Guyana joins rest of world in observing International Day of Peace

first_imgJust over a week ago, the Guyana Equality Forum (GEF) held its third annual “Peace Day and Fun Day” in observance of the United Nations’ International Day of Peace under the theme, “The Right to Peace: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70.”The Fun Day, which was held at the Guyana National Service (GNS) Ground, saw the participation of members of the GEF organisations and Guyanese from all walks of life. UN Resident Coordinator in Guyana, Mikiko Tanaka delivered opening remarks and officially declared the games open.The UN Resident Coordinator referred to a recent report published by the Georgetown Law Human Rights Institute this year titled “Trapped: Cycles ofSASOD Director Joel SimpsonViolence and Discrimination against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Persons in Guyana”.Tanaka stated: “The “Trapped” report documents the heart-breaking plight of LGBT Guyanese. The discrimination and bullying that people experience on a daily basis because of their gender and sexual orientation are unacceptable. The act of discrimination or bullying disrespects the dignity of the affected persons, and violates their right to life, liberty, and security.“Furthermore, it fosters hate, prejudice, intolerance and division in society. Ignorance and indifference provide the fertile ground for hate and discrimination to grow like a cancer. It is so important to foster the voice and acts of conscience, reason, courage, compassion and understanding to curb this social cancer,” the UN Representative pleaded.Teams from civil society in Berbice dominated the games, including United Bricklayers, who emerged as the champion team of day, and Comforting Hearts, who placed third at the end of the games. Both groups are based in New Amsterdam.Family Awareness, Consciousness Togetherness (FACT) from Corriverton came in fourth place, while Guyana’s Society Against Sexual Orientation DiscriminationUnited Nations Resident Coordinator in Guyana, Mikiko Tanaka(SASOD) placed second.The top three teams were awarded trophies. Competitors placing first to third received individual medals for all of the activities, which included a series of sprint and relay races, along with novelty games such as lime and spoon, jockey race, sack race, buns-eating competition.The third annual GEF Fun Day provided an opportunity for diverse civil society groups and Guyanese of all walks of life to come together through sports and entertainment to build peace, unity, and social cohesion.This signature GEF event promotes Guyanese civil society working in unison for respect and protection of the rights of all people, regardless of race, age, religion, class, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, disability status, health status, or any other human characteristic, in keeping with theUnited Bricklayers from New Amsterdam (Joseph Allen photo)mandate of the network.The GEF is a network of civil society groups working cohesively to achieve equal rights and justice for all Guyanese. It currently has 26 registered member organisations from across the coastal regions of the country. SASOD Guyana serves as the secretariat of the GEF. (Brandon Corlette)last_img read more