Photo by UK.WILPF via Flickr Creative Commons

WILPF – November 2012

WILPF BUSINESS MEETING

November 8, 7 p.m. at the Center for Nonviolence, 1584 N. Van Ness (2nd Thursday of most months; no December business meeting). This meeting is open to all members.

WOMEN IN BLACK

November 7, noon to 1 p.m. at the Fresno County Courthouse (first Wednesday of each month; come on the month in which your birthday falls!). Wear black, bring a sign if you wish and stand in silence for peace.

ON KFCF 88.1 FM (listener-supported free speech radio for central California)

November 28 (4th Wednesday of each month). Jean Hays conducts outstanding interviews on subjects involving WILPF interests and activities on Stir It Up. Let Jean know if you have ideas for a program. Listen!

November 6, 13, 20 & 27, 9 p.m. (every Tuesday). WILPF member Dr. Jean Kennedy’s Keeping It Real.

RAGING GRANNIES

Meetings on selected Mondays at 7 p.m. Call Ellie at 229-9807 for details.

WILPF PEACE CRAFT FAIRE

Put a star on your calendar for SATURDAY, DECEMBER l. That’s the date of the EXCITING, STUPENDOUS, GLORIOUS , NOT TO BE MISSED WILPF PEACE COMMUNITY CRAFT FAIR. There will be incredible original work by local artists and crafts people—music all day, children’s activities, the most delicious soup, bread and desserts, silent auction and raffle, information and sale of peace goods from Fresno Peace and Justice organizations, a chance to see all the wonderful friends you haven’t seen for ages—at least since last year,

SUPPORT OUR LOCAL ARTISTS INSTEAD OF CORPORATE INDUSTRIES

First Congregational Church of Fresno (The Big Red Church) corner of Van Ness and Yale (across from Fresno High School) 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

We need your help to make this a beautiful event. VOLUNTEERS to help with setup, takedown, food, auction and raffle items, kitchen, serving, staffing tables and activities. Consider what you are good at and what you like to do. Call Ellie (229-9807).

NEWS FROM MEGHAN WALSH

Meghan Walsh has completed her three month internship at the WILPF International office in Geneva, Switzerland. She covered the UN Human Rights Council as well as the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and gained first hand experience on how WILPF interacts with the UN.

She also did communications work and assisted with WILPF’s Middle East North Africa program.

Meghan is now being sent to Beirut, Lebanon, to work with the WILPF section there for six weeks. While there, she will help with planning events for the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign, and also with setting up a website and communications strategy for the Lebanese section.

International WILPF wants to increase communication between the Geneva office and national sections so that there is more knowledge and best practices shared.

Check out the new international WILPF website at www.wilpfinternational.org 

“BREAKING BARRIERS” PEACEBUILDERS’ CONFERENCE

Maureen Keown-Walsh recently attended “Breaking Barriers,” an international conference of peacebuilders held at USD’s Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice. Women from 43 countries participated in a three-day conference focusing on what it will take to achieve security, justice and peace especially, with regards to women.

In 2013 the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women will be focused on the violations of human rights that affect women in every country. This conference, in working sessions, prepared recommendations relevant to the U.N., states, international organizations and peacebuilders to promote awareness and movement needed to end violence and discriminatory practices against women, as well as strategies to include women in policy making and especially in the forming of new democracies. Women from all over the world joined together to tell their stories relating to such issues.

Madeleine Rees, a lawyer, former U.N. officer for the High Commissioner for Human Rights, gender expert and head of the U.N. office for human rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1998, and now the secretary general of WILPF, gave the keynote closing address. As well as addressing issues of gender violence and human trafficking, Ms. Rees focused on the different experiences of men and women, particularly in post-conflict situations.

UGANDA UPDATE FROM KYLA MITCHELL

WILPF member Gail Mitchell’s daughter, Kyla Mitchell, has returned from her trip to northern Uganda and is now busy finding ways to help the friends she made there. It is an interesting thing to teach someone to fish rather than just give them fish! Among her efforts, she has raised and sent money for rent and several goats to breed for a hard-working single mother with six children (Graty took in her sister’s children when she passed away). She has also raised money to help two young men, Okello Isaac and Okema Micheal, pay for school fees (and one bike!). Kyla is looking forward to her next trip to Uganda and welcomes anyones’ interest in volunteering for Aid Africa as well as suggestions and donations. For more information, please visit www.ugandatrip2012.weebly.com (website needs updating but has some great pictures).

“THE INVISIBLE WAR” SUPPORT REQUESTED

Mary Husein has requested assistance from WILPF and other community groups to enable her to bring the film “The Invisible War” and the filmmaker Kirby Dick to the CineCulture series at Fresno State, probably in March for Women’s Herstory Month. This is an important film that documents the widespread problem of violence against women within our military system. According to the film’s website, a woman serving in a combat zone is more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than she is to be killed by enemy fire.

At our October meeting WILPF voted to contribute $200 from our group’s funds and to challenge our membership to add their support to this important effort. If you can help, make your check out to WILPF, with Invisible War in the memo space, and mail it to our P.O Box 5114, Fresno, CA 93755. Treasurer Meta Schettler will collect the funds and pass them on to Mary Husain at CineCulture.

More information is available at the film’s website, invisiblewarmovie.com.

  • The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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