Peace Boat convened the first oceanic Global Peace Inter-Generational Dialogue (IGD) on the 20th September 2019 during its 102nd Global Voyage. The IGD formed part of Global Peace’s initiative to convene 100 dialogues across 100 cities. With the dialogues typically taking place in cities, a dialogue being held out at sea was a first for Global Peace. The dialogue was guided by the framework of the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The session was moderated by International Voyage Director, Trevor Campbell, and comprised of an international panel of Peace Boat staff members, guest educators and volunteers. The discussions reflected strategically on the following SDGs: No poverty (SDG 1), Zero hunger (SDG 2), Good Health and Well Being (SDG 3), Clean Water and Sanitation (SDG 6), Reduced Inequalities (SDG 10), and Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions (SDG 17). Various topics were addressed with Guest Director Ann Mayeda, expressing the need for support of a student-driven education system, citing the need to shift the system from being largely teacher-led to being more integrated with learners. Peace Boat Volunteer English teacher on the onboard language programme, Ryan Gilbride addressed his home country of Northern Ireland’s long history of conflict and inequality. Former U.S. Army, Colonel Wright, who had served her country for several decades, resigned from her position as a diplomat in opposition to the U.S. war in Iraq shared her experiences from a military perspectives and highlighted the work she continues to do through groups like Women’s Boat to Gaza, Veterans for Peace and Women Cross DMZ.
As reflected by the Peace Boat, ‘the 17 SDGs and 169 targets provide a practical way to consider global struggles from individual perspectives.’ This resonates with the Global Peace goal to continue the IGDs across the world and present a platform for dialogue about the development challenges that will impact our future and ways in which we must contribute to building a sustainable peace.
The dialogue was successful in part to the collective effort from the Peace Boat team, the active panel and participants. We look forward to our next IGD to take place out in the ocean as it plans its new voyages in 2020.