A farewell message from Tom, Head of International Programmes

Even as I leave Peace Direct, I will always be a part of the Peace Direct family and I hope that family one day becomes a movement, a truly globalised movement that links the east and the west, the north and the south; linking people together who believe the same thing – that if we all start to see peace as possible, it will be.

 

After eight incredibly inspiring and rewarding years, I have decided to leave Peace Direct.

During my time at Peace Direct I have consistently seen the terrible consequences of war, devastating entire societies and often waged for the selfish gain of a few. And too often, it seems, the world is too easily able to ignore atrocities and the unimaginable suffering of so many. In that sense, I have spent many years witnessing the worst of humanity.

 When I look at my time at Peace Direct, it is the best of humanity that defines it 

Yet, when I look at my time at Peace Direct, it is not the worst of humanity that defines it, but the best of humanity. It is defined by all of the courageous local peacebuilders that we have worked with, risking their lives for something better for their communities.

It is defined by tolerance, acceptance and a tireless commitment to making the world a better place. An incredible belief that it is everyone’s duty to help others and that the senselessness of war can be overcome, one person at a time.

Of course, it has seemed overwhelming at times and the work of Peace Direct alone will not end the wars in the world. But what Peace Direct and its partners demonstrate, is the strength that comes when local peacebuilders are truly able to lead and what can be achieved when the international community and those local peacebuilders combine their efforts in equal partnership.

It is to Peace Direct’s credit that it has always had a self-awareness; always questioning how and where it can add value and, importantly, understanding where it cannot. This has fostered a genuine respect from partners, a respect that is deeply reciprocated.

Even as I leave Peace Direct, I will always be a part of the Peace Direct family and I hope that family one day becomes a movement, a truly globalised movement that links the east and the west, the north and the south; linking people together who believe the same thing – that if we all start to see peace as possible, it will be.

If we all start to see peace as possible, it will be

With the current shake-up of the world order, the rise of extremism in all corners of the planet and tolerance, respect and humanity itself challenged by all sides, we must all take heed of Peace Direct’s partners and embody their sense of duty and activism.

We must not take for granted the peace that does exist and we must all come forward to play our role in these worrying times. For no matter where we live, in today’s world, we are all local peacebuilders now.

Related content

War Stories. Peace Stories: a photo story

On 11th April 2017, Peace Direct was delighted to partner with Humanity United, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Compton Foundation, and others for the War Stories Peace Stories Symposium: a day of intense and inspiring discussion on the power of stories to end wars and bring about peace. We share some photos. Read more »

‘A Model for Truth and Reconciliation’: Reflections upon the Rwandan Genocide

This week marks the 24th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide. At this time of remembrance, we reflect upon the legacy of the tragedy, and share our thoughts on the typically understated role of local agency in the Republic of Rwanda's remarkable post-conflict transformation. Read more »

March for Our Lives: Taking a stand for a more peaceful world

On March 24th, 2018, Peace Direct joined the March for Our Lives demonstration in Washington, DC calling for common-sense gun reform in the aftermath of the Marjory Stone Douglas school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Peace Direct's Administrative and Development Assistant Christine Trillana shares her experience. Read more »

Comments

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *