An international Photo Contest on peacemaking, cosponsored by International Alliance for pace and development, was held on 27 October 2019 under the theme “PEACEMAKERS: through Your World I see mine”. Organized by Entrepreneurship and Social Economy Group (EKO), the goal of this initiative was to tackle xenophobia and promote peace and unity among people of all faith traditions.
The event witnessed heavy turnout from various nationalities. Around 50 young people participated in this event from Italy, Spain, Greece, Croatia, Romania, Lithuania and Bulgaria, and they shared experience and presented their stories on building peace. All participants emphasized the importance of the role of youths, women and civil society organizations in spreading the culture of peace among citizens and end war all over the world.
Kitty Panourgia, the President of EKO delivered her opening speech declaring that We are amazed by young people’s inspiration when they deal with important issues which affect their lives. The exhibition was the outcome and the last phase of a photo contest open to all youngsters all over the globe with the objective to raise awareness on the need to take action for the promotion of peace worldwide.
Youngsters were invited to capture a photo with the message of peace that they wanted to send to the world. The organizers (IAPD and EKO) were proud of the result. Visitors went around the exhibition admiring and discussing, creating mottos and short stories about the content of the photos and opening up to new ideas about what action to take to make the world better.
This was the first attempt to promote peace and raise awareness through art. International Alliance states that it will continue to work hard towards this direction. The same photos will be exposed in Geneva in front of the broken Chair in a peaceful intervention of IAPD and EKO in front of the United Nations. EKO`s stated objective is to “contribute to the creation of an inclusive society, free from prejudice and discrimination, which will be in the position to develop and grow sustainable living environment”. Particularly within Greece, its major concerns refer to the challenge of: (1) youth unemployment and economic obstacles as a result of the crisis and (2) the xenophobic attitudes, cultural intolerance and exclusion created by the migration wave, as well as (3) environmental issues.
This event comes into the framework of International Peace for Alliance and Development work which supports the activities to make peace more wide-speared and to mobilize youth efforts and build their capacities to enable dialogue among each other’s and policy makers around the world.