Listen to the third Peace Alliance Call in our “Call to Calm Series.” The series explores different ways we can nurture a more peaceful and respectful way of engaging each other, thriving in diversity, and collectively benefiting from this election season (if you missed it, you can listen to the audio from our inspiring call with Stephen Dinan here). This call celebrates 15 years of advocacy for a U.S. Department of Peace[building] (DoP) with our guest speaker, Rita Marie Johnson.
Rita Marie was instrumental in the eventual inclusion of peacebuilding in the federal government through Costa Rica’s Ministry of Justice and Peace. In 2004, Rita Marie also began offering what she coined the “Connection Practice” in Costa Rican public schools. Now close to 1500 teachers have been trained, impacting 40,000 students each year. Annual evaluations reveal that bullying, intolerance, conflicts, violence and misconduct reports have decreased.
In addition to an inspiring Call to Calm conversation with Rita Marie, we will also share DoP Campaign updates, 2016 plans and hear how we might apply lessons learned from Rita Marie’s journey to our U.S. campaign.
More about Rita Marie Johnson
Rita Marie is the founder of the Rasur Foundation International, an author, educator and innovator. After moving to Costa Rica in 1993, Rita Marie sought a method of social-emotional learning that could prevent violence in schools. Her research led to the realization that empathy is most efficiently attained through a conscious connection to feelings and needs, and insight is most reliably accessed through heat-brain coherence. She discovered a synergy between empathy and insight that maximizes social and emotional intelligence, eliminates unnecessary suffering and leads to life-enriching choices. This epiphany resulted in the Connection Practice, which is extremely powerful, and scale-able, in school settings. (See www.rasurinternational.org and Completely Connected: Uniting Our Empathy and Insight for Extraordinary Results by Rita Marie Johnson.)
In 2004, Rita Marie began offering the Connection Practice in Costa Rican public schools. Now close to 1500 teachers have been trained, impacting 40,000 students each year. Annual evaluations reveal that bullying, intolerance, conflicts, violence and misconduct reports have decreased. Rita Marie also initiated a bill in Costa Rica’s legislative assembly in 2006 to establish a Ministry for Peace and it passed in 2009. Rita Marie now lives in Northern California.
Special Note: If you may be able to join us for lobbying in DC this September or otherwise would like to be kept informed about the DoP Campaign, please email Nancy@peacealliance.org with your name and phone number (optional) and we’ll keep you informed monthly.
Thank you for your advocacy and/or interest in peacebuilding.
All of us on the National Department of Peacebuilding Organizing Committee…