Peace Offerings

Every two years, optimists and noncynics of various races and backgrounds get together and hold a National Conference on Peacemaking and Conflict Resolution. In what some might find a rich social and political irony, the Valley has been chosen as the site of the biennial event this time around--it runs from Thursday, May 27, to Tuesday, June 1, at the Phoenix Civic Plaza, Second Street and Adams, and at the Hyatt Regency Phoenix, 122 North Second Street.

A wide variety of seminars, speeches, panel discussions and performances will be presented during the six-day get-together, "the world's largest conflict resolution conference," exploring "peacemaking, social justice, diversity, and the resolution of conflict in every shape its organizers and participants can imagine." Here are some other highlights of the conference:

The First World Youth Summit: The confab, scheduled for Friday, May 28, through Tuesday, June 1, at Phoenix Civic Plaza, is designed to "bring together youth from around the world that are involved in peacemaking, let them share their successes and challenges, learn new skills, and develop strategies to increase the peace."

Language Diversity: A workshop, titled "Strategies in Language Diversity," is slated for 2 p.m. Sunday, May 30, at the Phoenix Civic Plaza. The plan is to "discuss strategies that have been employed in the past to affirm, support and maintain their respective languages, while seeking ways and means to demonstrate their validity in peaceful ways in a multilingual society."

Mural Auction: A 12-foot-by-10-foot "peace mural" titled Weaving a New Beginning--also the theme of this year's NCPCR conference--by Guadalupe artist David Martinez is to be auctioned off over the course of the conference, with proceeds to benefit Hispanic-youth scholarships.

In addition, each day of the conference from Friday on will focus on a different culture's tradition of peacemaking--American Indian on Friday, May 28; Hispanic/Latino on Saturday, May 29; African/African-American on Sunday, May 30; Asian/Pacific Islander on Monday, May 31; and European American on Tuesday, June 1. The conference is "open to all who are interested in issues of peacemaking and conflict resolution." For detailed information on registration, scholarship opportunities, schedules and locations, call 1-877-39-PEACE.

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M.V. Moorhead
Contact: M.V. Moorhead