Small works and small Individuals for a great task
A Coordinator of NGOs is a healthy blend of unique interests and different volunteers. This is why it is one of the spaces where we see evidence that everyone understands the concept of Peace in their own way, even though we share the concern and the will to work towards it. The first reality is feeling involved in the desires to achieve spaces of Peace and activities that help it. But it must be acknowledged that it would be very difficult to do so if, at every meeting, with every proposal or stance, on anniversaries or world days, we had to establish a definition of Peace that is satisfactory to everyone. This is the virtue of collectives, this is the challenge of democracy, this is the truth of coexistence.
We work on initiatives that accompany the grand word, confident in being part of a culture of Peace that we have not yet fully defined. The entities form an uneven fabric that lacks the solidity we would like but has demonstrated enough influence in the city of Lleida and its surroundings to manifest itself unequivocally: Small groups of courageous individuals who lead public protests against rearmament and military spending; Some responsible and bold citizens who fill out the box for fiscal objection to the official traffic of arms. Among us, there are activists who refuse the presence of the military at fairs and campaigns promoting education or youth employment. We also have educators who propose reflection and learning of non-violent communication or conflict resolution, the foundation of this culture.
We often coincide, but I believe we must highlight two events that have recently brought us all together and have given our collective activity a lot of visibility. These are the celebration of DENIP and Humoràlia.
In the first case, it was promoted that the celebration of the School Day for Non-Violence and Peace should go beyond the schools and the symbolic scope of a leisure day to become an activity with an impact on the streets and parks, engaging our children in an action that challenges them, makes them actively participate for more than one day, and stimulates their civic commitment. The success has been resounding and has spread to many more schools, spaces, and institutions.
Humoràlia, which initially was a graphic humor competition, emphasized social themes and the involvement of artists, eventually becoming a biennial international and prestigious exhibition that this year, on the theme of Peace, has collected over 600 works from artists from all continents. We will be able to see a selection of these in an exhibition, a catalog, and an educational guide based on these drawings, jokes, or drawn ideas that tell a lot and are easily read with a complicit and supportive glance.
For all of this, I believe we must recognize that by trusting in small people and the creativity of small painted messages, our contribution to Peace and disarmament may not be seen in large letters on marble or neon signs, but it is gaining more space every day in the hearts and minds of our fellow citizens. So be it.