This November, the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) introduced its Positive Peace framework at the Russian Youth Forum, supported by Multicultural NSW and the Russian Embassy in Australia.
Speakers at the event represented a variety of areas including culture, business, education, politics, and offered valuable perspectives on how to identify appropriate and available community resources both for community-building purposes and for personal and professional development. The interactive program design invited participants to take part in activities, network with the event speakers and connect with like-minded participants.
The keynote presentation by Charles Allen, IEP Director of Partnerships, described Positive Peace as the optimal environment under which human potential can flourish, and highlighted the importance of building strong communities.
Guests were invited to engage in an activity called the ‘Yarn Game’ where the interlinkages of the eight Pillars of Positive Peace were highlighted, and the importance of investing in each pillar was stressed. The visual learning moment materialised when participants of selected Pillars were instructed to let go of their yarn – demonstrating that the weakening of one Pillar threatens the stability of the interconnected nature of all Positive Peace Pillars.
Svitlana Fatiuk, an active IEP Peace Ambassador, introduced her not-for-profit organisation Do What You Can, outlining how volunteering can help you find a job.
Marina Belkina, President of the Russian Australian Representative Council (RARC) and the forum organiser, emphasised RARC’s purpose of “preserving the Russian language and its cultural and historical heritage and living in peace and harmony with the Australian world”. RARC is a membership organisation with members across five Australian states. Marina further explained that events such as the Russian Youth Forum are aimed at facilitating and nourishing community-building processes.
In context of the overarching forum message, Igor N. Arzhaev, the Consul General of the Russian Embassy in Sydney, particularly emphasised the importance of self-realisation along the journey of building and strengthening communities.