Table of Contents

News April 1 2013

Decisions Needed

Are Friends comfortable with this report to yearly meetings? Will Tom disseminate this to the Council for YM Representatives’ reports?

Report to Yearly Meetings 2013: Friends Peace Teams, Asia West Pacific Initiative. We’ve experienced a welcome resurgence of energy this year in the Initiative. Our work is fruitful as we continue to articulate our priorities as an established and reliable Friends program of travel and visitation with attention to grassroots peace work based on discernment.  John Michaelis joined us as co-coordinator with Nadine Hoover, and she has relinquished some of her administrative responsibilities, preferring to concentrate her energy for on-the-ground peace work in the region and writing and publishing while back home.  We have formally hired a part time office coordinator, Sarah Rozard, who has given us a welcome new look for our communications and recruiting.  Nadine recently created a new, well-received advanced Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) workshop on discernment.  John has developed a strong and ongoing relationship with Subhash and a group of AVP facilitators in Nepal undertaking numerous AVP workshops, and Valerie Joy is exploring a trip to the Philippines later this year, hoping to develop exchanges among AVP facilitaters in Java and the Philippines.  Rosemary Epps continues her quiet and successful peace work trips to Afghanistan that we may be able to publicize formally soon. Our new fund-raising program to attract sustaining members who commit to raising $500/year is going very well. We are blessed with the spiritual and financial support necessary to ensure this program for us all.

Do Friends attending the face-to-face meeting in St. Louis want to meet at 9 or 10am on Thursday, since the FPT sessions begin after lunch? What would the agenda be?

  1. Check in.
  2. What I’m doing for FPT-AWP and what I need.
  3. Do we know what the “necessary minimal work to have a program” is? Could a monthly report help us know how we are doing towards sustaining this program?
  4. Check out.

 

 

Resources Needed

Funds for the $5,000 loan to Petrus have been requested from AVP-VICTORIA. We should hear in the first week of April. If it is not received, Nadine will call Friends on the working group to ask if anyone would be able to provide this loan.

Funds for the $2,700 to pay for the railing at Friends Guest House is still needed. If Friends could announce to your meetings that their is an opportunity to support the Friends Guest House in Pati Central Java, this amount would complete construction of the building.

 

 

Accomplishments, March 2013:

Funds for a $2,100 loan to Kamto for the woodworking tools was received and has been lent to Kamto to begin producing puzzles, construction toys, blocks, etc…

Work Descriptions. Valerie drafted her job tasks, Nadine has yet to respond. John and Nadine have begun outlining “work descriptions” of the work necessary to ensure a reliable, accessible Friends program.

Monday 26 Feb. – 1 March 2013,  Jakarta: Nadine facilitated an AVP Basic Workshop in Jakarta with Ika and Aja and a dozen mothers of young children. They are very excited about hosting a monthly refresher meeting in Jakarta and hosting regular workshops.

 

3-25 March 2013, Australia: March was a busy time for Friends Peace Teams Asia West Pacific Initiative particularly in Australia. Nadine Hoover travelled here in Australia as a Silver Wattle Traveling Friend, sponsored by the Victoria Alternatives to Violence Project group, for most of the month and visited Brisbane, some small towns on the coast of New South Wales, Sydney, Canberra, Hobart and Melbourne. She and John Michaelis facilitated two discernment workshops, a trauma healing workshop and presented eight information sessions about Friends Peace Teams and their work to Quakers and others.

 

Friends Peace Teams invited the Quaker Australia Yearly Meeting to be part of the Friends Peace Teams Council. We believe that the information presented will make it easier for the Yearly meeting to make an informed response to the invitation.

 

Sunday 3 March, Brisbane: “Peace Leadership” workshop with 12 participants from the Brisbane Peace community- program based on AVP principles with Nadine supported by 2 local facilitators. This was a wonderful time to “nurture the nurturers” in the peace community. We learned to notice the power that transforms us in the good times and the bad; to use grounding and stabilization techniques to face the hard things straight on; and to turn to and trusting our discernment of what is right and true in our lives.

Monday 4 March, Brisbane: Talk by Nadine at Brisbane Meeting House to 15 people, followed by a shared meal. A write up on these first two events was submitted to April Quaker Letter. Friends were very interested in the structure of Friends Peace Teams and in the history of the traveling Friends and the monthly meetings. The discussion of discernment made a couple Friends feel that our experiences in Friends Peace Teams was very enlightening when applied to he condition of white Australia working to “support” the First Nations People.

Jason McLeod, a Brisbane Friend, was disappointment that he was not up to coming out to see Nadine when she was here. Jason has been actively visiting in West Papua, Irian Jaya, Indonesia for decades.  He suggested two-way visiting between West Papua and Java, or at least visiting with West Papuans when we are in Java, since there are a number of Papuans living in Java. Jason says, “Helping connect Friends with Papuans to learn about the conflict and how Friends might support peace with justice when they return back to their own countries would be very useful. Nadine, John and Valerie can visit with Jason. We will encourage Jason to join the spiritual companions’ working group calls, to get involved with us and for all of us to get to know one another. We may explore opportunities to visit from that basis.

Tuesday 5 March, Lismore: Nadine talked to 15 Northern Rivers Friends in Lismore. A few of them knew Indonesia well, but most of them had very little exposure. They were interested in the historical role of Traveling Friends among us and examples of friendships and visiting in Indonesia. We also visited a kuala rescue center and the community garden and discussed their anti-fracking organizing.

6-10 March, Sydney: Nadine and John led a discernment workshop in Sydney for a small group of core AVP facilitators. It was good practice for John before his trip to Nepal next month to share the workshop there.

Monday 11 March, Blue Mountains: A dozen people (including 3 young people) attended an evening house gathering at Jasmine Payget’s home in the Blue Mountains. The mixed audience, with 3 Quakers, a person from the East Timor group (interested in restorative justice), a person undertaking Peace Studies at Sydney University as well as artists, teachers, students, community development and environmental activists. Jasmine plans to continue to follow up with them and to write report for her local meeting.

13-18 March, Silver Wattle: 14 participants attended a four-day discernment course, where Nadine continued to sell Aceh bags and purses she’d brought from Sumatra. Helen Bayes wrote: “I think her meetings at Friends meetings has raised the profile of Friend Peace Teams and hopefully interested people to go on a visit and to be a supporter. From a Silver Wattle point of view, her travel was widely attributed to Silver Wattle sponsorship which is good for Silver Wattle. However she spent only five days at Silver Wattle and had only one free day there, following a much shorter course than the usual. The course was well attended and fitted well with our objectives for her visit.”

19-20 March, Hobart, Tasmania: Nadine met with a group of seven AVP facilitators in the afternoon for a long discussion of how transforming power and living in accord with our conscience could shape our lives today, then with the Friends of Hobart Meeting after potluck. The following day she spoke to some faculty at tea time, to the fifth year students and to the assembly of eleven and twelve year students.

Thursday 21 March, Melbourne: A shared meal was held held, when Friends were able to hear of the work of the Friends Peace Teams in general, and in Indonesia in particular.

22-24 March, Melbourne: A Healing Trauma workshop was held under the auspice of AVP-Victoria, and 20 people took part. This was also greatly appreciated.

25-27 March, Jakarta: Nadine was able to return to Jakarta for two days. She met with staff from the Directorate of Early Childhood Education, who confirmed their interest in attending a workshop for one week in early June in Barak Induk with local Department of Education staff, after which they are willing to explore sustained support for the preschool in Barak Induk. Nadine also met with national officials and inquired how they would feel if Friends Peace Teams members began meeting with people from western Papua. They confirmed that US gold interests are at the heart of the decades of violence in Papua and said it would be really good for people in the US to speak out about the conditions in Papua.

30 March – 18 April, Kabul, Afghanistan: Rosemary Epps (Hobart, Tasmania) and Julei Korner (Sydney, Australia) left for Kabul to support friends working for women’s rights to do nonviolence training and social skills development. It is so wonderful that we are able to reduce the isolation to these women even this small bit. Moira Darling asks us to hold them in the Light as they travel.

27-28 March, Leesburg, Florida: Nadine met with the Young Adult Friends in the evening, then presented at breakfast and lunch tables and visited through the day at Southeastern Yearly Meeting. It was wonderful to share stories of the trip with Friends and to catch up on the work of Pro-Nica.

30 March, Lewes, Delaware: The team that returned from Indonesia met at Dean and Sharon Hoover’s home at Cadbury to share pictures and stories, and to transfer the Acehnese bags that Martha brought home from Indonesia. Martha Baer compiled extensive notes from the trip to include in the Volunteer Handbook for future trips.

16-30 April, Friends Peace Team to Nepal. The arrangements for the trip to Nepal are proceeding well. Carroll Broome (California), Bheena Sewnarain (Perth), Blaze Nowara (New York) are joining John on this trip. Blaze produced an excellent video on AVP in the USA and we are expecting he will document the Nepal trip too. The team arrives in Kathmandu where they hope to facilitate two AVP Basic workshops plus a workshop on Discernment and a Trauma Healing workshop. We expect that training will be used to facilitate workshops in the Refugee Camps for people exiled from Bhutan now in South Eastern Nepal.