We believe no socio-economic developments can take effect if there is war, instability or injustice in a community, society or nation. For all human beings to have a fair chance, for our countries and communities to thrive and to break the cycle of violence so we can all live in peace, we need to educate and empower communities and today’s youth for a better change tomorrow. To quote Nelson Mandela, “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
However, standard education alone is not enough, it must be relevant in addressing the issues we face today as a global society. The weapons being used in conflicts around the world were manufactured by the most educated countries in the world, those who sign agreements to supply these weapons attended some of the best education institutions, commanders ordering their troops to rape women during conflict are educated men. The list goes on and on this basis, we need to transform the way we teach our children. As well as standard education, we should educate children that global issues: using children as child soldiers, gender violence, migration, conflicts and humanitarian crises to name a few, need humans to act human.
Education must be relevant in addressing the big issues we face today as a global society. As an interconnected world, we need to transform the way we think, act and teach. We need to make stronger connections between schools and educating for change. We need to educate the minds of children and youth so they develop strong attitudes against conflict and war; we need educate for a global culture of sustainability for a better quality of life on this planet; we need to educate each other that cultural diversity is a strength and not a means for segregation of society. A society that is aware and understands the conditions leading to violence, are in a better position to prevent violence from happening again in the future; creating conditions for peace and ensuring peace, justice and security for all will create conditions for sustainable living and development which will align with Sustainable Development Gaol 4
to — “ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.”
The Foundation will produce a series of books on peace, justice and security and will provide it for free through partnerships with organisations on the ground and community libraries, to impoverished and displaced children and communities including those affected by war. The foundation will also create regional interactive educational centres around the world – one region at a time – to increase audience engagement, aid discovery, explanation and interpretation of peace, justice and security. These centres will exhibit material on various issues for example: the evolution of international criminal justice from Nuremberg to The Hague; human rights; conflict resolution; cyber safety and security; gender mainstreaming; sustainable living; and localised justice.
The centres will be accessible to schools and the public in the region in an effort to create a stronger link between schools, making both teachers and children aware of issues of concern to humanity and how we can teach children from a very young age about such issues. At the end of a visit to the exhibition, the visitors will have the opportunity to take part in a hypothetical scenario and make a decisions to bring about peaceful resolutions to a problem for their region. The choice is theirs whether to pursue international justice, national or localised justice.