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Peace Group from Brooklyn, NY and Women’s Rights Group from Chennai, India Announce Collaboration
New collaborative partners– “I Declare World Peace” and “The Red Elephant Foundation” – to take advantage of cross-promotion for a common goal
The Red Elephant Foundation is an initiative that seeks to reflect women in a positive light through stories of inspiration, power, perseverance and courage in the face of adversity. The name “Red Elephant" communicates the idea that these stories of triumph must never be forgotten. REF is the brainchild of Kirthi Jayakumar, a well-known Indian writer, lawyer and activist. In December, 2012, Jennifer McIntyre, U.S. Consul General, Chennai, India, presented the U.S. Presidential Service Award to Ms. Jayakumar, who was awarded the Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards for her volunteer work with Delta Women, an NGO.
President Barack Obama, in a letter congratulating Ms. Jayakumar on winning the award, said, “Individuals, the private sector, and government must combine efforts to make real and lasting change so that each person has the opportunity to fulfill his or her potential.”
President Obama’s observation about the importance of combining efforts to make lasting change, ultimately led to the relationship between REF and IDWP.
The I Declare World Peace project is an art project inspired by the famous piece of installation art known as The Gates, created by the world renowned artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude. IDWP leverages social media to “install” the affirmation “I Declare World Peace” into the mind of humanity, with the goal of raising global peace consciousness. A spokesperson for IDWP advised that research reports by credible agencies has convinced IDWP that world peace is critically dependent on achieving equal treatment and opportunity for everyone, regardless of sex.
IDWP president, Brooklyn-based photographer Rita Gelber, a native of Helsinki, Finland immediately saw a natural fit with REF. “Finland is a country routinely ranked among the ten most peaceful in the world and it also happens to be a country with a smaller sex-equality disparity than countries where peace seems most elusive.” Ms. Gelber went on to note that the efforts of Ms. Jayakumar and REF were “close to my heart as a woman, and completely consistent with IDWP’s efforts to raise global peace consciousness.”
Ms. Jayakumar, reached at REF headquarters in Chennai, noted that “we could not be more pleased with our cross-promotion. IDWP has a growing reach throughout social media. It is important for us to have the world learn that harmonious society absolutely requires equalized educational opportunities, job opportunities and social opportunities so that women and girls – more than half of humanity is female - are no longer deprived.”
Ms. Gelber and Ms. Jayakumar have expressed to each other via email their shared belief about how important advancing the rights of women and girls, and creating opportunities for them, is to achieving the goal of world peace.
Ms. Gelber told a reporter that “we firmly believe that when the Red Elephant Foundation achieves its goals, the ground upon which world peace will be built will be firmer than ever before in history. The fulfillment of IDWP’s goals is dependent on the fulfillment of REF’s goals.” Ms. Jayakumar strongly echoed that sentiment, noting “we too have seen studies correlating equality with peacefulness. The goals of REF and IDWP are inextricably intertwined – there can be no peace without equality.”
The I Declare World Peace project is explained fully at http://www.ideclareworldpeace.org
The Red Elephant Foundation is described in full at http://www.redelephantfoundation.org