,700 views, this webinar was part of a series that focused on the Justice and Peace Pillar Program of JEEPGY, and featured the leaders of the global Catholic Nonviolence Initiative. The webinar emphasized Nonviolence as a spirituality, a way of life and an effective tool for change.
Parenting for Peace Seminar
Last January 27, the CPE and the MC Family Studies Program organized “Peaceful Parenting: 10 Tips on Raising Grateful Kids”, a webinar featuring Fr. Arun Thomas of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate and Riza C. Lepasana, RSW, of the House of Refuge Foundation, Inc. This webinar is part of CPE’s Families for Peace program shepherded by Dr. Gail Galang. It aims to strengthen the positive well-being of families across various circumstances. Together with the MC Family Studies Department, the CPE produces episodes covering various topics and issues affecting the family. These episodes are offered every Saturday at 4pm on Channel E live streams, and uploaded in the MC Family Studies YouTube page.
Certificate Program in Peace and Conflict Resolution Education
The CPE and the College of education are pleased to announce the official start of the Certificate Program in Peace and Conflict Resolution Education. The certificate has a total of 15 units of course work, covering these topics: fundamental concepts and issues of peace and violence; peace psychology; principles and practice of nonviolence; conflict prevention, resolution and transformation; and comprehensive scope and approaches to peace education. Learn more here.
World Interfaith Harmony Week
The World Interfaith Harmony Week, adopted by the UN General Assembly, is an annual celebration in the first week of February that emphasizes interreligious understanding and dialogue as important dimensions of a culture of peace.
On 4 February, Dr Loreta Castro, OIC Director, spoke at “Building Bridges and Reconciliation”, an international webinar organized by the Rome-based JPIC group and the Catholic Nonviolence Initiative. Dr. Castro presented CPE’s Twinning Project with a public school where the students are Muslims, Rajah Muda National High School in Pikit, North Cotabato. The Twinning Project breaks barriers of prejudice which have plagued the southern Philippines due to the longstanding armed conflict prior to the Bangsamoro peace agreement.
In the Philippines, the UN Interfaith Harmony Partners Manila network, of which the center is a member, organized a two-part webinar from 4-5 February with the theme, "Living the Spirit of Harmony and Solidarity Amidst COVID-19 and a Wounded World”. Speaker for Day 2, Dr Castro shared her own journey in peace and interfaith work alongside educators and partners in the interfaith work. CPE and Rajah Muda National High School attended the session.
PyeongChang Peace Forum
Last 8 February, CPE participated in the parallel session 'Asia Civic Agenda on Peace and SDGs in 2021' alongside peacebuilders from the Asia-Pacific region in the 2021 PyeongChang Peace Forum (PPF). The PPF is a global peace platform that delivers the peace-establishing momentum from the Korean-Peninsula over to the global community.
Project officer, Bianca Pabotoy, shared experiences, challenges, and ways forward in localizing UNSCR 1325 (Women, Peace and Security) and 2250 (Youth, Peace and Security) in the time of Covid-19. Featured initiatives are WePeace, CPE's localization project of the Philippines' National Action Plan on 1325 with The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Manila, and programs and projects of the Young Women Leaders for peace-Philippines.
The Center for Peace Education has kept itself busy in the past two months welcoming this new year with even more local and global engagements knowing the work of peace continues amidst difficult and bleak times. Living in unprecedented times, peace is the ray of hope needed more than ever.