Friday, September 30, 2011

Movement for peace through inspirational cinema

Valencia students form a large peace sign on the "International Day of Peace." (Photo by Don Burlinson / Valencia)
Valencia College participated in a new venture with its support of the Global Peace Film Festival. The uses of movies to spread messages of peace around the world is the goal of the Global Peace Film Festival, an international movement, which premiered in 2003.

Valencia offered a free screening of the Jeremy Gilley film “Peace One Day,” which centers on a hopeful realization of global peace by starting with just one day without conflict. Their efforts were rewarded when the United Nations unanimously adopted the first ever Peace Day on September 21, 2001. 

The actions of Gilley and others are truly inspiring, as they worked against insurmountable odds and tragic events for over nine years to achieve what many say is impossible: a world at peace.

“This is our first year with the Global Peace Film Festival, there has been so much great involvement and positive interest from many students,” said Rachel Allen, Valencia humanities professor and coordinator for the Peace and Justice Initiative.

The film shown “Peace One Day,” is shot in a gritty low-budget documentary style but catches the audiences attention right from the beginning. It focuses on the idea that through the United Nations and international cooperation the world can agree to one day without war and violence, and with the further hope that if one day of peace can be reached than more can follow.

“It was so interesting, and what a great message of everyone working to spread peace around the world,” said Lucymar Carbajal, audience member and second year international affairs student.

“Very eye opening. I didn’t know how much one day of peace could help so many distressed people in the world,” said Nirush Sivarasa, a second year business student.

After seeing this film the message of International Peace Day and the Global Film Festival become clear. The goal of spreading important messages with cinema is not only effective, but perfectly embodied by this event where students watching a free film about world peace and the U.N open their minds to the possibility of planet Earth free from the violence and hatred which feed the destruction of war.

“One ambitions young man was able to do such an incredible thing, and really change the world, I can't wait to talk to my students about this film,” said Penny Villegas, a professor at Valencia for 30 years.

By James Tutten
info@jamestutten.com


East Campus president Ruth Prather at the peace day film screening ( Photo by James Tutten)

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