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The latest news and events from the Welsh Centre for International Affairs. Update your profile to receive the e-news in Welsh. 

Save the Children's Gareth Owen on getting into humanitarian work and the Syria crisis


 

The WCIA and Hub Cymru Africa hosted an evening with Gareth Owen, the Humanitarian Director of Save the Children, at the Temple of Peace on Tuesday 21 March in two separate events.

Originally from Powys, Gareth has worked at Save the Children for 15 years, where he leads a diverse department of more than 200 humanitarian staff. He has led operational responses in every major emergency over the past decade, notably the Iraq conflict, the Asian tsunami and Cyclone Nargis.

The first event was focused around forming a career in humanitarian work. Gareth, a highly experienced humanitarian professional whose work has spanned many different crisis and continents, spoke to a large audience about how to forge a career in international development.

He spoke about the challenges of humanitarian work and the atrocities he saw in conflict. 

"Humanitarian jobs are not glamorous. It can be very catastrophic, you need to be passionate about what you're doing and be persistent....Determination can be the only way, sometimes it's like living in a horrible movie but you need to continually poses a good character."

"Be humble and energetic and get on with the job, embrace culture differences and be compassionate with people where you're delivering that service."

He particularly noted the importance of staying optimistic: "As a humanitarian worker you are paid to be an optimist, it's a key trait to have. We cannot despair but let's be optimistic"

The second event, later in the evening was centred around the impact of the Syrian war on Syrian children's wellbeing and rights. He spoke of study findings that 50% of children were unable to attend school.

After the talk on Syria, Gareth Owen gave a message of hope and action. You can see the video here. For pictures of the event click here


Welsh National Book of Remembrance on display at Narberth Museum



Having visited different venues across Wales in 2016, including the National Library of Aberystwyth and Caernarfon Castle, the Welsh National Book of Remembrance for WW1 is now in Narberth Museum

Available to visit until mid April, the book which documents names of 35,000 service personnel who died in battle, is accompanied by an exhibition and a programme of events to reflect the impact WW1 had on communities in Wales. Volunteer workshops, art installations, and a talk on War Poetry by local historian Terry John, are just some of the events taking place. 

Narberth Museum also have a digital Instagram exhibition where they are tweeting and instagramming quotes and pictures from their collection.

Local Pembrokeshire soldiers stories are available to read at the exhibition. Ffion Fielding, Exhibition and Engagement Officer at Wales for Peace said: "It is these individual stories that help us to understand the plight of the thousands of lives lost, and provide a unique opportunity to capture the human side of war."

The exhibition hopes to bring people together to celebrate shared experiences and feelings of a community through the creation of a new book, "The Narberth Scrapbook", where experiences of both local soldiers and civilians will be recorded. 

To find out more about the history of the Book, click here or you can view a digital copy of the Book here. You can find more details about the Exhibition at Narbeth Museum here.

Taking a break to celebrate 13 years of Fair Trade Cardiff 

Cardiff is the World’s First Fair Trade Capital City and staff at Hub Cymru Africa, WCIA, and UNA exchange enjoyed a fair trade break in celebration on March 8 at the Temple of Peace.

Fair Trade Cardiff organised a 13-hour Fairtrade birthday break, encouraging groups to take an hour out of their day to raise awareness of the issue that farmers who produce our food are still not earning enough. 

Between the hours of 8am and 9pm on Wednesday 8th March 2017, groups such as Hub Cymru Africa, Oxfam Cymru, Cardiff Council amongst many others got involved. 

Hub Cymru Africa used their Fairtrade Fortnight break at the Temple of Peace to talk to Dyborn, from Malawi, a fair-trade producer with Liberation Nuts and Kilombero rice, to learn about fair-trade in Malawi and how unfair trade impacts lives. 

Low prices paid to farmers can mean that farmers can only afford to feed their families once a day and unable to afford medical care. 

For more information on Fair Trade Cardiff click here. 

‘Young People Voicing Peace’: unique opportunity 
for schools to get involved in Wales' peace heritage


Wales for Peace, in partnership with the National Assembly for Wales and Ffotogallery, is organising a national schools’ conference in the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay on 20 September, 2017. 

They are looking for 6 schools to get involved to develop and showcase work that brings Wales’ peace heritage to life, in particular focusing on international solidarity, the impact of war and the contribution of women in their local community.

They will research stories of individuals and groups who have stood for peace in the last hundred years, drawing parallels with contemporary situations, and relating them creatively through words and visuals.

This is a unique opportunity for budding journalists, photographers and film-makers, as they will be developing  stories around historical events and characters related to peace, based on local research, using creativity, photographic and journalistic skills. 

For more information on the project and how to get involved, click here.

Belief into Action: Wales for Peace's new exhibition on the resistance of war

The new exhibition from Wales for Peace explores why many conscientious objectors chose to resist conscription in the First World War and how this has transformed Welsh life and society.

The exhibition looks at the problems many objectors faced as they resisted, and the legacy of those actions that still remain to this day, in particular how people in Wales have followed their belief with actions in the search for peace. 

Wales for peace are hoping that the exhibition will visit many communities in Wales and will be supported by digital resources, including the Pearce Register of Conscientious Objectors - a fascinating database showing the records of some 860 Welsh men who took their case for exemption from conscription to a military tribunal.

The project was funding through the Welsh Government’s Cymru’n Cofio Wales Remembers 1914-1918 programme. 

The exhibition will be touring around the UK and is set to be on display next in Trinity St Davids University in Lampeter, this May.

It has already been on display at St Davids Uniting Church in Pontypridd, see pictures here.

For more information on the exhibition, how to contribute or host the exhibition, please click here. 

New workshops for schools on the refugee crisis are now available

CEWC, the education arm of WCIA, are offering workshops on the continuing refugee crisis, which will be delivered by Catrin Wager, the new Education Officer at CEWC. 

There currently around 65.3 million people who have been forcibly displaced worldwide.

The workshops are ideal to support learners to become ‘ethical and informed citizens of Wales and the world’ and provides an excellent opportunity to bring expertise in global learning into schools.

Catrin said: "The issue of asylum and refugees is a powerful and emotive topic which really divides opinion. By tackling it head on, we will not only be engaging learners with this complex and controversial topic, but we will also be developing key skills such as analysis, critical thinking and communication."

For more information and how to book, click here.

Hire the Temple of Peace

Hire our prestigious venue in the heart of Cardiff for conferences, exhibitions, wedding receptions and much more. 

More information and availability.


Annual Report 2015-16
 

Our Events 

No Limits!! - Youth and International Development, 3 April, Swansea. More information.

Shared Learning Event: Health Links with Sub-Saharan Africa, 13 April, Wrexham Medical Institute. More information.

Uganda Day! 28 April, Tempe of Peace, Cardiff. More information.

Other events

Wales as a Nation of Sanctuary Conference, 27 April, Temple of Peace, Cardiff. More information. 

Music for More In Common, 28 April, Menai Bridge. More information.

Blog

Visit to the Holocaust Memorial. Read.

A reflection on the positive developments the world has seen in 2016. Read

Albert E Rudall - Conscientious Objector. Read.

International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. Read

The Shepherd Family of Ystalyfera and Pontypridd in the First World War. Read

The story of E. P. Jones, Pontypridd. Read

Annual Law Lecture: How global trading rules are contributing to Africa’s deindustrialization and what we can do about it. Read.

A Welsh spanner in the works? Brexit: the story so far. Read.

Read the latest blogs from our contributors.

Event resources

What will Brexit Mean? Storify and blog.

Annual Law Lecture: How global trading contributes to the industrialization of Africa. Photos and blog

#LightaCandle16 - International Day to Eliminate Violence Against Women. storify and blog

EU Referendum: The Issues Debate Wales, 8 June. View event report.

‘Charity begins at home?’ Talk from the Chief Executive of Oxfam GB, Mark Goldring, 24 February. Post event report, photos, video of routable discussion, video of Mark Goldring talk.

‘The Role of the Commonwealth in the 21st Century’ Talk from Baroness Scotland, Secretary General of the Commonwealth, 22 March. Event story.
 
‘Contextualising Islam in 21st Century Britain’ Talk from Professor Grace Davie, 13 April. Event report and pictures

'Syria, ISIL and the Middle East: The US Perspective' Talk from Thomas Williams, Minister-Counselor for Political Affairs at the US Embassy, 28 April. Event pictures and report

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