They came by plane, bus, car, ferry, and on foot. Sixty men and women, representing diverse cultures, nations, ages, and languages, traveled to Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, for the Second People’s Summit for Ministries and Departments of Peace held June 19-22, 2006. Speaking with one voice they called on countries around the world to establish government structures whose goal is to work hand-in-hand with civil society – reflecting, building, and sustaining a culture of peace.
Government and civil society delegates from Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, India, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Nepal, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Palestine, the Philippines, Romania, the Solomon Islands, Spain, Uganda, the United Kingdom, and the United States gathered at Victoria’s Royal Roads University to give birth to the Global Alliance for Ministries and Departments of Peace and to pose an effective global and national architecture for peace. Delegates from Cameroon, Congo, and Sri Lanka were unable to attend due to logistical constraints.
In forming the Global Alliance, the Summit plenary established an inter- generational steering committee and five working groups (communications, networking, youth, research and field operations, and finance) to develop and carry out a plan of work up to the next Summit in 2007, which will be hosted by Japan. In its formal Summit Communiqué the Global Alliance affirmed its commitment to partner and cooperate with governments and civil society organisations nationally and globally in promoting peace by peaceful means and recognised the governments of the Philippines and the Solomon Islands, which have already established secretariats and depart- ments for peacebuilding, conflict transformation, and reconciliation, as pioneers and examples to the world.
Following the Summit, delegates traveled together to Vancouver to attend the first World Peace Forum, where the Global Alliance for Ministries and Departments of Peace presented a half-day program on “Creating National Departments of Peace.”