Creating a Culture of Peace

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CCP Training GroupCCP emphasizes two forms of active nonviolence: Constructive Nonviolence includes the ways of creating a just and peaceful culture by developing new relationships, new practices, and new institutions. Nonviolent Resistance includes tactics such as boycotts, petitions, and rallies; it is designed to protest, and even to interfere with, injustice and oppression. Both forms are enhanced by increased democratic participation.

CCP is offered in communities across the country. Within its first four years, CCP traveled to 36 states and Palestine, trained thousands of participants and 300 trainers, and was adopted by national and regional faith groups and Veterans for Peace.



National CCP Founder

Janet ChisholmJanet Chisholm grew up in a small town of 18,000--Las Vegas, Nevada. She watched above ground nuclear bomb tests at close range at the nearby nuclear test site. In high school she committed to learn all she could from local atomic scientists and from physics, chemistry and math classes; she entered Pomona College as a chemistry major hoping to design rockets and bombs to help the country compete with the Soviets. She took religion courses, joined civil rights groups, volunteered in the inner city, and lived nine months in Germany studying theology, the confessing church and lay academies. She graduated with a degree in Religion.

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2013 CCP National Board of Directors

Brief biographies of CCP Board Members

Elliott Adams, Co-Chair of the CCP Board of Directors and Facilitator, former paratrooper and past President of Veterans for Peace, has dedicated his life to abolishing all war, served in many political and civic leadership positions, attended untold numbers of demonstrations, and worked at many levels, from stapling signs to doing logistics, organizing work, and conducting nonviolence training across the country for United For Peace and Justice, War Resisters League, School Of Americas Watch, Peace Has No Borders, Veterans For Peace, as well as Creating a Culture of Peace.

Martha Dominguez, CCP Board Member and Facilitator, is originally from Honduras, CA and her cultural perspective is from the Maya-Lenca Indigenous culture. From birth she has followed a spiritual path. Martha came to the US in 1959 and graduated with an International Business degree. While living in New Mexico she participated in efforts with the Chicano community, Indigenous issues and the State office of African Affairs, African American’s Social workers. In 2007 she was invited to help organize “Building A Culture of Peace Global Conference" sponsored by the State of New Mexico. The goals were to identify the best practices of peace to share, to build alliances, and to develop strategic steps for peaceful actions. Some of the world leaders who presented there were: Arun Gandhi, Nobel Peace Laureates Rigoberta Menchu Tum from Guatamala, Jody Williams, and H.H. the Dalai Lama by video.


Barb Gessner, Co-Chair of the CCP Board of Directors and Trainer of Trainers. She also Chairs the Peace Commission for the Episcopal Diocese of Bethlehem (Northeastern Pennsylvania), is a member and contributor to the national Episcopal Peace Fellowship, and is a trained lay minister and chaplain. Her work in the field of education has focused on teacher preparation including self-awareness and interpersonal communications, two areas of great use in nonviolence education. And her doctoral dissertation dealt with the development of educational communities.

 

Wanda Guthrie, Secretary of the CCP Board of Directors and Facilitator, has served as volunteer and board member of the Thomas Merton Center in Pittsburgh, PA for 17 years. In addition to that she has: worked as a grassroots advocate of the Children's Defense Fund, founded an interfaith group whose mission is to connect spiritual integrity to actions for peace and social justice, and witnessed on behalf of those not represented at the G20 Summit in Pittsburgh. She currently serves as Chair of the Environmental Justice Committee of the TMC. "I believe that all long term civil rights movements begin locally and change follows the basic rules of the natural world: We are all diverse, self-initiating, and in communion. What a great lesson!"

Lois “Toni” McClendon, CCP Board Member and Facilitator, is a long-time peace and social justice activist in the Pittsburgh region.  As a member of Communities in Action for Peace, she is currently collaborating with American Friends Service Committee to develop a youth leadership program around Racial Equity and Human Rights. Her academic education is in the field of Political Science.

 

Daniel Petersen-Snyder, CCP Board Member and Facilitator, has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in New York since 1991, mostly working with children and youth with severe psychiatric and emotional problems. As part of his work he developed curriculum for training staff on inpatient psychiatric units in creating nonviolent therapeutic environments which encourage tolerance and healing. He is also an instructor in training to prevent child abuse and sexual harassment as well as facilitating the Healthy Congregations program. He is currently working to develop a Social Justice Commission for the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island and is working for Project Home in Long Beach, NY helping survivors of super storm Sandy cope with the challenges that they are facing concretely and emotionally.

T. Michael Rock, Treasurer of the CCP Board of Directors and Trainer of Trainers, is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. A lead facilitator in CCP, he is also involved nationally in training teachers for a value-based sexuality curriculum for all ages. T. Michael volunteers as a member of various community non-profit boards related to nonviolence and interfaith dialogue, including the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and the Minnesota Chapter of the Fellowship of Reconciliation. Believing that the personal is political, he is an active lobbyist on issues of hunger, peace, nonviolence, and comprehensive sexuality education.


Phil Stoltzfus, Interim Executive Director, and Facilitator, is a professor of theology, religion, and peace studies. He is a conscientious objector with a background in the Mennonite Church, USA, and was the first volunteer in 1987 for the pioneering nonviolence organization Christian Peacemaker Teams.  He currently serves on the board of the Minnesota Fellowship of Reconciliation, and served on the National Council of Fellowship of Reconciliation, USA, 2010-13.


Dwight Wagenius, CCP Board Member and Facilitator, has been approved for ordination in the United Church of Christ. He’s a member of the Justice and Witness Team of the Minnesota Conference, United Church of Christ, and on the board of the G Project, producing a documentary film “Gold Fever” regarding globalization oppression in Guatemala. Prior to seminary, he practiced law as an Assistant Attorney General in the State of Minnesota for 30 years working in environmental protection except for a few years in consumer protection.  Dwight served in the Peace Corps in Morocco.

 


 


Program Overview

CCP FacesCreating a Culture of Peace (CCP) is a nationwide program for community-based peacemaking. The innovative design of CCP provides a holistic and practical foundation in spiritually-grounded active nonviolence. Participants come to recognize their own power for making personal and social changes without violence and improve their skills for respectful engagement with opponents, instead of confrontation that polarizes and demonizes.

Unlike trainings that focus only on anti-war protest, CCP training is an incubator for participants to raise issues which most concern them--group controversy and conflict, neighborhood violence, domestic violence, climate change, war and militarism, discrimination, video games, homelessness, peace education, and health care.

The training is highly participatory and does not depend on reading a book or lectures. It draws upon the wisdom, experience and talents of all the participants and on the skills and knowledge of trainers. Mutual learning occurs through storytelling, meditation, small group sharing, brainstorming, role plays, thought-provoking exercises, music and movement. CCP offers training on nonviolence principles, analysis of social change and community-building, skills for peacemaking, and resources. Every group chooses and plans concrete projects for change.


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Phil Stoltzfus, Interim Executive Director
Creating a Culture of Peace
P.O. Box 22217

Robbinsdale, MN  55422

phone:  847-790-4CCP (4227)
email:  info@creatingacultureofpeace.org