Monthly Archives: March 2011

Hats For A Purpose Updated

It’s an exciting day.  My first hat is completed and many of you tell me you are hard at work on your hats.  We have hats coming from several states but so far nothing internationally.  If you have friends or family in other countries it would be great if they would consider knitting, crocheting or weaving a hat for distribution to children at risk.

Let’s get some pictures of you and your hat(s).  It’s a great way to motivate others to join us here at Hats For A Purpose.

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Rotary Peace Fellows, Impact On The World

As wars appear to rage on and conflict takes its toll in human misery, a unique group of people are infusing the world with a  spirit of peace, tolerance and understanding.  These Rotary Peace Fellows are professionals trained in the root causes of conflict, the theories of international relations and effective models of cooperation, conflict prevention, sustainable development and social change.

Currently working in governance, diplomacy, nongovernmental and private organizations, these Fellows have studied a broad range of topics including human rights, ethics and world politics, arms control, peacekeeping, international law and global women’s issues at one of the six universities hosting a Rotary Peace Center.  They are leaders in their profession and in their national and international volunteer service.  They are the faces of peace and conflict resolution that Rotary has long believed possible.

Rotary Peace Fellows began traveling abroad to pursue master’s level degrees in 2002 and now number almost 500 strong..  University partners are located at Duke University and University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in North Carolina; International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan; Universidad del Salvador, Buenos Aires, Argentina; University of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England; University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.  Each university partner has a unique curriculum focusing on aspects of international studies providing a broad range of academic experience.

In 2006, Rotary created a shorter professional development certificate program designed to attract mid-to-upper level professionals already hard at work in peace related fields. Rotary selected Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand for the intensive three to six month course designed to expand the participants’ global outlook and strengthen their abilities making a positive impact on future peace work.

When you meet a Rotary Peace Fellow you will never forget it –  a deputy high commissioner for the court in Zambia, a doctor working to provide neonatal care in an area of the world where many children die in infancy, a mediator implementing better social and environmental policies, a humanitarian aid agency officer, an educator working with youth from different religious and ethnic groups to prevent future conflict.  Click here to see more of these beautiful faces of peace.

The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International conducts a globally competitive search for Peace Fellow candidates each year.  Candidates must apply through a local Rotary Club and complete an application that includes academic transcripts, test scores and all related documents required for admission the university of choice.

Interested?  Do you know someone who is ready to make this type of commitment?  Watch this short video and then go to How To Apply for more information.

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Hands In Peace

People talk about peace, write about it, wonder if it’s possible but here’s a team of people doing something to cause peace to happen.  The Hands In Peace precept is simple:  combine children from disparate communities using athletic movement and the arts in a non-competitive setting to learn to understand and communicate respectfully and absorb each other’s cultures…..and all before they become adversaries!

Meet my friend, Jaimen McMillan, founder of Hand In Peace who, since 1985, along with his a team of global and community leaders has hosted hundreds of local and regional Hands In Peace Games or Festivals for over 50,000 children from 35 cities around the world.  Using a modern model of the ancient Greek Olympics, the five disciplines of the Pentathlon – discus, wrestling, javelin, jumping and running are incorporated with music, dance, art, and poetry to weave a fabric of peace and understanding..

By removing the competitive nature of the games, children learn to know and honor cultural diversity, develop athletic ability and social skills that last a lifetime.  Teachers and youth leaders from around the world provide training and help the children to cheer each other on.  Teams are made up of children from different countries, religions  and ethnic background.  There is no competition among team participants  as everyone works to improve his or her personal best.  There are no winners or losers – just children learning to live together in peace.

The first International Festival was held in Olympia, Greece in 2001 with over 250 children from communities in conflict including Kosovo, Serbia, North and South Cyprus, Palestine and Ireland.  Other International Festivals have been held in Delphi, Greece; Lang Fang, China and Quito, Ecuador.  Hands In Peace was invited to exhibit at the United Nations in 2003 and 2005.

Join me in watching a short video about the 2009 Hands In Peace Festival in Sacramento, California and then check back at A Noble Purpose to learn more about Hands In Peace.

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End Polio Now, The Promise

In 1985 Rotary International made a promise to the children of the world…eradicate the wild polio virus. Not seen in this country for many years, polio is still endemic in four countries: Nigeria, India, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

To eradicate polio, Rotarians have mobilized by the hundreds of thousands. They’re working to ensure that children are immunized against this crippling disease and that surveillance is strong despite the poor infrastructure, extreme poverty, and civil strife of many countries. Since the PolioPlus program’s inception in 1985, more than two billion children have received the oral polio vaccine.  With the new bivalent vaccines, new delivery methods and highly technical tracking and auditing eradication is possible.

Rotary’s US$200 Million Challenge is the Rotary Foundation’s response to the two grants totaling $355 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help eradicate polio. Every dollar given to PolioPlus will be counted toward the $200 million match, which must be completed by 30 June 2012.  Currently Rotary has raised $163M.

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How to Crochet a Hat For a Purpose

From time to time we will provide some instructional videos on crocheting, knitting and weaving hats.  Today’s comes from Mikey’s blog.

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Join Us in Making a Winter Hat for a Child

Thanks to the people who responded to my initial request, thirty handmade winter hats for kids are in the works. We need more people to get involved so if you knit, crochet, sew or weave we can use your skill.

In much of the world, it’s been a long, cold winter and so many children have not had the benefit of a warm winter hat.  We need to prepare for next winter now.  Our goal is 90 hats by October 2011.  Hats will be distributed to organizations that work directly with children at risk.  If we have more hats they will be distributed in areas where you live and work.

Please join us now.  You will make a difference to a child.

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