by Robert Stewart, C.A., C.M.C.

I just returned from a two day Strategy Session of The Global Campaign for Peace Education in New York City, which I would like to share with you.  I was one of 90 participants from around the world.  The Global Campaign for Peace Education has a very important task to undertake, and I think it is important that we actively support peace education at home and throughout the world.  The Global Campaign for Peace Education is fundamental to our mission as peace educators, and the Global Campaign needs our support and skills to successfully implement it.  The following information was adapted from the Global Campaign for Peace Education  brochure.

Hague Appeal for Peace
The Hague Appeal for Peace is an international network of organizations and individuals dedicated to the abolition of war and making peace a human right.  The Global Campaign for Peace Education was launched at the Hague
Appeal for Peace conference in May 1999 (at which many of you may have  participated).  After the conference, the Hague Appeal for Peace New York and Geneva offices took the responsibility for coordinating the Campaign.

The Vision
A culture of peace will be achieved when citizens of the world understand global problems; have the skills to resolve conflicts constructively; know and live by international standards of human rights, gender and racial equality; appreciate cultural diversity; and respect the integrity of the Earth.  Such learning can not be achieved without intentional, sustained and systematic education for peace.

The urgency and necessity of such education was acknowledged by the member states of UNESCO in 1974 and reaffirmed in 1995 .  (In other words, your country made commitments to integrate peace education into your education systems.)  It is time to call upon ministries of education, educational institutions and policy makers to fulfill the commitments.

The goal of the Global Campaign for Peace Education is to assure that all educational systems throughout the world will educate for a culture of peace.

The Need
The Global Campaign for Peace Education seeks to develop the capacities, in teachers and learners, to face challenges of unprecedented proportion: the continued development of weapons of mass destruction, armed conflicts between states and ethnic groups, the spread of racism, gender inequality, community violence, the huge and widening gap between the rich and the poor throughout the globalized economy, massive violations of human rights and the degradation of the environment.

Peace Education
In order to meet the challenges posed by these interwoven problems, the coming generation deserves a radically different education.  People need the skills and knowledge to create and maintain peace.  Peace Education is a
holistic, participatory process that includes teaching for and about human rights, justice, gender equality, environmental sustainability, disarmament, and human security.  The methodology of peace education encourages
reflection, critical thinking, cooperation, and responsible action.  It promotes multiculturalism, and is based on values of dignity, equality, and respect.  Peace education is intended to prepare students for democratic participation in school and society.

How Does the Campaign Work?
The Global Campaign for Peace Education has two goals:

To accomplish these tasks, the Campaign works in a networking style and depends on the support and collaboration of local and international educators, organizations, researchers, youth activists, and policy-makers committed to Campaign goals.  Those active in the Campaign design and share curricula relating to local and international issues; organize workshops and conferences; train and inspire youth to educate for peace in their schools and communities; create forums, working groups and delegations to meet with government and education officials; develop peace education resource centers; train teachers to teach for peace; and participate in international networks to advocate for the inclusion of peace education into schools and communities.

Suggested Action
- Visit the Campaign web site and 
- Endorse the Global Campaign for Peace Education personally (and encourage your organizations to endorse it)
- Connect with and support the Youth Program
- Find out who is participating in the Campaign for Peace Education in your country
- Organize or join local Campaign events
- Subscribe to Peace Matters, the newsletter of the Hague Appeal for Peace
- Advocate for peace education (postcards are available from HAP)
- Read "Learning to Abolish War" (available from the HAP web site) and other peace education resources

If you would like more information, please feel free to contact Bob Stewart stewartr [at] or Meg Gardinier, the Hague Appeal for Peace Global Campaign for Peace Education Coordinator at

November 27, 2002