Peace Day Austin is a collaborative grass roots initiative to promote meaningful city-wide participation in the UN's International Day of Peace, 21 September. We're using the platform of Peace Day as a global time of local opportunity to come together in spirit and action for greater peace in ourselves, our communities, our world. Community, faith, educational, tech and arts groups -all ages and races - will engage in peace-related activities every day from 9/11 to 9/21 (Peace Day.)
Choice. Peace is a choice. We can choose love over hate, forgiveness over bitterness. Peace Day Austin invites each individual to experience how to make this choice and make it real - how to overcome hatred, bullying, road rage, sexual violence and how to choose forgiveness, kindness, love, respect, and dignity for all. Peace is not a "them" thing. It's a "me" thing. Peace begins inside ourselves.
Peace Day Austin brings awareness through doing - though participatory activities including symposia, films, conversations over food, lectures, concerts, poetry readings, interactive art installations, etc. The capacity of the arts to cross cultural barriers and build empathy is a powerful tool available to all. And fun things - like the 60s peace van that will travel around Austin inviting people on the street to choose not to hate and to take a peace selfie by the van to send to friends.
This will become a desirable annual event that engages the entire community and works to build a culture of peace that other cities and communities will want to emulate. As the founder of Peace One Day says, "The real success of Peace Day comes down to individuals getting involved and taking ownership of the day." Taking ownership is key - taking ownership of the belief that it is up to us human beings on earth to bring peace to our fellow human beings.