WFW /UPF Mini Conference January 11 2014

P1120429A WFWP/UPF conference, part of the on-going ‘Educating for Peace’ series on, was held in Toronto on January 11, 2014 on the specific theme, ‘Stable Families Bring Prosperity, Peace and Integrity to the Nation’. It was compromised of 3 panels, with time for questions and answers and was very ably guided by Dr. Armand LaBarge, retired Police Chief of Peel. Rev. Earl Smith of the Church of Scientology offered the Invocation and Dr. Moon Shik Kim, the Canada UPF Chairman, welcoming remarks…P1120440

The first panel’s topic was, ‘Is the family in decline, as values are lost, leading to anarchy and chaos?’ guided by Eveline Stewart of Hamilton WFWP. To begin Nazila Isgandarova looked at the question from a Muslim perspective. Originally from Azerbaijan, Nazila is well aware of the challenges face by the immigrant population and, given that our identities are formed in the family, has seen the results of dysfunctional Muslim families, those which cannot live up to the dictates of the Koran. Thus the Muslim divorce rate is rising in N. America, with all of its resultant problems. Yet still the historical benefits of the Koran’s teaching in controlling and increasingly ending polygamy and creating equality for women must always be remembered.P1120524Nazila was followed by Chelomie Colchrist, a Christian. Chelomie stressed that stable families need both husband and wife modeling  ‘godly principles’ and that children cannot be left to raise themselves. Inspiring the audience that, “We are the change”, Chelomie underscored the power of the family to set the foundation to be passed on to the future.

This theme was continued by Rev. Mitch Dixon, Unificationist and Co-Chairman of the Toronto UPF. Using Rev. Moon’s remarks that lineage is more important than love or life and that the loss of lineage caused God the greatest pain, Rev. Dixon asked us to think forward 5 or 20 generations. He then compared the lineages of two early pioneer Americans, one starting with Max Juke, as studied in Richard L. Dugdale’s “The Jukes: A Study in Crime, Pauperism, Disease and Heredity”, the other beginning with the preacher Jonathan Edwards. From the preacher descended judges, professors, senators, mayors, even a vice-President. From the hard drinking, womanizing Juke came murderers, prostitutes, alcoholics, vagrants and bank robbers!

P1120543The second panel was a perspective on marriage and family from two young adult Unificationists, Sharon Fuchs and Miki Young. They warmed and won the audience’s hearts with their testimonies of their ‘matchings’ to their respective spouses, Sharon’s German, Miki’s Japanese, followed by the story of the development of real, substantial relationships and the difficulties they have so far faced and overcome.

P1120639After a delicious lunch, much enjoyed by all, Rev. Stoyan Tadin addressed the conference theme with his normal humor, passion and intelligence. Rev. Stoyan Tadin delivered the keynote addressed on the topic of “Stable Families Bring Prosperity, Peace, and Integrity to the Nation.” Rev. Stoyan was explicitly clear that the

most serious problem humankind is facing today is the gradual destruction of family values due to uncontrolled check upon immorality and erosion of divine values. The stability in families comes through love between one man and one woman,which is the basis of pro-creativity designed by God.

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The final panel, convened by Lilly Tadin, Canada WFWP Chairwoman, dealt with, ‘How do Religious Norms and Values add Stability to the Family. Has this been weakened by hypocrisy?’ Sandra Palin of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints, shared the great value of Monday evening family night from when she was growing up right until today. Coming from a family of 9 she remembered how she loved it when all the family baked together. This tradition reflects the great value her church places on the family as, ‘ordained by God’ and that we are accountable before God.

Rev. David Stewart of the Unification Church looked at the commonly held assumption that divorce is as prevalent in Christian families as it is in the non-religious. Despite the problems faced in religious families he concluded that active, committed religious homes do indeed provide greater stability than the norm.  David was followed by Mrs. Kim Auckbaraullee graciously reading the presentation of the sadly absent Prof. Sahar Al-Majali, which provided insights from an Islamic perspective on the question at hand. Prefacing her remarks as to the centrality of the family in the Abrahamic faiths and other world religions as well as its sociological importance Prof. Al-Majali said that also, “the family was in all stages as a mirror that reflects the society in which it was created”. Thus despite the respect Islam has for the family and the care with which Islam has crafted its norms and values to protect the family and its members it has always been and remains under “waves of attack”. This is why Prof. Al-Majali exhorted all present to work hard to prevent greater disintegration and collapse of the family and Muslims to adhere strictly to the family norms and values of their religious tradition.

P1120579P1120621P1120631-Written by David Stewart

-Photographs by E. Young

Universal Peace Federation and Women’s Federation Joint Conference – Ottawa

Second National Conference  WFWP and UPF Canada held in capital city of Ottawa, Canada

On October 5, 2013, participants representing numerous cultural and religious backgrounds came together in our beautiful capital city to discuss “Should Canada see itself as a Welcoming Family?”

The three main sessions included throughout the day included the topics:

Session 1: A More Caring, Sharing Citizen: The Role of Education

Session 2 – Is Devotional Garb a Sign of Spiritual Commitment or a Political Statement?

Session 3: The Cry of the Lost Aboriginal Sisters Across Canada

The conference closed with a keynote speech by Dr. Douglas Joseph Cardinal, an acclaimed architect who combines the values he gained from his German mother and Native father to create structures that show the contributions of Aboriginal people integrated into global civilization.

Here are pictures of the day:


 

Her Story – Toronto WFWP

May 25,  2013 Toronto Chapter hosted “Her Story”

This is the story of the women who have moved “His-Story” forward:

“History, has been the record of his-story, even though more than half of humanity consists of women, her-story was omitted. Many of her stories and her valuable contributions have been left out of historical records; however we women must work towards making human history complete in the 21St century by putting the stories of women on record, along with the stories of men.
By Her-Story we don’t mean to strive for an exclusive female story to be created in competition with men, but rather strive for the whole story of humanity, where the respective contributions of both men and women, compliment each other. Her-Story presentation gives you a wonderful untold perspective on how women were able to shape the history of humanity and bring positive changes intothe World.”
Here is our event in pictures:
 

Vancouver WFWP Chapter Event

 WFWP Vancouver had a Cooking Class, Fundraising event on Sunday, April 21 2013 at Nikkei National Museum & Culture Centre from 2PM to 4PM.  They welcomed five wonderful ladies who taught us their spectacular salads recipes that each represented their countries!  There were lessons of Korean Salad & dressing, Japanese Ebi (Shrimp) Sunomono Salad, Persian Oliver Salad, Russian Beet Salad “Vinegret”, and Filipino Tropical Fruit Salad with Macaroni!
Approximately  35 people participated in the event.  The WFWP Vancouver Chapter has always enjoyed sharing recipes of various cultures.  It was wonderful to see so many happy faces on those trying to learn new recipes and skills.  They were eager to get useful tips on how to make delicious food for their friends and families.
 In conjunction with the cooking class, WFWP Vancouver had a Bake Sale, Silent Auction, Raffle prizes, Merchandise Sale etc to make it an extra exciting day!  All the participants had a fun afternoon together!!
 The WFWP Vancouver chapter would like to extend a special Thank you to Yukie, The WFWP Vancouver Chapter chair person, for organizing such a successful event; to Teresa who is always a passionate and wonderful MC; to the beautiful ladies who shared their tips on how to make delicious salads; and to all the chapter members who prepared items for the bake sale, merchandise, sale and setting up every single details for the event… and to the husbands who quietly and patiently supported this big group of ladies!
To view the full album of event pictures, follow this link:

In Review: 19th Commemoration of the Genocide against Tutsis

Three members of our WFWP Community had the opportunity to attend the 19th Commemoration of the Genocide in Rwanda on April 13 at Ryerson University, Toronto.  Mrs. Eveline Stewart shares here experience with us today…

”Our idea of what it means to be a human being was shattered”. Thus Ms. Solange Umwali opened the commemoration of the 19th anniversary of  a very dark chapter of human history:  the genocide of  one million Tutsis in Rwanda from April to July 1994. Three members of Woman’s Federation for World Peace (WFWP) were in attendance, Esther Tamale, Jennifer Biscocho from the Toronto chapter, and Eveline Stewart from the Hamilton. Our organization has a relationship with the nation of Rwanda through the New Hope Technical Institute in Kigali, founded by Japanese WFWP members, for which we have been fundraising the last 6 years.

The extent of this tragedy is very hard to fathom. More difficult to accept was the inaction of many western governments and the United Nations which made a conscious decision not to intervene to stop the mass killing of men, women and children. Hon. Irwin Cotler MP, former Minister of Justice underlined the lessons to be learned from the Rwandan massacres:

 1. Not unlike the Holocaust this was the result of a state sanctioned culture beginning with the dehumanization of a group of people. Tutsis were portrayed as cockroaches intent on attacking the population. This paralleled the Holocaust history where violence began with words.

2. We shall not forget the crime of indifference and complicity of the international community at the level of the Security Council of the United Nations.

3. The dangers of the culture of impunity at the time. Since then Canada has enacted laws to prosecute the Canadian perpetrator of genocide.

4. The violence committed against women used systematically as an instrument of war.

5. The assaults on the most vulnerable, women, children and the elderly.

6. The cruelty of genocide denial where victims are accused of fabrication.

7. The heroism of those who stood up and gave their utmost to alarm the world to the carnage.

 Dr. Eugene Nshimiyimana gave some historical background to the traditional ways of living and dealing with conflict in Rwanda prior to the arrival of the colonial powers. Colonial authority replaced the old system and it became a common stratagem to favor one group, the Tutsis for their intelligence, or the other, the Hutus , having compassion for their oppression,  and the perpetuation of a cycle of violence and revenge.

Dr. Amanda Grzyb gave an expose on the role of the media prior to April 1994.The anti-Tutsi propaganda was promoted through the newspaper, Kangura,  and the radio waves. At the height of the genocide people on the ground were directed to more victims through radio broadcast. General Dallaire and some embassy personnel reported this to their superiors who could have used some radio-wave jamming device, but this was judged too costly!

The coverage in the western media portrayed the events as  tribal warfare, internal affairs not warranting any meddling or intervention. In Canadian newspaper articles more concern was expressed for the few whites having to get out of the country or the gorillas of a certain reserve.

Speakers included representatives of the Jewish and Armenian community, who shared many common experiences with Rwandans. Presentations were made of different NGO’s active in the nation.

Keynote speaker Dr. Gerry Kaplan gave a passionate presentation on a network of about a dozen individuals around the globe who have made an occupation of spreading conspiracy theories negating the genocide, apparently stemming from their avowed hatred of the US government. These groups, Dr. Caplan explained, mysteriously allege that the genocide was somehow inspired by US interests in the region! These individuals, he added, tend to be on the extreme left wing fringes and almost religiously espouse their position with total disregard to all available evidence. Dr. Caplan suggested that while it was almost impossible to eliminate all of these negative elements, Rwandans owed it to themselves to learn to cope and move on with the task of rebuilding their country for the better, rather than waste precious energy to always go after these groups which merely gives them the attention they want and might potentially give undue credence to those who are determined to be drunk with their own deliberate distortions of history.

H.E. Edda Mukabagwiza concluded the evening in very reassuring terms when she reiterated that Rwanda has proved that it is capable of lifting its people out of despair and poverty and into a brighter future, and later adding in un-minced terms that there will never again be genocide in Rwanda.

-Eveline Stewart

For pictures of the event please see:  http://www.rdca.ca/index.php/en/pictures

Montreal Planning Meeting

On Saturday, April 13th, WFWP Canada President Lilly Tadin, and WFWP Canada Treasurer Blandine Stringer braved the aftermath of an ice storm in Ontario to travel to Montreal, Quebec for an afternoon gathering of fourteen WFWP members and supporters.
The Participants had a great experience discussing, brainstorming and planning activities for WFWP chapter in Montreal.
President, Lilly Tadin gave words of encouragement about the importance of the work of WFWP, particularly the Global Women’s Peace Network, and the seriousness of our Founder and her vision and goals in the upcoming years.
Treasurer, Blandine Stringer explained the need for bylaws in a Not-for Profit organization and the transition process to comply with the new government Not-for-Profit Act.  Blandine’s goal is for members to approve the bylaws at the January 2014 AGM.
Thank you to WFWP of Montreal and their strong desire to work together to build a strong community.

Welcoming a New City Chapter – Ottawa

“The problems that humanity faces today can only be resolved through the ideals of true love centering on God, and one family under God.” – Hak Ja Han Moon, July 18, 2012
WFWP Canada would like to officially welcome the Ottawa Chapter and congratulate them on their openning ceremonies held at the Bronson Centre on March 21, 2013 in Ottawa.
The program was organized by Blandine Stringer with the help from members of the Ottawa community and WFWP Ottawa chapter members.
The program’s MC, Angelique Amengavi
Mrs. Lilly Tadin, WFWP Canada President, WFWPI vice-president, was the guest speaker for the evening.  She encouraged women of the community to work together to build up the Women’s Federation Foundation.  She continued to stress the fact that Women’s Federation was founded on the premise that women need to take the lead with maternal and mature love that draws on important elements such as empathy, reconciliation, intuition, tenacity, inclusion and sacrifice.  Women have the ability to build a world of peace based on one united human family. She commended, both the women and men present for their efforts to initiate a new chapter for Women’s Federation in the capital city of Canada stressing that to be people of influence, we need to think and act as owners…not as visitors and spectators. She concluded saying that seeds are being sown for a prosperous future.
Anna Baksheeva performed several selections for the Event

International Women’s Day-Toronto Event

 

“Break the silence.  When you witness violence against women and girls, do not sit back. Act.” 

-Ban Ki Moon, UN Secretary General

On Saturday March 23, 2013, WFWP Toronto Chapter held its 7th annual International Women’s Day Luncheon.  This year again we followed the theme of the 57th session of the Commission of the Status of Women : Women standing up to violence: Finding ways through, with hope and connections.

The programme was attended by over fifty participants including members from the York Region Police Department, Community Leaders, Notable Authors, NGO leaders as well as numerous WFWP members, families and friends.

 The event was held at a prominent downtown Toronto Holiday Inn. The intimate luncheon was beautifully decorated by Valerie Augustine, who donated a raffle gift basket and flowers from Lite it UP, her Toronto based candle company.  The hosting hotel graciously donated a complimentary night as a door prize in honour of the WFWP event.

Karlyn D. Percil, Author, Speaker, and Self-love Advocate opened the event.  Karlyn, who has also appeared on the Oprah Winfrey network, told her story of how she tried to hide from the shame in her life, shame that others had put upon her.  She encouraged all women to know their value and not to let shame rule their lives.  Karlyn stated the need to create a culture to break the silence.  She continued, that even if you have not gone through traumatizing events, those you know may have…and need help to express their past.  Karlyn strongly pointed out  all individuals should know their own value, then they would ultimately be able to find joy and happiness and the purpose of their lives.

Karlyn D. Percil, Author and Advocate
Confrence Room at Holiday Inn

   The second speaker was Bahi Krishnkhanthan, a Motivational Speaker, Facilitator and Psychotherapist.  She hoped to raise awareness among all cultures and genders.  She shared her experience and the violence that she endured as a young lady and young mother.  Fighting to stand up for her rights and for the rights of her young children, Bahi committed herself to end the abuse that she faced.  But in the end…she found that it wasn’t the end of the abuse that changed her life.  It was the ability to finally forgive the abuser that finally gave her the freedom that she seeked since her youth.  She encouraged all of those who had faced abuse…to find forgiveness in their hearts.

Bahi Krishnakhantan, Motivational Speaker, Facilitator and Psychotherapist

 The event was closed with the WFWP national President’s Address.  Mrs. Lilly Tadin presented the need for women to know the facts.  She presented the report from the UN’s Status of Women Conference.  In addition she pointed out the violence here at home in Canada…especially towards Aboriginals of both genders.   Ending violence against women, one of the UN’s Millienium Development Goals, has not yet been accomplished on the World Level.  She stressed that it must be included in any new development framework.

Mrs. Lilly Tadin, WFWP President Canada, Vice President WFWPI

   Numerous entertainers performed at the event, including Clear Stone Band, Poetess Nadine Williams, and the Tamale Sisters, with a beautifully a capella selection.

A candle light ceremony concluded the event.  A representative man and women lit the first two candles symbolizing a new beginning of a joint partnership.  Where violence would no longer be tollerated.  The “light” was then passed to candles held by all the participants.

WFWP would like to thank all of its members who invested their time and effort to making this event a success. A special thank you to…Eveline Stewart as MC, Diane Dixon, Jennifer Biscocho,and the many more members who worked behind the scenes…we thank you!

Eveline Stewart and Diane Dixon with the Raffle
Tamale Sisters
Question and Answer Section of the Conference

In Review: The WFWP planning retreat

On January 19, 2013 members of the WFWP Canada met in Cobourg, Ontario to discussion their vision for the year.  Nine members were able to attend, with two participating via conference call for the final session.  We thank all members who were able to participate.  We hope that the coming year will be fruitful…if you were not able to attend…your thoughts and ideas are always important to us…please join our converstations by adding to the comment section at the end of this post.

The board presented the question:  Who Are We?  Where Are We Going?

The members present were inspired to think of the direction in which they would like to see our organization go this year.  A speech from our founder, Mrs. Hak Ja Han was read.  In her speech, she expressed the extreme value of women…that they are truely the jewels of God.

  • NEED MORE “DEEDS”.  In a determination to become those “jewels”…the members expressed a desire to “serve” the community more…to not just have conferences…but to be the ones who could reach out with a heart of a mother to our communities…
  • TO SERVE WITH LOVE.  was the motto suggested by Lilly Tadin, President, WFWP Canada.  All members present agreed that the motto was fitting for the year ahead.
  • OUTREACH.  Eveline Stewart suggested creation of material to be given to sisters…to help in reaching out to their community…Eveline expressed her interest in heading a commitie to make an outreach package.  Angela Fortaine volunteered to assist in this area…if others are interested in helping, please contact Eveline Stewart.
  • LEARN.  The members present suggested partnering with existing organizations.  Through partnering, we could help the community, make friends with a broader base of community leaders and learn valuable skills to further the development of our own organization.
  • BETTER COMMUNICATION SYSTEM.  Various ways were disscussed and will continue to be discussed by the Board.  Ideas presented were:  inspirational weekly quotes, a “sharing page” to share what has worked in various chapters, a Facebook Page, better membership records, and the National Office or National Board visiting chapters across the nation on a yearly basis.

The next session was the Budget and Website.  Blandine Stringer, treasurer of WFWP Canada, presented the two ways in which money can be raised for our organization.   

  • GRANTS:  Blandine suggested a committee be formed to research grants and how to access funds.  Most Granting Agencies offer grants for projects and not for operating expenses.  If local chapters are planning specific projects, then funding could be requested.  If you are interested in contributing to research in this area, please contact Blandine Stringer.
  • FUNDRAISING
    • each chapter has done activities and will continue to improve
    • to help develop local activities, chapter fundraiser funds will stay within the chapter.
    • membership fees go to national (discussion will be continued on this topic by the board).
  • WEBSITE:  at this time the members present decided to invest in the current WFWP Canada Website.  The website is incomplete and needs chapter input.  It was asked that each chapter find a representative to be the “communication link” to the main blogger at the national office.  The main blogger then will be responsible to input that information.  It was determined that this appoarch will be done for one year.  If it is unsuccessful, a professional company will be contacted (if funding allows).
  • TRANSITION PROCESS to compy with the new Not-for-Profit Act.  A draft Bylaws has been distributed; members in attendance were encouraged to read the proposed Bylaws and send questions and comments to Blandine at blandinestringer@yahoo.ca.  Lilly and Blandine are planning to visit the Montreal and Vancouver sisters to promote the discussion on the Bylaws.  The transition to the new requirements must completed by October 2014.

Which direction do you wish to see WFWP Canada going? We would like to hear from you.  Please leave your comments