This article features Rotary District 7610’s Peacebuilding Conference 'Together we build tomorrow's peace'. The conference demonstrated how peace has always been a part of Rotary and Positive Peace provides a framework to help clubs become actionable in their peacebuilding efforts.

Rotary District 7610’s Peacebuilding Conference

Rotary District 7610 is made up of 57 clubs in Northeast Virginia, and this includes the Rotary eClub of Global Peacebuilders.

As a pre-meeting to the 2022 Annual Conference, the Rotary eClub of Global Peacebuilders was invited to design the District 7610 Peacebuilding Conference. Since the club’s mission as a caused-based, online club dedicated to educating about and promoting Positive Peace as a solution to dysfunctional conflict in our local and worldwide communities, they were happy to accept the challenge.

Building on the theme of the D7610 Conference “Together We Build Tomorrow’s Rotary” the Peacebuilding Conference employed the theme Together We Build Tomorrow’s Peace.

After introductory remarks by conference chair PDG Juanita Cawley and welcome by DG Pat Borowski, Zone 33 Director PDG Peter Kyle delivered a comprehensive historical perspective of the length and breadth of peace efforts in Rotary.

A presentation by eClub member and certified Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) Ambassador Bill Cawley provided attendees information about the IEP and our various tools for gauging Positive Peace and its Pillars of Positive Peace model for sustaining peace in societies and organizations when faced with systematic conflict or disruptions.

Positive Peace, Peace Projects, and Club Peacebuilding by club member and current IEP Ambassador cohort Laurie Menzel was the topic of the next presentation demonstrating how clubs could become actionable in their peacebuilding efforts. After which Juanita Cawley presented the criteria for a re-start of the district Peacebuilder club recognition.

The eClub of Global Peacebuilders also hosted an information table at the House of Friendship to further discuss Positive Peace. To help in Rotary’s humanitarian aid endeavour to the besieged people of Ukraine, PDG Juanita Cawley gave sunflower (symbol of Ukraine) garden flags to those who made donations to the effort. By Saturday afternoon, more than $5000.00 was raised for Ukraine. Juanita then had to “work the phones” to Evanston to make sure all funds were received by RI by the midnight deadline for the special Ukraine humanitarian aid relief fund.

Read the original article by club Secretary Bill Cawley here: Club news – Rotary e-Club of Global Peacebuilders

According to Bill, the District 7610 Peacebuilding Conference sought to demonstrate how peace has always been a part of Rotary using the understanding that peace is given different definitions depending on the context. However, Positive Peace is a way to understand peace while taking action to attain it.

Become a Global Peacebuilder

Incorporating the Positive Peace Framework into their district conference is one of many ways that Rotary District 7610 leverages IEP research.

The club’s mission is “Embodying the Object of Rotary, embracing diversity, and creating bonds of friendship, we will strive to foster Positive Peace globally and within our communities, through creative technologies, communication, education, fellowship, and hands-on service projects, framing Positive Peace as the centre of their club endeavours.”

With the knowledge to identify the 8 Pillars of Peace, service projects transform into initiatives that build peace.

On their website, they feature Club Member Highlights comprised of members who completed the Positive Peace Academy and/or are certified as Peace Ambassadors. The Rotary eClub of Global Peacebuilders aims to have every member become a certified Ambassador.

Bill has recently been appointed as the Peacebuilder chair for District 7610. In this role, he has made significant strides toward engraining Positive Peace into the district’s work. He is currently in the process of establishing Peacebuilder Advocates who will be tasked with assisting clubs in forming their own Peacebuilding committees. Each Peacebuilding Advocate will gain a deeper understanding of IEP research, such as the difference between Negative Peace and Positive Peace and how to activate Positive Peace in their service projects, under Bill’s guidance.

Learn more about the Rotary eClub of Global Peacebuilders in this article by Juanita Cawley: An online club dedicated to peacebuilding

Rotary-IEP Partnership

Launched in 2017, the Rotary-Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP) Partnership is one of Rotary’s strategic partnerships. Rotary’s key strength is the ability to convene and mobilize locally – Rotary members are experts at this. IEPs key strength is its decade long data driven peace research, which is being used to teach Rotary members to apply new peacebuilding methods to their communities while addressing underlying causes of conflicts.

The Rotary-IEP Partnership – through IEP’s Pillars of Positive Peace framework – provides a unique structure to:

  • View peace as a process and a system versus a product or result
  • Build capacity in how Rotary members think about peace and development
  • Provide educational resources to move initiatives forward



Alyssa Alvarez

Partnerships Intern at IEP and recent Pace University graduate

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