GlobalPhilly 2013 will present “Advocacy,” as one of seven dimensions that make the Philadelphia region global (the others being Arts, Commerce, Cuisine, Education, Heritage, and Sports). This category of the exposition is reserved for GP13 events that focus on promoting dialogue about a host of issues affecting humanity worldwide, and how Philadelphians fit into the international discourse.
Peace Day is a concept that was established by the United Nations with the purpose to uplift the idea of peace at the international level, but also at the levels of community and the individual.
Lisa Parker, co-founder and coordinator for Peace Day Philly, learned about Peace Day on September 21, 2009. In 2011 she met with individuals and others from the United Nations Association of Greater Philadelphia about how such a day would benefit Philadelphia and the region.
“Everyone was really excited and thought it was a great concept, and then we met together during the spring and chose our name, Peace Day Philly, and we just moved from there,” Parker said. “I basically became Coordinator of the initiative. It really pushed my limits, but it was something I felt like was important to do.”
Peace Day Philly allows people locally to “plug in to a globally observed day of peace in a way that is most meaningful to them,” Parker added.
“It’s a day to set our mindfulness on peace on a personal level, as well as a community and global awareness level,” Parker said. “It allows people different access points to thinking about peace, but most importantly recommitting to the importance of peace in our lives.”
Peace Day is also a day to be recognized as a day of global ceasefire, which was part of the unanimous 2001 United Nations Resolution.
Parker noted that actual ceasefires have been negotiated in different parts of the world, including Afghanistan, which has allowed a number of different humanitarian efforts to take place on September 21.
“The ceasefire concept is something that can be taken to the community and even the individual level,” Parker said. “So there are many types of weapons, not just bombs and guns, but our words, our intentions and behavior, so we can look at ‘ceasefire’ at a very personal level and also at a community level. But our primary focus is on positive peace rather than reducing something negative – actions that involve peacebuilding and lifting up the principle and practice of peace.”