Peace Camp is a day camp and peace educational program housed in the MSCU Centre for Peace Advancement at Conrad Grebel University College that brings youth ages 11-14 in the Waterloo region community together to share stories and learn from peace leaders of various cultural backgrounds, faiths, and orientations.
Directed by current University of Waterloo Peace and Conflict Studies students and alumni, the Peace Camp team just wrapped another successful workshop season, facilitating 101 peace education presentations at 30 different schools across the region, reaching an estimated 3235 youth in Grades 3 to 8.
Activities ranged from random acts of kindness to team building events that challenged participants to complete a bridge building task without using verbal communication. Junior students investigated the impact our words have on the feelings of those who hear them, while intermediate students tried their hand at conflict analysis to understand the root causes of problems and create solutions that turn into peace building opportunities.
Working closely with University of Waterloo student facilitators, youth in our community engaged in self-reflection, expressing their depth of understanding for peace and compassion. Regional teachers and educators were impressed with the level of participation from students, and encouraged the sharing of community-driven knowledge. By creating opportunities to explore ideas of social justice and peace building, the sessions helped empower local students to use their abilities to have a positive impact, giving students the tools to become peace builders in their own communities.
Registration is still open for this summer’s Peace Camp running August 8-12. Located on the University of Waterloo campus at Conrad Grebel University College, this summer’s theme is Peace in Action, with the goal of showing campers that whatever their interests may be, they can always pursue peace.