LINC Builds Peaceful Communities

Peace TreeEvery November, YMCA LINC classes observe Peace Week. This is an opportunity to explore and celebrate peace in our communities, both on a local and a global scale. With students from nearly 40 different countries, the LINC program offers unique and creative perspectives on the meaning of peace and the power of the individual to create positive change for tomorrow.

Last week, South LINC students and teachers held a special event with the theme of “Building Community, Acting for Peace”. The students explored this theme by participating in a variety of creative activities, such as making origami peace doves and learning how to find inner peace in a meditation workshop. Students also practiced using peaceful vocabulary words, explored how both positive and negative words can affect others, and learned about other cultures through a musical activity. The grand finale, a peaceful flash mob set to John Lennon’s “Imagine”, surprised the passers-by in the Shawnessy YMCA lobby. After the flash mob dispersed, a “Peace Tower” remained in the lobby as a lovely reminder of the day’s events.


Meanwhile, the North LINC students and teachers were hard at work sorting donations at their event, which focused on giving back to the community. Three classrooms were set up to collect and sort items for the Calgary Food Bank, the Women in Need Society, and other local organizations. The students did an excellent job preparing for this by researching what items were needed, and then making signs and posters to explain what to bring to donate (healthy non-perishables), and what to leave at home (sugary snacks and perishable items). Throughout the evening, students wrote message of peace on the “Peace Giving Tree”, and worked together to organize and sort the donations. By the end of the evening, there were three very neatly organized classrooms, completely full of gently used winter clothing, children’s toys, items for newborn babies, and non-perishable donations for the food bank.

It is truly amazing to see how focusing on acts of peace in our community can have such an immediate impact.

Great job, everyone!

Clothing Donations

Food Bank Donations