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    Students mark International Day of Peace

    Students at West Hatch High School were reminded of the need for all nations to join together in the cause of world peace by taking part in the International Day of Peace yesterday (Wednesday) initially established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly.

    Organised by School Counsellor Sarah O’Donnell, all students viewed a Powerpoint
    presentation and took part in assemblies where key issues relating to the need for world peace were introduced - such as the suffering caused by war and conflict alongside the need for growing awareness and the generation of hope.

    Ms O'Donnell said: "Peace every day is the goal but focussing on a particular day is helpful for us all: peacefulness is important in our own lives, in our families, at work, in school and in our wider social lives.” 

    On the day a 'Tree of Peace' adorned the school's entrance hall, on which students tied messages related to the desire for peace around the world. 

    Some of the messages were prayers and sayings from different cultures and religions; others were statements of empathy for children like themselves distressed by the present Syrian conflict:

    “Thinking of all victims”
    “Love for all sentient (feeling) beings”
    “Bright blessing to all who walk the earth”.

    Year 9 student Arjun Kuhaendran, a West Hatch High School Charity Ambassador, helped to organise the event and was instrumental in the cookie sale that took place at break time. 

    He and his team - which included Nathan Grannel, Tilly Mae Kent, Charlotte Kent, Jaques Van Praagh, Kirsten Sewell-Humphreys and Charlotte Stevens - also sold tickets for the lunchtime Dance of Peace, a workshop led by Year 11 Dance students where anyone who paid 50p could join in the fun.

    Head Teacher Frances Howarth said: “Our celebration of the International Day of Peace was very moving. The reality of war and its tragic impact on human life was made very real to our students, leaving many of them deeply moved."

    She added: “We are pleased to have been part of this day where our efforts join with children worldwide in trying to make a difference.”

    The day raised £143.97 to be donated to the charity War Child.