Once I retired from teaching, one of the things I very much looked forward to was being able to volunteer my services to the International Peace Garden Foundation. I serve as Education Coordinator, which enables me to address educational aspects of promotion of peaceful mindsets and activities in a variety of settings, primarily in schools and colleges, internationally. In my capacity as Education Coordinator, I have accompanied IPGF President, Paula Savage, and other IPGF volunteers, to three countries: Kiev, Turkey, and Switzerland. In each of these countries, we were privileged to be guests of governing officials at the dedications of the Peace Gardens, and at many school-based programs honoring the participation of students and faculty in programs they created. We appreciate the sentiments and efforts these programs represent. They are elaborate, beautifully planned and executed and dedicated to our common goal of promoting peace. Often, the students themselves will plant the Peace Gardens. When we visit the schools, for example, we may follow-up with discussions in English, about their experiences about planting the gardens, along with questions and answers regarding IPGF's history and future goals. We have been the recipients of gifts with themes of peace, such as student made rugs and quilts. These gifts reside in IPGF's headquarters and become part of our rich history. The extraordinary experiences that happen person-to-person are so memorable, and all arise because of shared interest and devotion to promoting peace and demonstrating out devotion by creating concrete symbols ( international gardens) to memorialize our ideas. We welcome volunteers to carry forth our common desire for peace in all aspects of life. We become better individuals, and the planet's population becomes more able to dream and accomplish positive deeds when peace increases and is shared. It's surely worth whatever efforts we may make, and we invite you to join us.
I have been a member of the IPGF for almost 15 years. I learned of the Foundation through its President, Paula Savage and was intrigued by her passion and vision for the Gardens. The Gardens are now located around the world and I have been present for several of the dedications, they are amazing. The Gardens are a source of pride for every country that has one and they are desired by many more countries. The Gardens are memorable and their message is one of the most important messages of our time. The IPGF is a wonderful organization that facilitates this lovely action.