RAGFP Peacebuilder Club and District 5550 Forge Impactful Community Partnerships for Peace in Canada 

The Rotary Club of Winnipeg is a RAGFP Peacebuilder Club. Their club motto is: “The club that made Rotary International in 1910.” They are the very first Rotary club formed outside of the United States.

They work closely with other Rotary clubs throughout Rotary District 5550 and forge Rotary/community partnerships that impact the entire nation of Canada in positive peace. Rotarian Action Group for Peace (RAGFP) Board Member David Newman is a member of this Rotary club and provides outstanding leadership in developing peacebuilding projects and initiatives in District 5550 that serve as blueprints for Rotarian Peacebuilder Clubs and Peacebuilder Districts worldwide. Canada surged from #5 last year to #2 on our list of RAGFP membership countries this year, in large part, thanks to their efforts in Rotarian peacebuilding.

The Rotary Club of Winnipeg is a RAGFP Peacebuilder Club.

Rotarians in District 5550 (comprising provinces of Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and portions of Ontario) formed an alliance with other Canadian community leaders known as World Peace Partners (WPP) 13 years ago, and this Rotary/community alliance is now an international model for all Rotarian peacebuilders. Their peace initiatives focus on the value of human rights, comprehensive peace education, and include, Peace Days 365 including Festival of Peace and Compassion, an annual festival of events celebrating of the United Nation’s annual International Day of Peace. This Peace Days Festival is a nearly month-long schedule of daily events leading up to, and extending beyond, September 21st each year. The entire community of Winnipeg and District 5550/WPP is involved in hosting peace-centered events that focus Canadians upon shared values of human dignity, compassion for one another, and respect for our environment.

David also serves on the board of Honouring Indigenous Peoples (HIP). Rotarian peacebuilders in Canada formed HIP in partnership and consultation with indigenous citizens in Canada. This group is “honouring indigenous people by supporting their educational efforts and encouraging all Canadians to be aware of indigenous issues, history, and culture.”

District 5550/WPP premiered and promoted a reality mini-series produced in Winnipeg called, First Contact, conceived creatively to build bridges between distant communities within Canada. Discussion guides were presented at Peace Days Festival events and show producers answered questions at a Peace Days premiere in Winnipeg before it aired on Canadian TV network APTN in Fall 2018. The mini-series trailer alone received over 2.7 million views on social media, and the reality TV show sparked sincere conversations about First Nations in Canada and around the world, calling international attention to the dignity of indigenous peoples everywhere.

Watch the First Contact Series Trailer 

Rotarian peacebuilders in District 5550 helped spark a worldwide conversation about Indigenous Peoples. Follow the smash hit mini-series, First Contact, on Facebook Here

“Rotary International District 5550 World Peace Partners inspires, promotes and facilitates in collaboration with other organizations locally, regionally and globally grassroots understanding, goodwill, peace and compassionate actions through education, example and service above self. District 5550 is an evolving international centre for peacebuilding human rights and compassionate action.” Visit their website. The energy these RAGFP members provide in peace through service, their passion for human rights and peace education, their community organizing abilities, along with their skillful communication of Rotarian peace values, combine to make Canada one of the most peaceful nations on earth according to the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP).

Learn about Rotary District 5550/WPP’s Current Peacebuilding Initiatives

Rotary Adventure in Human Rights (RAHR)

Emerging Issues in Human Rights (EIHR) HR-2600

UNESCO Peace Education in Schools

Peace Days 365 Festival of Peace and Compassion

These initiatives helped launch Canada’s very first interdisciplinary Master of Human Rights program to be offered at The University of Manitoba beginning in September 2019. Required courses will include 9 credits in human rights theory, research methods and law. All students must complete a total of 18 course credits plus a thesis or a practicum and major research project in Human Rights. Funds are already being raised in District 5500 to provide a Human Rights Scholarship to worthy candidates.

RAGFP Board Member David Newman (left) and Rotary Peace Fellow Eduardo da Costa (2nd to right) “raise the peace flag” with community leaders in Winnipeg. Raising the peace flag is just one of the multitudes of traditions these Rotarian peacebuilders have established throughout Canada.

Rotarians in Winnipeg and District 5550 are outstanding supporters of Rotary Peace Centers. Rotary Peace Fellows in Winnipeg include Noelle de Pape, Abdi Ahmed, and RAGFP member Eduardo da Costa. These Peace Fellows help recruit and prepare Rotary Peace Fellowship applicants throughout their Rotary district.

Watch the District 5550/WPP Peace Fellow Application Video

We hope you visit all Rotary Club of Winnipeg, District 5550, and World Peace Partners links provided in this article and discover their blueprints for Rotarian peacebuilding. This report highlights only a fraction of their outstanding peace initiatives and projects. Rotarians in Winnipeg and District 5550 created an international center for peace and foster a culture of peace throughout Canada. This RAGFP Peacebuilder Club sets the highest standard of excellence in Rotarian peacebuilding and provides energy and ideas that all RAGFP Peacebuilder Clubs can emulate.

RAGFP honors our Board Member David Newman for his outstanding leadership, and we celebrate all RAGFP members in Canada who bolted their country into the #2 spot on our list of member countries this year. Will Canada be #1 on next year?