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violence.org), is their shared commitment to Connecticut’s youth and to each child’s future. The stories of bullying incidents range from severe street and gun violence to online bullying, suicide, and to subtle but soul damaging acts of silencing and exclusion. The question everyone continues to ask is: “How do we heal these issues and create more compassionate and cohesive schools, neighborhoods and communities?” The answer evolves and deepens over the weeks of training. We must educate our youth about peacebuilding skills, the methods of nonviolence, restorative justice, and the values and behaviors that create and nurture compassionate communities.

What constitutes a Compassionate Community?

Beyond Bullying: Peacebuilding to Create Compassionate Schools and Communities by Lisa Worth Huber

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he room at Southern Connecticut State University is packed with educators, community leaders, government officials and active citizens. Some work in the toughest neighborhoods in Connecticut while others work in more affluent towns in the state. The commonality of all participants in this Kingian Nonviolence Certification Training, led by the Connecticut Center for Nonviolence (ctNon-

In compassionate communities, peacebuilding flourishes and reconciliation is a way of life. It is where we find healing and good will, interconnectedness and cohesion. The Charter for Compassion has established a Compassionate Cities initiative in which Danbury is a participant. To learn more, visit CharterforCompassion.org/City-Campaigns. One of the challenges schools and communities face around issues of bullying is the tendency to address the symptoms rather than the root causes of these problems. We need to: • Educate children and teens to identify all forms of bullying behavior. • Model moral courage by standing up for what is just and kind. • Create a system of communication in schools whereby students can anonymously report their concerns without the fear of retaliation from perpetrators. • Establish safety measures within homes, schools and communities to protect everyone from all forms of bullying and violent acts. Essential to the success of transforming bullying behaviors is the encouragement and development of each student to shift their behavior from a passive bystander to one of an active peacebuilder. This requires training of teachers and staff in methods that create and maintain peaceful and compassionate classrooms and schools. Skills such as mediation, restorative justice, dialogue and empathic listening are vital to effectively address bullying or any other forms of disruption or violence. These lifetime skills will enhance all aspects

Celebration Service Sundays at 10:30 am Our mission is to continually discover, demonstrate, and educate that our source of Good is God within. Our Ongoing Events

Rev. Shawn Moninger 3 Main St, 2nd Floor Norwalk, CT 06851 (203) 855-7922 www.unitycenterps.org

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Celebration Service, Sun at 10:30 am Open Mic Night, 3rd Sat at 7 pm

Reiki Healing Circle, 1st Thu at 7 pm Purls of Wisdom, 2nd Sat at 6:30 pm

Summer Retreat “Deep in the Depths of MY Soul” - August 10-15th Meditation, Yoga, Spirit-Filled Music, Open Discussion Workshops, 24 Hours in Silence, Drumming Circle, Free Time, Small Group Time, Laughter, Entertainment, Gourmet Meals, and more! A few spots left!

Fairfield County Edition

natural awakenings

Natural Awakenings Fairfield County August 2014  
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