High Schoolers Converge at UH to Rally For Peace and Nonviolence

Spring Break ends with a cheer for peace, as high school students from around the city gather at the University of Houston to rally for peace and nonviolence. The annual PeaceJam Youth Conference is set for March 29-30 and features guidance from Nobel Peace Prize recipient Betty Williams.

More than 100 students from Houston area high schools, YMCAs, the Jewish Community Center, the Aga Khan Youth and Sports Board, as well as several out-of-town groups, will assemble to share their ideas on leadership, diversity, community and global issues.

"High school youth report higher levels of school and community engagement and a better understanding of peace and nonviolence after participating in the PeaceJam Program," said coordinator Jamie Parker. "PeaceJam is the only organization in the world that has 11 Nobel Peace Prize Laureates working together for a common cause-our youth."

One of the featured PeaceJam activities occurs at 3 p.m., Saturday, when students will rally on campus and march to Lynn Eusan Park. There, Williams and the student participants will address the crowd in support of PeaceJam's Global Call to Action-an initiative launched by PeaceJam Nobel Laureates to inspire over a billion acts of service in 10 years.

In addition, the UH Graduate College of Social Work will host a public talk with Williams at 7 p.m., Friday, March 28 in the Houston Room of the University Center. Williams' keynote address will be "Community-Based Solutions to the Problem of Violence." The event is free and open to the public. Williams received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1977, along with Mairead Corrigan Maguire, in recognition of their grassroots movement to end violence in Northern Ireland.

PeaceJam is a global project that began in 1996 in Denver as a way to connect youth with Nobel Peace Laureates and to pass on the spirit, skills and wisdom they embody. The goal of PeaceJam is to create a new generation of young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities and the world.

For more information on PeaceJam, visit www.peacejam.org.

For more information on the UH Graduate College of Social Work, please visit www.sw.uh.edu/.

WHAT: PeaceJam Youth Conference

7 p.m., Friday, March 28
Keynote address by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Betty Williams
University Center-Houston Room
For directions and parking information, visit www.uh.edu/campus_map/buildings/UC.php.

3 p.m., Saturday, March 29
PeaceJam Rally in UH Lynn Eusan Park         
For directions and parking information, visit www.uh.edu/campus_map/buildings/LEP.php.

WHERE: University of Houston