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"Make peace your own way this holiday season!"
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"Make peace your own way this holiday season!"

Harnoor Gill picAs the Christmas and New Year’s festive season approaches, Harnoor Gill, 16, a Commonwealth Correspondent from Georgetown in Canada, has some green ideas about ways to spread peace and joy.

I always wondered about the meaning of peace; whether it is a conflict resolution or more than that.

I got my answer when I realized that it was more than  conflict resolution, and I did that after making connections and bonds within my community. This helped make me stronger as well as an integral part of my growing community.

As part of that experience, I had the honour of attending the YMCA Peace Medallion ceremony in Mississauga, Ontario. YMCA states that “We build strong kids, strong families, and strong communities”. Their message is great and inspiring! Values we all share, such as care and support, enrich our community by encouraging us and giving us a way to lend a hand to someone in need.

YMCA involves many values of peace building in our neighbourhoods. For example, nurturing someone’s life without expecting anything in return is one form of peace. We can all promote peace in each other’s lives by taking an extra step forward. We can also enlighten many lives in this world by donating our time or our money, new or gently used clothes and shoes, perishable and non-perishable food items to the local food bank.

Also, we can spend some time at senior centres or invite an elderly person to make them feel welcome at home. In addition, spending time at volunteer centers during food drives is an amazing opportunity to celebrate and inspire other like-minded individuals to do the same. There are millions of ways that we can choose to help someone. You just have to set your mind and go for it, just like watching a movie!

We can make it our dream to fulfil the wishes of another. Contact your local children’s aid centre to see if they are looking for some help. Or check out at least one volunteering opportunity, I am positive that you will find a way to give back to your community!

We can also go green this festive season by making wise and smart choices. We all can avoid heavy paper wrapping and alternatively use recycled paper or even a fabric bag that can later be reused. Car-pooling or using public transit is another great way to make our community greener.

This holiday season, do something new that you have never done before, like going to your conservation area and helping them with their educational activities. Community parks and recreation centres are always looking for volunteers, so make your holiday spirit special this year and celebrate with your community.

Happy holidays and welcome to the year 2015!!

photo credit: Anemone Letterpress via photopin cc
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About me: I am a student in Georgetown, Canada, and founder of the Peace Welcome Club. I love to volunteer, read, write, and play basketball. I volunteer with local environmental and youth organizations and am dedicated to raising awareness about youth volunteering. My writing has been published in Indo-Canadian Voice, Asian Journal, Times of India, The Independent & Free Press, and in Amazing Kids! Magazine.

https://www.facebook.com/PeaceWelcomeClub

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Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth Youth Programme. Articles are published in a spirit of dialogue, respect and understanding. If you disagree, why not submit a response.
To learn more about becoming a Commonwealth Correspondent please visit: http://www.yourcommonwealth.org/submit-articles/commonwealthcorrespondents/

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