By Shane A. Scott
“If we do not teach our children about peace, someone will teach them about violence.” This quote by Colman McCarthy is currently my driving force behind a project I am leading called Peace is Happening! (www.peaceishappening.org). It is a documentary on Jerusalem Schools that tells the stories of youth in Jerusalem being proactive peacemakers and the impact they are having on the adults around them. With all the recent shootings at schools and parks, peace education is needed now more that ever!
This past August, I was honored and humbled to receive the NSHSS Educator of Distinction Award for the work I did while serving as Principal for Jerusalem High School. An initiative I started called “Days of Peace” where we tracked the number of days without a fight has blossomed into some pretty impressive acts of proactive peacemaking and these stories need to be told!
During the last week of September, I was in Jerusalem shooting the first phase of the documentary while working with two local videographers who are alumni of the school. I am also working with the staff (some of whom I recruited and trained while I was there) to develop a curriculum from the initiative I began with Days of Peace, their current peace projects, and the video captured through this documentary. The goal is to use this curriculum around the world to train youth to not only be non-violent, but also be proactive peacemakers!
We have partnered with the Center for Proactive Peacemaking International (www.cppi.co) to help raise funds and awareness of this amazing project. We’re really excited to have such a strong partner working with us to tell these stories and develop this life-changing curriculum.
I will close as I began, with a quote. When questioned about the resolution of Apartheid, Desmond Tutu explained it is not arms that will bring about change; it is the collective of the people. He stated, “When people decide they want to be free…there is nothing that can stop them.” I challenge you to be a people who want to be free: free of poverty, of hunger, of human trafficking, free of war. Ladies and gentlemen, peace isn’t just possible—Peace is Happening! Join the movement!
For more information about how you can join the movement and get the stories out to the world, visit www.peaceishappening.org.