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Canadian Voice of Women for Peace (VOW) sends Young women peacemakers to United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.

March 5, 2013

Five young women who attended the VOW's first Peacemaker Summer Camps in 2012 thanks to a generous grant from the Canadian Auto Workers union (CAW ) have arrived in New York to take part in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women, 57th session March 4-15. Canadian Voice of Women for Peace is Canada's only National women's peace organization, and has been advocating for peace for over 50 years. This year VOW has 20 delegates at the commission, including the five young women peacemakers. Mary's Pence provided a grant to help with travel expenses for our young women peacemakers.

The Peacemaker Summer Camps, held in both Ontario and British Columbia included peace building workshops and sessions for the young women to learn about peace building strategies, the history of VOW along with enabling each individual to share their passion, interest and personal stories relating to peace, justice and women's rights.
"There are a lot of problems with how we treat women in our society. I think it's good to start making a change when you are young," said 15-year-old Maddy Murphy of Nelson, B.C. She and fellow Nelson resident Lara VonMaydell, raised money in their community for their trip to the UN, and will give a presentation at the United Church's Peace Festival upon their return. Kasha Slavner, Adrienne Kalmaba and Yasur Al-Bahrani of Toronto held a fund-raising dinner with entertainment by women performers to help fund their journey, and will give a presentation on April 10th at the Friend's Quaker Meeting House, 60 Lowther Street on their return. They are now in New York at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women. This year VOW has 20 delegates at the commission including 2 men. This is the first time that men are part of the VOW delegation.

Janis Alton, the Toronto-based co-chair of the Voice of Women, has attended the annual UN event since 1990 "The theme of this year's UN Commission is the elimination of violence against women and girls, a problem that is best addressed by changing our culture and it is very important to engage the young women in our communities - these new peacemakers are the voices of today and of tomorrow."

These young women will be attending information sessions and meeting with other women from around the world who are actively working in their countries for the rights of women. They are blogging regularly and using social media to share their experiences.

VOW will host an event entitled CONFRONTING MILITARY SEXUAL VIOLENCE, Challenging Militarized Security. Tamara Lorincz, Halifax based lawyer and Board member of Canadian Voice of Women for Peace will speak on Canada's Invisible War: Exposing Violence Against Women and Children in the Military. Ms. Lorincz says it is imperative that we express to Status of Women Minister Ambrose, Prime Minister Harper and other members of Parliament our concerns about violence against women in the Canadian military.

For more information contact Canadian Voice of Women National office:
203-761 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1
telephone: 416-603-7915
mobile: 416-731-6605

For more information contact:
Sandra Ruch
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace
Phone: 416-603-7915
Cell: 416-716-4010

Lyn Adamson
Canadian Voice of Women for Peace
Phone: 416-603-7915
Cell: 416-731-6605

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Canadian Voice of Women for Peace


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