History of The Peace Foundation Part 5

In 2007 the Foundation began a three-year trial in schools of the Canadian programme Roots of Empathy.  Through this very successful programme, children as young as five acquire vital emotional literacy skills and learn how to ‘walk a mile in someone else’s shoes’. It also teaches students about babies’ needs, how to keep them safe and what it is to be a good parent. One of the key lessons is to “Never Shake a Baby”. The programme thus has the potential to break the cycle of intergenerational violence in families. The three-year trial programme involved 60 schools in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. The ENACT: Youth Enabling Action website (www.enact.org.nz) was developed in 2009 to build youth's awareness and engage them on wider issues on peace and conflict resolution.  This was run in the Foundation's Wellington office but was later on continued in the Auckland office.

In 2010, the Peaceful Family Communication programme was developed for parents, teachers and caregivers of young people to develop more love, respect and peace within the family and wider community. It teaches effective communication and conflict resolution skills not only for adults but also for teens who are often faced with challenging family relationship issues. Developed by Andrea and Mike O'Hagan, the programme uses neuro linguistic programme skills and was adopted from Dr Richard Bolstad Transforming Communication programme. The family programme was initially called Cool Schools Parents Programme and Healthy Families Prpgramme to support the parent community of Cool Schools, but it was later on redesigned and branched out to offer the programme to more families and wider community.

In 2010-2012, the Cool Schools Peer Mediation Programme piloted the Maori Conflict Resolution Programme (Kia Tau te Rangimarie) for schools with high Maori student population and full immersion schools. The pilot developed Maori conflict resolution key training resources and trained 3 schools with Jonnie Black as the Maori Trainer and Programme Co-ordinator.

In 2011, the REACT: Responding to Armed Conflict seminar was developed for secondary schools to educate students on the effects of armed conflict and nuclear war, and to engage them to campaign and act on disarmament. This seminar sits in well under the NZ social studies curriculum.