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1st IRSMP Summer Peace Building Course is huge success


The Interreligious Solidarity Movement for Peace (IRSMP), Zamboanga Basilan Integrated Development Alliance (ZABIDA) and Peace Advocates Zamboanga (PAZ) remarkably conducted the 1st Summer Peace Building Course with twenty-two (22) graduates from partner organizations last April 11-16, 2011 at Euntes Asian center, Sinunuc, Zamboanga City.

Fr. Angel C. Calvo, CMF, PAZ President and Lead Convenor of IRSMP shared the major threats of peace that motivated the movement to organize the peace course. With the partners from ZABIDA, as immediate beneficiaries of the peace course, the culture of peace had been very instrumental in various peace development works for both Zamboanga City and nearby Basilan Province.

Dr. Grace J. Rebollos, WMSU President, Fr. Angel C. Calvo, CMF, Ret. Department of Education Division Superintendent Hji. Abdu Rahim K. Kenoh, Prof. Renato Yumol of WMSU College of Agriculture, Ms. Dedette Suacito, Executive Director of Nagdilaab Foundation Inc. and Sr. Emma I. Delgado, PAZ Executive Secretary served as the Resource Speakers and Facilitators of the said peace building course.

The Peace Building Course highlighted the following topics to include an Analysis of Conflict and Violence and Societal Context, Understanding Concept of Peace and its Implications, Peace, Faith and Interreligious namely peace Education, Peace Advocacy, Peace and Ecology and Peace and Governance and Human rights.

Aimed at instilling in the minds and hearts of the development workers, referring to the participants of the said peace building course, the summer peace building course hugely reflects the noble sentiments of peace advocates towards a culture designed to address not just basic social issues but heighten the consciousness of individuals and groups towards a life committed for peace.

Mr. Abduljamar Damahan, member of the Golden Crescent Consortium of Peace Builders and Affiliates (GCCPBA) and a columnist of the Zamboanga Peninsula, awarded as Class Valedictorian emphasized the role of peace not just in the local scene but even extending to the global community. He stressed the importance of a life dedicated for peace especially for advocates whose life had been struggled with major difficulties of reaching out to the vulnerable sectors. Nevertheless, it had always been a challenge to further advance peace to greater heights.

As a reflection of its success, the IRSMP geared up towards the 2nd Summer Peace Building Course to members of the movement and other fellow advocates from various sectors- especially government line agencies and local government units.

Participants came from Nagdilaab Foundation Inc., Katilingban Para sa Kalambuan Inc., western Mindanao State University-Reach Out to Others Foundation, Zamboanga City High School Main, Ayala National High School, Claret School of Zamboanga City, Claret Sama Foundation Inc., Peace Advocates Zamboanga, Interreligious Solidarity Movement for Peace, Ateneo de Zamboanga University and Amores Interfaith Association.

By Aldrin B. Abdurahim

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