The Call To Global Healing: A global initiative to implement the URI Purpose
For the occasion of World Environment Day (June 5th), I asked Dave Randle to send an update on the status of the Call to Global Healing. While the Call is rooted in environmental consciousness, you will find that it has moved well beyond and has led the Utah URI Cooperation Circle into the heart of conflict in working to provide aid and support to people in need.
As many know the URI held its first ever Regional Summit in the Olympic Village in Salt Lake City.?The event was an official program of the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympic Games.
It was at this event that the vision for the Olympic Peace Pole project was announced and the first Olympic Peace Pole dedicated as part of the URI North American Summit.
The Olympic Peace Pole project grew to 168 special Olympic peace poles (2 for every nation at the Olympic Games). It was an exciting time during the Salt Lake Winter Olympic Games as Bishop William Swing and Rev. Charles Gibbs provided the initial training to create the Olympic Interfaith Committee and the Utah URI CC worked with Deborah Moldow and Monica Willard of the U.N. CC to bring the custom made peace poles to the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.
As positive receptivity came from the two interfaith services, and dedication by the Mayor of Salt Lake of the Olympic poles at City Hall. Once dedicated the poles were seen by thousands through events such as the Beach Boys performing to thousands of people interspersed among the peace poles, many cultural events, and watching the Olympic torch bearer run through the peace pole path with the Olympic flame. Throughout the project an awareness developed that URI had much to say to the world. It was clear through these events that URI had a message to share regarding its purpose of daily interfaith cooperation, ending religiously motivated violence, and creating cultures of peace, justice and healing the Earth for all living beings.
So the question raised was how could this good spirit of the Olympic peace pole project be taken to the first ever URI Global Assembly in Rio de Janeiro.
The answer was to propose a Global Initiative titled the Call to Global Healing. After several drafts from members of the Utah URI cc and the U.N. URI cc as well as input from other URI members around the globe, and the U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP), a document was completed to present to the first ever URI Global Assembly.
In August 2002, with 400 plus participants from 37 countries and 50 faith traditions in attendance the Call to Global Healing was endorsed unanimously by the URI Global Assembly, commended by Adnan Amin the director of UNEP at the U.N. Headquarters in NY, and sent to Johannesburg, South Africa as part of the World Summit on Sustainable Development.
The following January Bishop William Swing, founder of the URI, Dr. Noel Brown and Pierre Quiblier of UNEP, Dr. David Randle and other Utah URI members, a representative of the U.N. URI, and others from interfaith, environmental, business, and government organizations met in Snowbird, Utah to develop an implementation plan for the Call to Global Healing.
Since then the WHALE Center (the 501(c) 3 organization that administers Utah URI) has served as the administrative organization for the Global Healing Initiative that has now been joined by over 35 affiliate organizations, thousands of individuals, and businesses who make contributions on its Store page.
Dr. David W. Randle and Dr. Noel Brown have served as facilitators for this initiative as it continues to evolve.
Currently URI members have several ways to participate in the Call to Global Healing. Some of these opportunities include:
- Learning about Global Healing. The main site includes a global healing presentation giving an overview of critical issues related to global healing and a link to the Call to Global Healing text.
- Keeping informed. On the Global Healing Main site persons can find the latest UNEP press release. UNEP press releases provide the news on what is happening internationally with issues related to sustainability. In addition there is a link to new global healing updates and the monthly Global Healing News letter.
- International Dialogue. One of the purposes of URI is to promote daily interfaith cooperation. On the Global Healing mainsite people have the opportunity to join the Care2 Global Healing discussion group that now includes almost 400 people from 45 states and 30 nations who have daily conversations re: Global Healing.
- Global Healing Youth Page. A special site to provide resources and organizational links for youth wanting to be involved in Global Healing.
- An opportunity to be involved in service projects. Currently URI members can learn about the Southern Sudan Education project and opportunities for individuals and URI ccís to help bring education to Southern Sudan. Plans are now underway to add additional project opportunities on this site through cooperative URI projects in Malawi, Uganda, and South Africa.
- These are opportunities to promote daily interfaith cooperation and create cultures of peace, justice and healing the Earth. (Go to Global Healing mainsite http://www.globalhealing.net and click on the Southern Sudan Education Project)
- The Global Healing Community Page is designed for persons to post thoughts, share information, and offer polls related to global healing issues. By signing up to be a global healing member persons are also included in e-alerts to issues related to global healing.
- The Global Healing Partners Page includes links to 35 organizations who are participating in their own way to bring about Global Healing. In addition persons can currently see a video on the Millennium Development Campaign and see the latest conference or program offered by one of the Global Healing partners.
The Global Healing Store page was designed with several things in mind. Key features of this page include:
- Music video of the month offered by artists to share their music promoting themes of global healing.
- Convenient links to the BBC news by each region of the world, a good way to keep informed on current issues in regions of the world one is interested in.
- Products and Services including unique stores such as The Wild Divine which offers a biofeedback computer game with the goal of teaching compassion, the Peace Company and the World Peace Prayer Society Gift shop offering resources and gifts supporting a culture of peace, Green Mountain Coffee just rated #2 Corporation out of 1000 for being most socially responsible, and many more.
- Global Healing stores also offer commissions to pay for the administrative costs for the Global Healing website. A percentage of the Commissions also go to support URI Global and the URI Africa Development fund. The idea is that if enough persons utilize the global healing store for online shopping both better choices in products and services are made and because administrative costs are paid for 100% of donations to service projects such as the Southern Sudan Education project go to that project and not to overhead or website fees.
- The Opportunity to Donate to Global Healing is also on the site with donations strengthening this program and its outreach.
Please visit the Global Healing site and find ways you can support global healing as a way of participating in the implementation of the URI purpose.
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