Peace by Piece is a nonviolence youth group made up of students ages 17-24. We formed this nonviolent youth group to help fight the problem of violence among our youth in New Orleans on July 25, 2010.
Each of our Peace by Piece youth leaders have participated in violent acts before deciding to adopt a nonviolent lifestyle. Our mission is to train middle and high school aged youth of color on the principles and steps of Kingian Nonviolence so that they can become certified to teach other youth about the importance of nonviolence.
The members of Peace by Piece were trained and certified by the Martin Luther King Center to teach four hours worth of Kingian Nonviolence curriculum to local middle schools and high schools in New Orleans. The student leaders received their certification by completing a week long nonviolence program at the Martin Luther King Center in July 2010, where they passed both verbal and written examinations in order to teach this material to their peers.
We are directly addressing the need for an alternative to violence in our community. Right now we are working with detention students at SciTech Middle School and the “boys to men” program at St. Rita School.
Our Kingian Nonviolence training is facilitated and adapted by our youth using skits, spoken word, songs and dances all based on our nonviolence curriculum. This project will be ongoing until we successfully train over 500 youth or more in Kingian Nonviolence.
We offer three sessions to each group of students that we work with. The training varies in length from forty-five minutes to two hours per session and each session is based on the six steps of nonviolent social change. This is a sequential process of nonviolent conflict-resolution and social change based on Dr. King’s teachings. The youth are responsible for scheduling our training with each school and conducting student evaluations to test the effectiveness of our curriculum among youth participants.
Our hard work has earned us the opportunity to travel to South Africa and represent the state of Louisiana as Young Ambassadors for Nonviolence with the delegation from the United States to South Africa from June 10-21, 2011. This program is led by the King Center and the Building Life Foundations. There are 4 of us in total making this trip.
Peace by Piece Selected to be Ambassadors for Nonviolence
As Young Ambassadors we will gain an understanding of “Pre and Post Apartheid”, South African government, International business and policies as well as Nonviolent Resistant Education. We have an opportunity to travel to Johannesburg, Soweto, Durban and Cape Town South Africa and meet Mahatma Gandhi’s granddaughter, learn the nonviolence teachings of M. L. King, Jr., Arch Bishop Tutu and President Nelson Mandela and so much more. We will then bring back all of this information and apply it to our nonviolence work in New Orleans. Being selected to participate in this program is a great honor.
We are working hard to raise $4,500 a piece to travel to South Africa. A small donation from you can help our group pay for a trip that will change our lives and the lives of our peers in New Orleans. We are asking you to help make our futures brighter by donating today. To donate by mail, send in a money order or personal check to the American Friends Service Committee at 1137 Baronne St., New Orleans LA, 70113. To donate online, click "Donate" on the blog homepage. A donation from you will make a world of difference in our lives.
You can find out more about the South Africa program by visiting www.BLFNVCENTER.com and more about the American Friends Service Committee by visiting www.afsc.org.
Thanks for Your Support,