Promoting Peace

Scotland Rotarian among Rotary’s Six Champions of Peace

Scotland Rotarian among Rotary’s Six Champions of Peace

Scottish Rotarian Jean Best will be honoured in Geneva next month as part of the Rotary Day at the United Nations.

Jean, a member of the Rotary Club of Kirkcudbright in Dumfries and Galloway, leads a peace project designed to teach teenagers conflict resolution skills.

These can be used to create peace-related service projects in schools and the local community. She worked with Rotary Peace Fellows at the University of Bradford to create the curriculum, and has worked with Peace Fellows to set up peace hubs in England and Scotland, along with Australia, Mexico and the USA.

The Scot is a mentor at the Cal Policy Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and became a Paul Harris Fellow for her contribution to developing peace strategies.

Jean is one of six Rotarians and Rotary Peace Centre alumni who will be honoured as People of Action: Champions of Peace on November 11th at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

The honourees, who were announced on International Peace Day on September 21st, are all involved in projects which address underlying causes of conflict, including poverty, inequality, ethnic tension, lack of access to education, or unequal distribution of resources.

Jean’s club is based in South East Scotland (District 1020), and they will be doubly represented in the Swiss City next month by Kiran Singh Sirah, who is president of the International Storytelling Centre in Tennessee, USA, which uses storytelling as a path towards building peace.

By coincidence, Kiran is a former District 1020 peace scholar.

Kiran, the son of Ugandan refugees, creating “Telling Stories That Matter”, which is a free guide for educators, peace-builders, students, volunteers and business leaders, and is now used in 18 countries.

The other Champions of Peace are:

  • Ann Frisch (Rotary Club of White Bear Lake, Minnesota, USA)
  • Safina Rahman (Rotary Club of Dhaka Mahangar, Bangladesh)
  • Alejandro Reyes Lozano (Rotary Club of Bogota Capital, Colombia)
  • Taylor (Stevenson) Cass Talbott (Graduate of the Rotary Peace Center at the International Christian University, Tokyo, Japan).

Find out more about the Champions of Peace and Rotary Day at the United Nations.