As the second session of Peace Through Sport (PTS) came to an end, it was impressive to witness the positive impact 78 young people from Lebanon and America had on their local communities. Participants of the second of eight rounds of the Peace Through Sport program came together in January to improve their communication and problem-solving skills while developing a respect for diversity. Youth and their teachers completed activities from the Coaches Across Continents curriculum, embraced their cultural similarities and differences, participated in four virtual calls with guest speakers from the world of sports, developed and implemented impactful service-learning projects in their communities, and used WhatsApp as a platform to reflect on meaningful issues while finding their voice.
During the final virtual call, students shared the projects they developed and implemented. What an impressive group of young people they are!
Participants from Lebanon identified an area of great need in their community involving the prison system which is full of people who should not be there and who are living in poor living conditions within the prison. There are people in prison because the judicial system is not processing their cases in a timely manner, because they are not able to pay their fines, or are not able to secure release warrants. PTS students met with their principal and are working with the prison to arrange a visit to the facility and will be supplying needed items to the prisoners. The impact of their project be very important to the men and women being held in the Tyre prison.
Participants from Glenelg Country School developed a project to benefit the homeless population by providing much needed items. Students held a fundraiser at their school to raise money for the purchase of socks, soaps, toothpaste, water bottles, granola bars, and many other personal supplies. They then divided the items into 150 bags that were donated to the several homeless shelters in their local area for distribution.
Participants from Sheppard Pratt identified three areas of concern within their community including guns, drugs and pollution. The three groups researched their specific topics and then took action. The gun stoppers group wrote twenty-five letters to local community leaders including three council members. They set up an anger management group and anti-bullying club within their school setting. The drug busters group created posters raising awareness about drug abuse and displayed them around their school. They also created a peer support group for all the students in their community. The pollution group created posters to hang around the school campus and were able to secure $450 from their school administration. The money used to purchase recycling bins to be used around the school campus. The students at Sheppard Pratt directly impacted the culture at their school of almost 1500 students by educating and providing solutions to three important issues. These programs have been integrated throughout the school.
Congratulations to all of the Peace Through Sport participants. When asked for feedback about the Peace Through Sport program, the general consensus was that we all learned from each other and appreciated the opportunity to learn about different sports and cultures. The impact of the 78 young people who participated in the second session of Peace Through sport benefitted more than 1000 people in their local communities. The power of their impact will be felt for years to come.
If you would like to learn more about the Peace Through Sport, please visit https://www.marshall-legacy.org/peace-through-sport.
To apply for the next session of Peace Through Sport which starts in April, please click the following link. PTS Session 3 Application
Peace Through Sport is generously funded through they US Embassy in Lebanon.