The District 418 Ghana of Lions Clubs International; a charity organisation that supports and serves humanity, joins the world in commemorating the International Day of Peace by highlighting the importance of promoting the Peace Poster Contest for children in Ghana as a means of maintaining, sustaining peace and security.
Annually on September 21, the world marks the day to underscore the need for ensuring peace and the year 2022 is no exception, hence the theme slated for this year’s celebration is “End racism. Build Peace”.
Governor’s Speech on Peace and Stability
As part of the celebration, the District Governor of District 418, Lion Emmanuel Kojo Gyimah PMJF, District Peace Poster Chairperson, Lion Diane Novis Zukowski MJF, in partnership with Rev. Dr. Lawrence Tetteh, International Peace Ambassador and the entire Ghana Lions Club Members are using the opportunity to create and increase awareness about the club’s efforts towards this year's edition of Peace Poster Contest which begins next month.
International Day of Peace, globally celebrated was established by the United Nations General Assembly for strengthening the standards of peace, and the day is devoted to observing 24 hours of cease-fire and non-violence, hence we need to be actors of peace and ensure stability among all.
The District Governor, has continually exhibited quality traits of promoting peace throughout all the spheres of Lions Club International missions where peace remains a vital part of the organisation’s role, and peace is an element that cannot be overemphasised in our current dispensation because it is a possible tool for development.
District 418 Peace Poster Contest Chairperson’s remark
In this limelight, Lions Clubs International Peace Poster Contest is open for registration now and over 600,000 children would be sharing their visions of peace through the art of painting.
Children of age between 11 and 13 years from various schools can take part in this contest and there is also a prize to be won by the overall winner with some consolation prizes for all participants in the Peace Poster Contest
As the Chairperson of the Peace Poster Contest, I am Lion Diane Novis-Zukowski MJF, and would like to stress on the need for children to be given the opportunity to express themselves freely through art in the propagating for peace in the society and the nation as a whole.
That notwithstanding, the International Day of Peace celebration is timely, apt and totally sync with what the Lions Clubs seeks to achieve with its contest by harnessing the talents of children to live harmoniously among themselves and become agents of peace in their various communities.
This year’s theme for the Peace Poster Contest which is ‘Lead With Compassion” works perfectly with the theme for International Peace Day, and in a world where there are so much fight, racial comments in every aspect of our lives ranging from politics, sports, entertainment, among others, it was imperative that we make our voices heard in curbing such a global canker and it was a better way to do it through these children who are willing to lead this campaign through arts.
The Peace Poster Contest needs collaborations from individuals and corporate institutions to embark on initiatives at schools and community and for more information about the contest, individuals could visit and know more about Peace Poster Contest on social media pages at district418Peacepostercontest on Facebook, Tiktok, Instagram, and Youtube.
End Racism. Build Peace (A Global Perspective on the theme)
It is very prudent to always underscore on the need to stop racism at all levels and foster peace and harmony in our various society because it serves a catalyst for mankind’s survival.
However, racism is not a healthy tool for restructuring the world’s aim of building global peace and integrating harmony among all levels of individuals irrespective of skin colour, religion, language among other discriminatory acts.
One cannot choose to play gimmicks with the peace and stability enjoyed at home, in a community and country as a whole, because peace cannot be compromised for anything and can never be replaced.
It is very disturbing there are still prevalence of racism in some parts of our communities and in our current dispensation, we need to tackle racism by ending this menace to stop and build peace as a yardstick for economic development.
A peaceful economy is considered to be a thriving economy and John Lewis statement that says “Not one of us can rest, be happy, be at home, be at peace with ourselves until we end hatred and division”, must be a foundation for ending racism because the act has tendencies to generate war and the genocide issue in Rwanda could be a case of study in this scenario.
Connecting Peace in a multi-sectoral approach and dealing with racism
As one people, we should not temper the peace we enjoy in a nation and also never underestimate the power and essence of bilateral relations among nations because peace is a symbol of economic power that reflects the beauty of an economy.
Racism must be dealt with by ending the menace in order to create an enabling environment for a harmonious coexistence without fear and it all depends on how we relate with each other in society by accepting all persons of skin colour, religion among others.
Peace starts at home and everyone must be involved in ensuring peace, hence, children, parents, religious leaders, political actors among others must contribute their quota in ensuring in building peace in the community and nation as a whole.
Statistics gathered in March 2022 by a Diversity Council Report connotes that 43 per cent of non-white employees commonly experience racism at work, while only 18 per cent of “racially privileged” workers reported racism as a problem.
This not only highlights how widespread racism remains but how often dismissed by those benefiting from another privilege.
Interventions to end racism and building a long-lasting peace
We can collectively end racism by constantly condemning the act and the woes it is associated with, hence it poses a dangerous risk of putting individuals, families, communities and nations in disarray.
Every skin colour is precious and valuable and we must understand diversities of culture and religion to enable a peaceful coexistence devoid of racism at all levels.
Education and awareness creation about the canker must be intensified at all levels at various institutions include school, faith-based organisations and at national levels to enhance civic education on the issue of racism.
It is time we all consider ourselves as one people and fight towards achieving one agenda which is an ultimate peace that cannot be taken for granted regardless of political affiliations, religion and skin colour.
Lion Emmanuel Kojo Gyimah, District Governor of District 418,
Lion Diane Novis-Zukowski, Chairperson of the Peace Poster Contest,
And Committee Members of Peace Poster Contest.