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Alumni Profiles Articles

CSOP Participant Profile – Marissa Rykiss

I’m really grateful … It was a very inspiring time in my life,’ says Marissa Rykiss

For Marissa Rykiss, attending the Canadian School of Peacebuilding was nothing short of life changing.

The 22-year-old Winnipegger enrolled in the course “Women and Peacebuilding” at the 2012 CSOP as part of a B.A. program in Conflict Resolution Studies at Menno Simons College.

Inspired by her mother, who practices collaborative law, Rykiss wanted to pursue a career as an immigration lawyer in order to make a difference in the world by helping vulnerable people.

After finishing the course, Rykiss realized she wanted to help people in a different way. Now, she plans to pursue a Master of Arts degree in Family Therapy.

First though, Rykiss is becoming a certified yoga instructor. She wants to teach yoga and potentially open her own studio.

Rykiss says her interest in teaching yoga stems from her desire to help people develop their self care so that they can be better people and lead more compassionate, empathetic lives.

“After taking [the CSOP] course, I realized there’s so many other ways I can help people, and I don’t necessarily need to have a title like lawyer to do that,” she says. “My happiness, and the happiness of others, is more important to me than having a title like that.”

Ouyporn Khuankaew, a Buddhist feminist peace trainer from Thailand, and Anna Snyder, associate professor of conflict resolution studies at Menno Simons College, taught the course.

Rykiss says it was the way the course was taught that impacted her so greatly.

“Ouyporn had a non-traditional way of teaching where she offered guided meditation at the beginning of each day, and it just allowed us to become a bit more mindful while we were present in the class,” Rykiss says. “She is one of the most inspiring and engaging women I’ve ever met.”

When the course ended, it was emotional for Rykiss.

“I cried on the last day and was so happy that I decided to participate in that particular course,” she says. “It felt like it was meant to be. It made me ask myself why I need to be pursuing something (a career in law) that isn’t consistent with who I am, and helped me understand that where I need to be is in a more transformative pathway—helping people who can’t help themselves get to a place of awareness and mindfulness.

“It wasn’t intended in the curriculum, but that’s just what I got out of it. A lot of people who participated were put off originally by this new way of thinking, but by the end, everyone there had experienced profound change in the way they thought about learning.”

Rykiss’s experience in the course led her to pursue a practicum placement in Thailand with International Women’s Partnership for Peace and Justice (IWP), an organization Khuankaew co-founded.

Rykiss’s work in Thailand included helping with a weeklong workshop for women that IWP organized. Each day began with yoga. While Rykiss had practiced yoga before, it was during this week that she came to fully appreciate the healing nature of yoga therapy.

“I realized … how important it is for people to learn how to be better to themselves, to treat themselves better and come back to themselves through yoga and meditation,” she says.

The practicum and change in career direction would not have happened without Rykiss’s transformative experience at the CSOP.

“I’m really grateful that I was able to take a course where everything could be condensed into five days,” she says. “There are such a variety of courses [at CSOP], and [the organizers] go out of their way to find people to teach the courses who have first-hand experience with the material.

“It was a very inspiring time in my life.”

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Canadian School of Peacebuilding – Participant Reflections

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CSOP announces international mix of instructors for 2014

Eight renowned peacekeeping instructors highlight peacebuilding program’s sixth year

Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP), an annual summer peace and justice program of Canadian Mennonite University (CMU), hosts eight renowned instructors from around the world as faculty for its 2014 school. Each instructor will teach a 5-day intensive course related to peace, justice, and conflict resolution during one of CSOP’s two sessions.

CSOP-banner-2014

 “This is CSOP’s sixth year and the program’s growing reputation, both locally and globally, has helped us recruit spectacular instructors,” says CSOP Co-Director Valerie Smith. “Similarly, CSOP has attracts participants coming from a wide diversity of cultures, professions and faith backgrounds every year. The positive impact resulting from the learning, collaboration, and interaction of our instructors and students is remarkable and encouraging. All leave the program better equipped with peacebuilding skills that can be used in the workplace, at home or in their communities.”

“We’re always amazed by our students and how the experiences they bring shape the program. They arrive ready to engage with one another. It’s incredible to see the depth of their conversations by the end of a week together,” says CSOP Co-Director Jarem Sawatzky. “Combine these eager learners and contributors with the quality and diversity of the instructors and you have the foundation for life-changing growth and development. CSOP is plugged into an ever-growing network of peacebuilders and that’s exciting.”

CSOP’s first session runs from June 16-20 and features three courses: “Peace Skills Practice,” led by Natasha Mohammed; “Exploring Indigenous Justice and Healing,” by Rupert Ross”; and “Food, Farming and Faith: Living in God’s Creation,” by Norman Wirzba.

Courses in the second session, June 23-27, feature the following: “Restorative Justice with Youth and Schools,” led by Alana Abramson and John R. Weins; “Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience,” led by Elaine Zook Barge; “De-Colonial Theology: Thought and Practice,” by Terry LeBlanc; and “Arts Approaches to Community-Based Peacebuilding,” by Babu Ayindo.

About the Canadian School of Peacebuilding
CSOP aims to educate on peace and justice issues and encourage discussion in a collaborative environment. The goal is for participants to leave these sessions with a new understanding of emerging ideas in peace studies, encouraged to take these practices into their daily living. In addition to the CSOP summer program, courses are available year-round at Canadian Mennonite University’s Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses.

Through its south Winnipeg Shaftesbury campus and its Menno Simons College campus at The University of Winnipeg, Canadian Mennonite University offers one of the most comprehensive undergraduate programs in peace and conflict studies in the world.

Canadian School of Peacebuilding Instructors, June 2014

aaAlana Abramson holds a Master’s degree in Criminology from Simon Fraser University and is completing her PhD on the topic of transformational learning and restorative justice. Alana has been an energetic practitioner and educator in the field of restorative justice since 1999. Alana has background with crisis intervention as well as extensive practical experience training to facilitate restorative approaches in prison, school, and community settings.  She has been a sessional instructor with Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Douglas College and Simon Fraser University and has worked with various policing agencies to promote more restorative responses for community members including youth and people with disabilities

baBabu Ayindo, back by popular demand, currently functions as an independent consultant in the design and facilitation of conflict resolution and peacebuilding initiatives, processes and interventions; as a researcher and trainer in arts, peace education and development communication; and as a program developer and evaluator with various organizations. He has extensive experience in applying “arts approaches” in peacebuilding in various parts of the world since the mid-1980s when he served as artistic director of Chelepe Arts (Nairobi, Kenya) and later as founding artistic director of Amani People’s Theater (Nairobi, Kenya). Babu has taught at peacebuilding institutes around the world. Babu is a Kenyan involved in the design, facilitation and evaluation of conflict transformation and peacebuilding processes for almost two decades in numerous parts of the world. He has also published several articles on arts, peace, and politics, including “Arts Approaches to Peace: Playing Our Way to Transcendence” published in Peacebuilding in Traumatized Societies.

azbElaine Zook Barge is the Director of STAR: Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience, an integrated training program of the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding. During the 1980s and 1990s she worked in El Salvador, Nicaragua and Guatemala with Mennonite Central Committee. In her work with communities in conflict zones, Elaine experienced firsthand violence, conflict, poverty, and resilience. She facilitates STAR trainings at Eastern Mennonite University, throughout the US, and in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America. She holds an MA in conflict transformation from Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding and a Bachelor of Science in nutrition/community development from Eastern Mennonite University.

tlTerry LeBlanc is Mi’kmaq / Acadian, resides in Alberta, and is in his 41st year of marriage to Bev. He is the father of Jennifer, Jeanine, and Matt. He is the founding Chair and Director of the North American Institute for Indigenous Theological Studies (NAIITS). Terry also teaches at George Fox University and Evangelical Seminary, and Tyndale University College and Seminary. Author of various works, Terry has won several awards for his writing. In June 2010, for his part in the creation of NAIITS, Terry became the 28th recipient of the Dr. E.H. Johnson Memorial Award for Innovation in Mission.

nmNatasha Mohammed has a background in International Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies. In addition to serving as a community counsellor, mediator, group facilitator and Victim Impact Worker, Natasha has taught conflict resolution skills and theory in government, community and university contexts for the past 18 years. She has also worked with participatory processes to create various learning programs, including diversity and youth violence prevention-based curricula.

Natasha has a special interest in conflict and culture. She is a founding member of Winnipeg Mosaic, a collective of local peacemakers who foster understanding of the role of religion and culture in life and conflict. Through her work in the federal Multiculturalism Program she is able to support the voices of both mainstream and marginalized communities in ways that ultimately facilitate their development and inclusion into Canadian society. For Natasha relationship is the key to peace in the world, your community, your family and yourself.

rrRupert Ross, as Assistant Crown Attorney for the District of Kenora for more than 20 years, was responsible for criminal prosecutions on over 20 remote Ojibway and Cree First Nations. Between 1992 and 1995, he was seconded to the federal Aboriginal Justice Directorate where he travelled across Canada examining Aboriginal approaches to justice with special emphasis on healing programs for victims, offenders, families, and communities.He wrote two national best-selling books  about his journey which radically reshaped the field of restorative justice: Dancing with a Ghost and Return to the  Teachings: Exploring Aboriginal Justice. Prior to becoming a lawyer, Rupert worked as a fishing guide in northwestern Ontario, an assistant film editor in Ottawa, a road manager for a Toronto rock band, a bartender in Spain, and a ski instructor in Minaki, Ontario.

jrwJohn R. Wiens recently retired as Dean of Education at the University of Manitoba.  He has strong links to the education community not only in Manitoba, but across Canada. He has worked as a teacher, counsellor, work education coordinator, principal, school superintendent and university lecturer. John is an active educational leader and has served as president of the Manitoba Teacher’s Society, the Canadian Education Association, the Manitoba Research Council, and the Manitoba Educators for Social Responsibility. He also spent a number of years as the chair of the Universities’ Grants Commission and as the director of the Canadian Teachers’ Federation, the Board of Teacher Education and Certification, and the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents. A few of John’s awards and achievements include: the John M. Brown Award for contributions to teacher education (1998), an honourary doctorate from Brandon University (2000), life memberships in the Manitoba Teachers’ Society, the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents, and the Canadian Education Association (2002), and the Manitoba Association of School Trustees President’s Council Award (2007). He was also awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Commemorative Medal (2002) for service in education.

nwNorman Wirzba is Professor of Theology and Ecology at Duke Divinity School and Research Professor in Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment. His academic training is in philosophy and theology combined with his background in farming in southern Alberta has led him to research in agrarian studies and ecology. He teaches and writes at the intersection of these disciplines, and has published numerous books including The Paradise of God: Renewing Religion in an Ecological Age, Living the Sabbath, Food and Faith: A Theology of Eating, and Making Peace with the Land.

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Canadian School of Peacebuilding – Walking with Our Sisters

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Canadian School of Peacebuilding – David Caceras: Peace, Not War

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Articles

CSOP Participant Profile – David Caceres (2013)

by Aaron Epp

‘War is something that no one should live,’ says retired Peruvian colonel.

If anyone knows about the realities of war, it’s David Caceres.

Caceres, who calls Lima, Peru home, was a colonel in the Peruvian army and served his country during the 1980s and 1990s. Witnessing the atrocities of armed conflict during the Cenepa War, a 1995 border dispute between Ecuador and Peru, caused Caceres to reevaluate what he wanted to do with his life.

David Caceres
David Caceres

“War is something that no one should live,” says Caceres, who was in Winnipeg June 17-28, 2013 to study at Canadian Mennonite University’s (CMU) Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP). “We should have to respect everyone’s life.”

After the Cenepa War, Caceres began working for the Peruvian army in a peacekeeping capacity. That led to a job at the United Nations, where Caceres worked for four years as a training officer. In that role, he developed military training materials for the UN’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations.

With a wide range of experiences in managing human resources, mediation, and conflict resolution at the international level, Caceres has facilitated seminars, workshops, courses, and training in Africa, Europe, Asia, America, and Latin America.

Caceres is currently the Lima District Manager for World Mediation Organization, where he consults and trains people in mediation and conflict resolution.

He is also in the process of developing the International Peace Studies Center of Peru  that will help enhance the capabilities of communities and government workers to deal with conflicts in Peru so that they can resolve them peacefully.

He studied at the CSOP in June because he wants to expand his knowledge of conflict resolution.

“If you feel like being a cook, you need to have a lot of recipes,” Caceres says, adding that the CSOP instructors he learned from have given him a variety of different recipes for, or ways to approach, resolving conflicts.

“I’m putting everything in my bag and I believe I’ll use the knowledge and experiences and relationships [I made at the CSOP] so that I can do my job … in the best way.”

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59 Cents Campaign Grows from CSOP

June 30, 2012 – A week ago, a small group of students from Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) and CMU’s Menno Simons College launched a campaign to challenge the federal government’s decision to begin denying supplemental healthcare coverage to refugees on June 30, 2012.

The 59 Cents Campaign for Refugee Healthcare is a politically independent, student-led movement that grew out of a small group assignment in a one week course – “Speaking Out… and Being Heard – Citizen Advocacy” – at CMU’s Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP). Group members Matthew Dueck, Maureen Gathogo (CMU’s Menno Simons College), and Deanna Zantingh were later joined by fellow CMU students Cecilly Hildebrand and Rianna Isaak to help spread the word about the campaign.

“We believe that the recent changes to the Canadian Interim Federal Healthcare Program (IFHP), which supplied refugees with the medical help, are unacceptable,” says project spokesperson Matthew Dueck. “We would like to see this changed, and refugees given the opportunity to receive the healthcare they need.”

“Our assignment was to create an advocacy campaign that could, in theory, be implemented in real life,” says Dueck. “But by the time we were making our class presentation at the end of the week, we realized that there was nothing stopping this from moving beyond the theoretical – and after everything we’d learned about the situation, we were passionate about helping to create change.”

In 2011 alone, Canada opened its doors to 25,000 refugees, offering an opportunity for healing and hope. Many refugees entering the country are leaving traumatic situations, coming to a place where they are operating without support networks or sometimes even a working knowledge of Canada’s official languages.

“Until now, refugees have been entitled to full medical assistance under the Interim Federal Healthcare Program – a $20-million per year program the federal government has cancelled, effective June 30, 2012,” says Dueck.

“$20-million spread across our country’s population works out to only 59 cents per person,” says Dueck. “It makes practical and moral sense to continue this relatively small program that ensures these vulnerable new residents receive help before their treatable illnesses become serious long-term health issues. We recognize that many refugees are unable to speak up on this issue. We’re encouraging all Canadians to lend their voices by sending 59 cents to the Prime Minister, showing our willingness as a country to give our part toward a small but vital program – and hopefully pressure the federal government to reverse this decision.”

“We launched the 59 Cents Campaign on Friday, June 18. And we’ve been overwhelmed by the response so far,” Dueck continues. “People from across the country – including a law professor in Victoria and doctors from all over Canada, as well as regular citizens of all ages – have been encouraging us and getting involved. It really proves the power of a simple idea.”

Dueck credits CMU and the CSOP for helping promote peace and justice. “The CSOP is so diverse,” he says. “It’s really the strength of the program that it brings together people from all walks of life, and from all over the world, to share their experiences and ideas. You realize quickly that the little things we do here can make a big impact all around the world.”

“We are very excited about this campaign,” says Valerie Smith, Co-director of the Canadian School of Peacebuilding at CMU. “We want this to be a place that can bridge thinking with doing, to bring in leaders in peacebuilding from around the world to support those already working in the field and inspire students to get involved. These students are relatively new to peacebuilding, but their time at CMU has really steeped them in ideas of peace and justice – values we promote throughout every course we offer and our community as a whole. We hope that the CSOP will continue to provide this type of experience and inspiration for all those who attend, so they can take what they’ve learned back to their communities and use it to make a real difference.”

The 59 Cents Campaign will continue after the June 30, 2012 deadline, in an effort to have the decision reversed, says Dueck.

Through its Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses, CMU offers one of the world’s largest undergraduate programs in peace and conflict studies.

The Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP), an institute of Canadian Mennonite University, is a learning community of diverse peacebuilders from around the world who come together to learn, network, and engage in peacebuilding. Now in its fourth year, CSOP offers a selection of five-day courses that can be taken for professional or personal development or for academic credit. Visit csop.cmu.ca

A Christian university rooted in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU offers undergraduate degrees in arts and science, business, humanities, music, and social sciences, as well as two graduate degree programs. CMU has over 1,700 students at its Shaftesbury Campus, at Menno Simons College in downtown Winnipeg, and enrolled through its Outtatown discipleship program. CMU is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.

For more information on the 59 Cent Campaign:
For interviews, contact project spokesperson Matthew Dueck at 204-371-9826
Email 59centscampaign@gmail.com
Visit www.59cents.org
View the Campaign’s video on YouTube: http://youtu.be/TQiSe00HOec

Photo of 59 Cent Campaign group, from left:
Maureen Gathogo, Rianna Isaak,
Cecilly Hildebrand, and Matthew Dueck.
(Missing from photo: Deanna Zantingh)

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Canadian School of Peacebuilding Welcomes International Students

Diversity enriches classroom, community experience

CSOP Student Olivier Imbabazi

Since it first launched in June 2009, CMU’s Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP) has welcomed a diverse group of students from across Canada and U.S., and such countries as the Philippines, Palestine, Cameroon, Rwanda, Russia, Switzerland, and Australia.

First-time CSOP student Olivier Imbabazi, founder of the Kenya-based non-profit Hope and Action for Africa (HAFA), travelled from Kenya to CMU to take the Non-Violent Action Strategies for Social Change course in June 2011.

CSOP offers a selection of five-day peacebuilding-related courses over three weeks for professional/personal development or academic credit each June. Courses are open to anyone 21 years or older.

“Our vision is to gather peacebuilders from around the world,” says Valerie Smith, CSOP co-director with Wendy Kroeker. “We want to serve existing networks and organizations working at peacebuilding. When we gather a diverse group of students, it enriches conversations and experiences in the classrooms and connections within the CSOP community.”

Imbabazi learned about the school online through his work with HAFA, which is a sponsor of the CSOP.

“Given that Africa has gone through many violent conflicts and wars, it desperately needs change through non-violent strategies to peacebuilding,” says Imbabazi of his reason for taking the course taught by George Lakey, a renowned professor, author, and peace activist. The ultimate goal of the course was to help participants become more skilled and effective in organizing non-violent actions.

For Imbabazi, who plans to attend CSOP again, this was his first time not only at CMU, but also in Canada. “My experience was wonderful—wonderful class, classmates, professors, and community,” he shares.

“Students, international or local, often talk about their time at CSOP as a significant experience that changes their lives,” says Smith. “And students who come from other countries to Canada for the first time often share about how their stereotypes of Westerners are broken.”

While CSOP welcomes students worldwide, many international students face significant barriers to attending. For example, this year, CSOP received more than 300 applications—the majority of them international—but many were unable to attend due to issues with finances and visas.

“Because international applicants often face financial challenges or are denied visas, it’s always exciting for us when someone is able to come,” says Smith. Imbabazi applied late and was waiting for visa approval the weekend before Lakey’s course started; he arrived a day late, but was still able to soak in the majority of the course.

Back home, Imbabazi will continue working with HAFA, which serves and works with refugee communities and vulnerable groups in Kenya. He plans to initiate a “Sponsor a Child” program and organize more peacebuilding training, especially in communities affected by conflicts and wars.

“We’ll focus on how changes can be made not with guns, but with non-violent actions,” he says.

For information about the 2012 Canadian School of Peacebuilding, including courses, instructors, and banquet details, visit www.cmu.ca/csop later this summer.

Canadian Mennonite University, through Menno Simons College (CMU’s campus at The University of Winnipeg) and through its south Winnipeg Shaftesbury campus, offers one of the most comprehensive undergraduate programs in peace and conflict studies in the world. Located in Manitoba, CMU has over 1,700 students at its two campuses and enrolled through its Outtatown discipleship program. CMU is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.

Written by Carla Lowe for CMU
Photo:  CMU

For CSOP information, contact:
CSOP Co-director Valerie Smith
csop@cmu.ca; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 316
Canadian School of Peacebuilding at CMU
500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2
www.cmu.ca/csop

For CMU information, contact:
Nadine Kampen, CMU Communications & Marketing Director
nkampen@cmu.ca; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2
www.cmu.ca

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Speaker George Lakey Wraps Up CMU’s Third-Annual Canadian School of Peacebuilding

Lakey shares peacebuilding stories at final banquet

Professor, author, and peace activist George Lakey shared his knowledge, experience, and renowned storytelling with the Canadian School of Peacebuilding’s (CSOP) third and final celebration banquet on June 23 for the 2011 series of courses.

CMU’s Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP) offers a selection of five-day peacebuilding courses for personal and professional development or academic credit each June, this year running June 6-24. Each week during CSOP, members of the public join with students and instructors for a lunch banquet to enjoy local food and inspiring speakers.

“This is a time to gather as a community of peacebuilders, to celebrate with great food and to be inspired by the stories of peacebuilders around the world,” says Valerie Smith, CSOP co-director with Jarem Sawatsky. “We want to create an oasis for people to be reenergized and inspired for the work ahead of them.”

For the past two years, the banquets have been built around the theme “Stories of Great Peacebuilders.” Each week, one instructor is invited to tell stories of people they see as great peacebuilders. George Lakey, instructor for the Non-Violent Action Strategies for Social Change course (June 20-24), concluded this series as this week’s banquet speaker.

“George is an excellent storyteller with a long history of studying, teaching, and living as a peacebuilder,” says Smith. “He has a wealth of experience, wisdom, and stories.”

Lakey is a visiting professor and research fellow at Swarthmore College, author of eight books on peace and social change, a known civil rights activist, a world-renowned workshop leader, and founder of the non-profit peace group Training for Change.

Aboriginal educator Stan McKay was featured as guest speaker for the June 9 banquet and Michelle LeBaron of the University of B.C. law faculty shared during the June 16 banquet.

For information about the 2012 Canadian School of Peacebuilding, including courses, instructors, and banquet details, visit www.cmu.ca/csop later this summer.

Canadian Mennonite University, through Menno Simons College (CMU’s campus at The University of Winnipeg) and through its south Winnipeg Shaftesbury campus, offers one of the most comprehensive undergraduate programs in peace and conflict studies in the world. Located in Manitoba, CMU has over 1,700 students at its two campuses and enrolled through its Outtatown discipleship program. CMU is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.

Written by Carla Lowe for CMU
Photo:  CMU

For CSOP information, contact:
CSOP Co-director Valerie Smith
csop@cmu.ca; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 316
Canadian School of Peacebuilding at CMU
500 Shaftesbury Blvd
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2
www.cmu.ca/csop

For CMU information, contact:

Nadine Kampen, CMU Communications & Marketing Director
nkampen@cmu.ca ; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2
www.cmu.ca

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Renowned Peacekeeping Instructors to CSOP 2011

First Session Instructors McKay, Burch Lead Courses June 6 -10, 2011

Excitement is building as Canadian Mennonite University prepares to welcome renowned instructors and dedicated students its third annual Canadian School of Peacebuilding (CSOP) June 6 to 24, 2011.

CSOP instructors bring great depth of experience and personal insights and perspectives to CSOP’s summer program.  Through its intensive courses for professional development and academic credit, students have an opportunity to learn from those with first-hand experience and advanced training.

First session instructors are Stan McKay,  who will address First Nations perspectives on living in covenant, and Mark Burch,  who will focus on living in voluntary simplicity. 

“We are delighted with the line-up of instructors for CSOP 2011,” says CSOP Co-Director Jarem Sawatsky.  “At CSOP, our aim is to create opportunities for people from different backgrounds and perspectives to connect in positive and respectful ways—learning together, supporting each other, and creating networks of engaged peacebuilders.”

“CSOP offers a collaborative learning community for people from all backgrounds and faith traditions,” says Co-director Valerie Smith. “We want participants to feel nurtured and better equipped through experiencing various forms of peace practice and exposure to significant emerging ideas and teachers in the field.”

Canadian Mennonite University, through Menno Simons College (CMU’s campus at The University of Winnipeg) and through its south Winnipeg Shaftesbury campus, offers one of the most comprehensive undergraduate program in peace and conflict studies in the world. Located in Manitoba, CMU has over 1,700 students at its Shaftesbury Campus in Southwest Winnipeg, at Menno Simons College in downtown Winnipeg, and enrolled through its Outtatown discipleship program. CMU is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.

Session I Instructors – June 6-10

Covenants of Peace and Justice with Stan McKay
This course will introduce a Cree Christian perspective on living in covenant relationships. An examination of biblical covenants, historic First Nations treaties, and contemporary struggles for justice will be the focus for exploring the role of peacemakers in a global context. 

Aboriginal educator Rev. Stan McKay, was Canada’s first Aboriginal Moderator of the United Church of Canada (UCC), Canada’s largest Protestant denomination. He sought reconciliation and understanding both within and outside the UCC, and between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples. Stan comes from Fisher River, Manitoba, a Cree First Nation community. He is the former Director of the Dr. Jessie Saulteaux Centre. He received a career National Aboriginal Achievement Award in 1997.

Study of Voluntary Simplicity with Mark Burch
Within International Development Studies, development is increasingly understood as a participatory, deliberate process aimed at enhancing the quality of life for individuals within community. This course examines the concept, theory, and practice of voluntary simplicity as a means of development for individuals seeking alternatives to consumer values and culture.

Author, educator, and group facilitator, Mark Burch has practised simple living since the 1960s and offers workshops and courses on voluntary simplicity. He is a lecturer at UWinnipeg, former director of UWinnipeg’s Campus Sustainability Office, and  co-director of the Simplicity Practice and Resource Centre. He has been a featured guest on CBC-TV Man Alive, and What on Earth?, CBC Radio Ideas, and Vision TV’s The Simple Way, and was a regular radio columnist on Discovering Simplicity for CBC-Winnipeg. Author of four books on voluntary simplicity, Mark’s most recent book is, De-junking: A Tool for Clutterbusting.

Visit www.cmu.ca/csop
For CSOP information, contact:
CSOP Co-director Valerie Smith

csop@cmu.ca
; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 316
CanadianSchool of Peacebuilding at CMU
500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2

 

For CMU information, contact:
Communications & Marketing Director Nadine Kampen

nkampen@cmu.ca
; Tel. 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd.
Winnipeg, MB R3P 2N2