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Swords into plowshares

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Swords into Plowshares is the blog of the Peacemaking Program and the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations of the Presbyterian Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

Seeking peace. Striving for justice. Together.

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December 1, 2015

16 Days of Activism - Day 7: World HIV AIDS Awareness Day

by Paul Olson

On World AIDS Day, UNAIDS calls us to get on the fast track to end AIDS.

Girls who live with a disability and who have been made vulnerable face more violence in schools than do girls who are not living with a disability. The same is true for children affected by HIV/AIDS. Misperceptions and false information about HIV/AIDS increases the stigma on those who have it and changes the nature of everyday interactions at school. Children affected by HIV and AIDS, orphans and children from families affected by HIV and AIDS are at higher risk of bullying, sexual violence and exploitation in school.

Girl’s education leads to a number of positive indicators that lead  out of poverty. One such indicator is the reduced risk of contracting and spreading HIV/AIDS.

Learn more about Presbyterians at work to stop sexual violence and domestic violence.

Learn about the PC(USA)’s Educate a Child initiative that has an international and a domestic component.

Find a resource packet for World AIDS Day from the Presbyterian AIDS Network.

Categories: HIV/AIDS, Human Rights, Justice, Women

Tags: educate a child, education, gender-based violence, hiv/aids, intern, paul olson, rutgers, say no to violence, say no unite, sustainable development

December 1, 2015

16 Days of Activism - Day 6: What Is a White Male to Do?

by Robert Arrington

As a white, cisgender, heterosexual male, I do not have much first hand experience in undergoing oppression. At least in the United States, I am in the majority of most social categories, so I have been in a position of privilege for all of my life. Because of this, it can appear disingenuous for a white male to join or be a leading voice for a movement brought about to end oppression, especially since some white males are in positions of power and are the agents of oppression. I think this fear of at best appearing disingenuous ...

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November 29, 2015

16 Days of Activism - Day 5: Advent and the Role of Mindful Teachers

by Paul Olson

First Sunday of Advent Lectionary Readings: Jer 33:14-16, Ps. 25:1-10, 1 Thess. 3:9-13, Luke 21:25-36

On the first Sunday of advent, and on day 5 of the 16 day campaign to of activism against gender-based violence, we are reminded and instructed on the importance of teachers. One factor contributing to the violence against girl students is teacher absenteeism. Harvard and World Bank researchers conducted unannounced visits to primary schools in rural India. Due to a number of factors, they found a quarter of the teachers absent and only half of those present were ...

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November 28, 2015

Observe World AIDS Day - December 1

December 1 is World AIDS Day. Here are ways to plan observances for the day

Download the World AIDS Day packet by the Presbyterian AIDS Network

Study Becoming an HIV and AIDS Competent Church: Prophetic Witness and Compassionate Action - a report and study guide

Order The Changing Face of HIV/AIDS - a free video

Find ideas for World AIDS Day from the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance

Get Wrapped! (learn about the Wrap Project)

Check out other resources from the PC(USA) International AIDS Ministries

Learn more at UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS

World AIDS Day, December 1 ...

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November 28, 2015

16 Days of Activism - Day 4: Let’s dream: What if we educated all our girls?

by Paul Olson

Violence against girls in schools reduces the number of girls in school. Why is this important? Poverty, sickness, and sustainable development depends on education first.

The Global Education First Initiative reports that if we educated our girls…

·      12 million children would be saved from stunted growth.

·      64% fewer early marriages

·      59% fewer early pregnancies

·      10% increase in wage earnings for every 1 year of schooling

·      49% fewer child deaths if all women completed secondary school

·      66% decrease in maternal mortality if all women completed primary education

Spokesperson for girls’ education and Nobel peace prize winner, Malala Yousafza ...

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