INTERNATIONAL DAY 2013 – October 9, 2013, Minneapolis, Minnesota
We are happy to report that International Day 2013 was a great success! Thanks to all of you who came and made the day extra special. We had about 30 attendees throughout the day to engage with our line-up. In the morning, we heard Mel Duncan, co-founder of the Nonviolent Peaceforce, speak about lessons learned in unarmed civilian peacekeeping. Later, an American Restorative Justice pioneer, Mark Umbreit (Center for Restorative Justice and Peacemaking), spoke about his new interest in forgiveness and his latest book, Dancing with the Energy of Energy of Conflict and Trauma: Letting Go. And Gina Barbieri from the IFC’s Compliance Advisor Ombudsman office, spoke about citizen-driven accountability through mediation internationally.
At lunch, International Day participants made their way to the ACR Membership Luncheon, where all conference attendees were present, and Mary Damianakis and Rochelle Arms presented our two International Oustanding Leadership Awards to Hal Saunders and Sierra James (Ba Futuru). Both awardees spoke about their work in the afternoon. Hal shared his diplomacy experiences working alongside five U.S. presidents and emphasizing the value of relationship in politics, and Sierra shared stories and videos of unique peace and education programs run by Ba Futuru in Timor Leste’s violence-affected populations.
Finally, Rochelle wrapped up the day with a brief update on the Chantal Paydar Foundation’s latest summer scholarship recipients; and also the Foundation’s projects in Uganda and Kenya, in collaboration with past awardees, Sister Pauline Acayo and George Gachara.
We had a great time in Minneapolis. Thank you all who participated for the wonderful day, and to those of you who couldn’t make it this time around, we hope you to see you next year in Cincinnati!