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Winter 2003 Newsletter

News From Peace House

A Newsletter of Peace Education Resources and Opportunities

RESTAVEC

Restavec is a French word that means "staying with." It is the term given to over two hundred and fifty thousand children in Haiti who are slaves. It is also the title of the best selling book by Jean-Robert Cadet who was a restavec in Haiti until he came to the United States as a teenager, was freed and received an education. Cadet’s story is moving.

Restavecs are poor children who are given to wealthy families under the pretense that the children will benefit from the new living arrangements. In reality the children are made to do the work that paid servants refuse to do. They are deprived of their humanity and of an education. They are made to stay up late and rise before the family to take care of the basic needs of the families.

Cadet’s book is so unusual because he is one of the few restavecs able to educate himself and to speak and write about this cruel, unjust system. Cadet was a Westheimer Peace Symposium speaker this fall at Wilmington College.

Whether in book form or in person, it is difficult to learn about Cadet’s journey and not feel compelled to do something about the situation In Haiti. One Wilmington College student felt compelled to help and wrote to Cadet to indicate his intentions. The result: the student was invited to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland to listen to Cadet testify about the situation.

Would you like to learn more about restavecs and Jean-Robert’s story of hope? The audiotape of the talk is available from the PRC for five dollars. His book is available for $12.95. Visit http://us.ilo.org/ilokidsnew/index.html to learn more about the International Labor Organization Resolution 182 which would ban child slavery.

I encourage you to learn more about restavecs. Everyone is attendance at the Peace Symposium was touched by Cadet’s story. One of the things which made Jean-Robert so engaging was that he mixed humor in with the grave details of his young life. Without his humorous insights, the story would have been too unbearable.

Jim Boland

The TRUE Report

Jean True

12th Annual Westheimer Peace Symposium

"Stolen Childhood: Restoring Hope" was the Social Justice theme for the 2002 Westheimer Peace Symposium held Wednesday, October 23, on the main campus of Wilmington College.

Lori Heninger, Quaker Representative to the United Nations opened the day's program with "Girls in Armed Camps." Children as young as 8 are abducted and forced into armies where they are sometimes used as fodder--the first "soldiers" sent in against enemy fire. Increasingly more of these 300,000 children are girls who cook, serve as "wives" to male soldiers, and many fight, die and participate in massacres. The United Nations is trying to find ways to ease these girls back into their societies though returning to their families is not always possible.

Jean-Robert Cadet spoke of his childhood lived in servitude. As a child he lived a life without a family, a name or a birthday. He labored from dusk to dawn in the home of a mistress who had received him as a gift from Cadet's real father. Cadet spent daytime hours cleaning and performing chores before settling into his bed late at night. His bed was under the kitchen table when he was allowed to stay inside the house. A twist of fate landed his mistress's family in New York and a birth certificate was purchased for Cadet on the black market. He is the author of Restavec: From Haitian Slave Child to Middle Class American.

Eileen Cooper Reed, Director, Children's Defense Fund-Ohio, really hit home with the audience when she provided statistics about children in Clinton County, OH. Reed stated about poor children in general, "Of all poor kids in 2000, three out of four live in working families. We under educate, we miseducate and we incarcerate these children at a higher rate than any other children."

Carl Upchurch closed the day's program with "How to Reach the Unreachable Child." Upchurch, born in a ghetto in Philadelphia, was convinced that he had been and always would be nothing. During his time in prison, Upchurch changed from prisoner to peacemaker. To talk to inmates clearly and plainly about their self-destructive behavior he came up with the term "niggerization." At the heart of this idea is a person's (black or white) conviction that he/she is less than others and it is characterized by "contempt for self, for my people, for everybody," said Upchurch. Self-destructive behavior is learned from others in a climate of violence, disrespect and degradation. His own childhood emotional development was accompanied, he said, "by insults from the lips of my mother to my 7-year-old spirit." Upchurch wrote his story in his book Convicted in the Womb: One Man’s Journey from Prisoner to Peacemaker.

The heart of the problem with the children discussed this year is the violence committed against them. However, we did want to show that there is hope and things are being done to try to help them.

Audiotape cassettes of any or all of these presentations can be purchased from the Peace Resource Center, ordering information is on the next page. One tape costs $6.50 ($5.00 for the tape and $1.50 postage). Two tapes are $12. ($10.00 plus $2.00 postage). Three tapes are $17.50 ($15.00 for tapes plus $2.50 postage. All four tapes can be purchased for $20.00 and will be sent to you in a plastic case. No postage will be charged for orders of four tapes

The books by Cadet and Upchurch have been the best sellers we have had in the Peace Resource Center. Restavec is priced at $12.95 and Convicted in the Womb is $13.95. If you wish to order either or both of these books, we will only charge $1.00 for postage for one book and an additional $ .50 for each additional book.

Please send your orders to Jean True and mention that you read about them in this newsletter. Thank you

Funds for Quaker Organizations

Two other Quaker organizations are in need of funds at this time. The Friends Committee on National Legislation is seeking funds to renovate its important office space in Washington D. C. Visit www.fcnl.org for more information. Quaker House, a four story brownstone just blocks from the United Nations in New York City is also in need of funds to free them of their financial burdens in their fiftieth year of operation. Please consider supporting these important organizations. For more information of Quaker House visit the Quaker UN Office at www.quno.org.

DONOR REPORT

1 July through 31 December 2002

An amazing total of $ 13,510 has been donated to the Peace Resource Center during this six months period. This high level of support shown to the Center is very heartening - especially considering the economic downturn the country is experiencing. Please accept our sincere appreciation for your contributions so the Center may continue to provide peace materials, workshops, peer mediation training, research files, and book tables in local schools. In addition, donations are also essential in upgrading the PRC building and equipment. Our next equipment purchase will consist of fire proof file cabinets to house the original Hiroshima/Nagasaki Memorial Collection.

Irwin Abrams - David R. Bassett - Michael Birkel - Jean Boland -Foster J. Boyd - Arthur L. Buell - Catholic Charities - Mary Claybon - Jonathan H. Collett - Marie P. Condon - Don J. Cosgrove - Dayton Friends Meeting - C. Proctor Dean - Patricia A. Dienst - Mary Eagleson - Eclipse Consulting - Anne Ellis -Dorothy Fraembs - Esther Franklin - Larry Gara - Beth Ann Gehres - Bruce N. Glover - David Goguen - Margaret Guentert - David M. Hadley - David A. Harcum - Dale C. Hayes - Stephen R. Hein - Muriel Hiatt - Mary Katheryn Hilberg - Anthony Hinrichs -Christine D. Hodgson - Samuel C. Johnson - Marybeth Kantner -Jean Kerney - Wayne P. Lammers - Robin Lloyd - Robert Maher -Lowe-Marshall Trust - Margit Meissner - Thomas J. Menacher -Terry C. Miller - Ross Morgan - Darleen M. Myers - James A. Neyhouse - Michael Neyhouse - Ellen S. Novar - Timothy N. O’Connell - Sterling Olmsted - Kenneth T. Overman - Beth Parrish - Shirley Parsons - Verda Mae Peters - Kellye A. Pinkleton - Neal W. Redding - Religious Society of Friends - Margaret B. Rickard - Joan L. Skidmore - Hideko Tamura Snider - Gladys R. Spencer - Donna Mae Spring - Arthur Springsteen - Mary Elizabeth Stanfield - Frank A. Stone - Helen M. Sutton - Patricia Thomas -Jean Anne True - Mark A. Williams - Wilmington Yearly Meeting -Phyllis T. Wood - James N. Yamazaki - Mary Rose Zink

Peace Related Web Sites

http://www.campus-adr.org is a free, new resource available to colleges and universities. The resource is a website created by the Campus Conflict Resolution Resource Center. Conflict is widespread and inevitable in higher education, thus making the appropriate management of conflict vital. The goal of the website is to provide information to help people better manage conflict at colleges and universities.

http://www.wcc-coe.org/dov is the new website launched by the World Council of Churches for the Decade to Overcome Violence (2001-2010). The new website provides an open space for exchanging ideas, stories, news of resources and events, and information on organizations, networks and initiatives related to overcoming violence and seeking reconciliation. The site is in English, French, German and Spanish.

http://www.dwcw.org/ is an email newsletter reporting recent contributions and developments on the Dialogue Webpage for Conflicts Worldwide (DWCW). The DWCW is a resource and service for all people interested in conflict and its prevention, which aims to contribute to the improvement of mutual understanding between opposing sides of conflict throughout the world. It is presented by the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention (JCCP)

http://www.cinciearth.org/News.html is the site to find upcoming events related to nature, spirituality and ecological happenings in the Cincinnati area.

http://www.moveon.org/technicaldifficulties MoveOn.org, is distributing this piece as a membership builder. With more than a million participants world-wide, MoveOn is showing how the Internet can be used to bring democracy back to politics. In the last couple years we've focused on Campaign Finance Reform, Environmental Protection, and more recently, opposing Unilateral, Pre-emptive war on Iraq. We've had an incredible impact on this debate through MoveOn, helping pull together a mainstream coalition of ordinary folks and prominent organizations, like the Sierra Club, NAACP, and National Council of Churches.

BOOKS FROM OTHER PLACES

REFLECTIONS OF AFRICAN-AMERICAN PEACE LEADERS 1898-1960s: A Documentary History edited by Marvin J. Berlowitz, Eric R. Jackson, and Nathan A. Long is now available from The Edwin Mellen Press; Order Fulfillment Dept., PO Box 450, Lewiston, NY 14092-0450 customer service e-mail: cs@Wzrd.com ISBN # 0-7734-6930-3 $99.95/£64.95 196pp. 2002. Individuals: Save 20% on the list price by using your Mastercard, Visa or American Express and ordering by phone: U.S./Canada: (716) 754-2778. www.mellenpress.com

Gatherings

The 2003 NCPCR/PeaceWeb Conference & Expo, "Weaving The Future of Peacemaking", will be held in College Park, GA at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel - Atlanta Airport. NCPCR/PeaceWeb 2003 offers 200 workshops and training sessions; theatre; art; film; concerts; receptions; celebrations; keynote speakers; and plenary sessions. The NCPCR/PeaceWeb Expo offers demonstrations, exhibitions, vendors, and the PeaceWeb Book Store. Concurrently, the Network of Youth Peacemakers (NYP) will hold its third gathering, "Peace 'N' It Together", April 3 - 7, 2003 featuring Co-motion youth activist training, diverse workshops, the Culture Jam, the Hip-Hop Peace Summit and Concert. Join peacemakers, conflict resolution practitioners, educators, youth, youth workers, social workers, activists, community organizers, experienced professionals, beginners, community based leaders. www.apeacemaker.net for more information.

Safe Schools - Safe Communities – Catch the Wave May 8 - 10, 2003. The Conference will take place at St. Mary's University in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It is intended to deepen participants' understanding of ways of working together to promote and sustain safe schools and communities. The conference will appeal to a broad range of professionals and volunteers working with or for safer schools and communities including: educators, police, parents, researchers, academics, youth, community groups. Sessions will focus on prevention of violence, abuse, harassment, and intimidation. Conference Themes include: Media and Technology - Safety and Violence Issues, Building Character and Enhancing Pro-social Behavior, Understanding, Preventing, & Responding to Youth and Childhood, Aggression & Violence, Relationship and Family Violence, Integrated School-Community Programs, Bully Prevention Strategies. Reply to: stewartr@peace.ca

The Ohio Commission on Dispute Resolution and Conflict Management and the Ohio Department of Education Host Spring School Conflict Management Award Ceremony and Conference May 8th, 2003. The award ceremony and keynote address will take place the morning of May 8th in the Statehouse Atrium in Columbus. The Conference will take place the afternoon on May 8th on the 31st floor of the Riffe Center in Columbus. The keynote speaker will be Linda Lantieri, an expert in school conflict management and social and emotional learning. She is founding director of the Resolving Conflicts Creatively Program and has over 30 years of experience in education. She is a co-author of Waging Peace in Our Schools. Linda will speak on the ties between social and emotional learning and conflict management. During the afternoon participants can choose from four concurrent breakout sessions on topics relevant to school-based conflict management. These sessions will include:

  • Conflict Resolution Education and Social and Emotional Learning - Linda Lantieri.
    Positive Discipline Strategies for the Classroom - Dr. Jim Boland of Wilmington College, Peace Resource Center.
  • Best Practices in School Conflict Management - Dr. Tricia Jones, Editor of Does it Work, The Case for Conflict Resolution Education in Our Nation's Schools.
  • Socially Abusive Relationships among Youth: More Pain than a Punch - Dr. Jo Lynn Carney of Youngstown State U. and Dr. Richard Hazler of Ohio University.

Registration forms available in late March through the Commission's Web site at www.state.oh.us/cdr or call (614) 752-9595. No charge to attend; but seats are limited.

THE BEST STRATEGIES OF COMMUNITY VIOLENCE PREVENTION Thursday, April 24, 2003, 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. The Community Violence workshop is designed for police personnel, school administrators, counselors and teachers, social workers, juvenile and adult corrections administrators and staff, other community groups and agencies, and concerned citizens who are interested in adolescent violence prevention. This workshop will offer the best practical strategies of violence prevention in multiple social contexts. The morning of the workshop, presenters will share ideas with the audience and engage in a question-and-answer session. In the afternoon, presenters will be available to audience members in breakout rooms. Presenters: Dr. Scott Decker, Dr. Finn-Aage Esbensen, Dr. Frank van Gemert, Dr. Mark Singer, Mr. Michael Walker, Dr. Neil Weiner. Keynote: William D. Mason, Prosecuting Attorney, Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Prosecutor’s Office. 6 hours (CEUs) can be obtained for $10.00 Location: Inter-Continental Hotel and Conference Center, Cleveland OH. For additional information, contact Dr. Mark S. Fleisher 216-368-2329 or the Begun Center Website http://msass.cwru.edu/begun

Other News of Note

Pax Educare The Connecticut Center for Peace Education has been established by Mary Lee Morrison, L.C.S.W., Ph.D. Pax Educare links educational and community practitioners (pre-K through higher education, scholars, activists, religious and community groups) and institutions to materials, curricula research and training in peace and conflict studies, including nonviolence; mediation; cultural, gender and other issues around diversity; human rights, ecology and the environment. Located at 129 Penn Drive, West Hartford, CT 06119 (relocating to Hartford Fall/Winter 2002). (860) 930-3182 or 232-2966 Fax (860) 232-2688, email: Marylee898@attbi.com

Whatcom Peace & Justice Center has opened in Bellingham, Washington Its purpose is to serve as a proactive community voice for peace and social justice in Whatcom County. Email: whatcompjc@fidalgo.net

Peace SEEDS (Groups that Support, Educate, Engage, Disseminate) The idea of Peace SEEDS is to build a nation-wide network of small groups of people meeting regularly, supporting each other, and engaging in letter writing, lobbying and other actions. These groups can create an environment for education, sharing of ideas, and creativity for the actions undertaken by individuals or the group. Also they can reach out to others to open up dialogue, and creating better understanding. If you are interested in starting such a group, contact Scilla Wahrhaftig at (412) 371 3607 peace.seeds@verizon.org