The Schools’ International Peace Quilt Project was created as a celebration of the London Olympics in 2012. From humble beginnings schools were invited from all over the world to participate.
The idea was that one school from all Olympic participating countries would submit an A4 size drawing of what Peace meant to children and young people. Once the designs were received, they were then transferred onto material and all joined together to form a Schools’ International Quilt of world unity. This work took place via the wonderful quilters of Guisborough, UK and the Abraham Moss Community School in Manchester, the school representing the United Kingdom. With the International School of Copenhagen, Denmark being the first school to accept our invitation, the Summit College of South Africa number 50 and St. Anne’s Paraguay no. 100, the project went on to include 203 countries of the world. An amazing achievement! The first design arrived from Brunei a country known as the ‘abode of peace’. What a lovely message of peace and harmonious collaboration this project turned out to be.
With half the quilt completed by September 2011, it then found its way to Switzerland to be exhibited at the One Young World Summit held in Switzerland that month. The quilt was displayed nationally all through 2012 eventually finding its way to the Stone Space Gallery in Leytonstone London, right next to the Olympic stadium. The Quilt brought tears to many as the profound message for peace from children was felt in the hearts of all. Many creative designs were received, Afghanistan was very moving as was Slovenia; New Zealand was an artistic gem and the impossibility of having young people of North Korea represented actually became possible. The quilt received awards and became a part of the long forgotten Olympic Truce and has since been displayed in many schools across the world.
For RIO 2016 we again invited schools, teachers and their students to once more express their message of peace to the world. In a time when Universal Peace has never been so important, the new 2016 Peace Quilt, the Sharnbrook Upper School (UK) Peace Patch UK 2016 project and our new ‘Stride for Truce’ event helped to further promote the OLYMPIC TRUCE which dates back to the original games in the 9th Century BC.
For TOKYO 2020 we are inviting schools once more to participate in the “Omotenashi” Schools Project. For students to research the word Omotenashi and then to create their understanding in art form. We are now accepting work for this project. Please send submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 2012 Schools’ International Peace Quilt project will forever live on as a lasting legacy in the form of the colourful ‘Children’s Book of Peace’ in which all the drawings have been published with added information.
A massive thank you to so many teachers and their wonderful students for being an amazing part of this creative project, without you all this simple but ambitious idea would never have formed from an acorn into an oak! We believe Peace is possible, do you?
Two of the sections when they were on display in the Guisborough Library, Guisborough UK in January 2012
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