Created by internationally renowned think-tank the Institute for Economics & Peace, the IEP Ambassador programme provides an opportunity for individuals to expand their skills in the areas of peace research, and learn about investing in the factors that build peace. Heidi Unferdorben, former President of the Rotary Club of Adelaide, and fellow club member Mark Matthews decided their first peace project as Ambassadors would focus on influencing their Rotary community.
The Rotary Club of Adelaide Positive Peace workshop was born from Heidi and Mark’s drive to teach their local community of Rotary members more about the Positive Peace Framework. To do this, they brought IEP facilitators to Adelaide to lead a hands-on Positive Peace workshop geared toward a Rotary audience.
“I am passionate about understanding peace, but how can I clearly explain what peace is and support Rotary members and the wider community to embed the Positive Peace framework into their service projects. I was fortunate enough to learn about IEP and their partnership with Rotary a few years ago, but was aware that not many Rotary members knew about it here in South Adelaide. The partnership is a wonderful gift to Rotary members. It provides us with an evidence-based framework to help achieve a greater impact by establishing longer-term sustainable strategies to improve our service delivery. It provides a roadmap for peace which helps motivate me to achieve goals which will make real changes to positively impact complex systemic issues such as homelessness, mental health and racism.
I wanted to share this information with others, and what better way than to provide an opportunity to Rotary members to have IEP facilitators come to Adelaide and deliver the training. For Rotary to provide this gift of education and empowerment is life changing.” – Heidi Unferdorben
Through interactive activities and participant-led discussions, the group of 16 Rotary members and non-members gained a better understanding of how peace affects their daily lives, as well as how they can use Positive Peace to affect change in their communities. This positive peace workshop was the first of its kind, and the team hopes to inspire other Rotary clubs to take similar action. It benefitted all workshop participants, whether they were or were not a member of the Rotary Club of Adelaide.
I came into this workshop not knowing what to expect as I’m new to the Rotary community, but this was such a great experience to learn about the impacts of peace and how peace can change people’s lives and the community. –Lockie Ryan
IEP’s Positive Peace workshop has changed the way I think and I’m looking forward to approaching all aspects of my life using the eight Pillars. –Rachel Gillespie
The Positive Peace workshop was phenomenal. It changed my outlook towards peace, especially the role of community engagement [to achieve it]. -Rajeev Kamineni
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.
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