Peacebuilders Camp at Koinonia Farm

A foundation for building peace: honoring dignity

“Everyone is born free and equal in dignity and rights.” This first article from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was also the focus for our first day of camp. Our initial task in understanding what this article means was to define dignity. Words like “value,” “respect,” and “equality” came up in our discussion. To narrow down further what it means to treat someone with dignity or respect, campers were asked to complete four sentences. They came up with some very insightful answers. Here are some of them:

I feel respected when others . . . 

  • introduce themselves
  • ask before physical contact
  • make eye contact

I feel disrespected when  . . . 

  • people are being fake
  • someone makes fun of my name or gives me a nickname I don’t want
  • someone tells lies about me

I show respect for myself when I . . . 

  • stand up for myself
  • honor physical and mental limits
  • ignore peer pressure

I show respect for others when I . . . 

  • acknowledge their culture
  • make sure they are heard
  • don’t gossip

Tomorrow, we’ll take all the ideas that were shared and distill them down into guidelines that we can all agree on for how we will treat each other this week of camp. Using dignity as a foundation for our relationships, we are well on our way to building peace!

Some other activities from our very full first day of Peacebuilders 2018:

Several get-to-know-you games broke the ice and helped us all remember each other’s names.
Many of our campers (and staff!) just can’t get enough time on the soccer field . . . even in the rain!
During free time, CIT Lucas taught a crowd of campers how to fold origami creations.


Meanwhile, counselor Lily challenged Cinque to Connect Four while Prince built the tallest tower ever.
The rain cleared and the evening was perfect for a hayride  . . .
…until the tractor couldn’t make it up a muddy hill, and we had to walk!
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