Dark clouds of war gathering all over the world.
Fear invading ordinary lives every day in all corners of the world.
Violence seeping like black smoke into every part of our lives.
Law-abiding folks murdered by marauders in uniforms even where there are no formal wars.
Media escalating coverage to a level never seen before.
Fear on the streets in every city or township.
You can be driving or walking, and you see red lights behind you, and that bile that gurgles up from your gut as that not so friendly cop looks into your car window, or pounds on your door and demands proof or your existence.
We see photos and stories about murder and mayhem everyday broadcast into our lives on every device.
How do we reach the youth of the world and let them know there is hope for a peaceful future?
The Peacemaker Corps Association (PCA), the NGO I founded over 17 years ago to teach youth at risk how to use words and pictures to solve their problems without violence, has created a bully pulpit to provide youth around the world a voice to help create the paradigm shift: hence, the 1st Annual Peace in the Streets Global Film Festival.
Today, September 9th, 2014 at the United Nations Headquarters in NYC -- in conjunction with the President of the General Assembly's Forum on the "Culture of Peace" the Peacemaker Corps will honor 10 youths who created and submitted videos on how THEY would make Peace in the Streets.
Today we award top Prizes to three age categories. These Rays of hope and streams of sunshine through the dark clouds are a small but important step that the PCA will nurture and support to grow into a movement lead by the world's youth. As their voices grow louder and their numbers grow in strength, we will begin to drown out the drums of war and violence.
We will continue reaching out to the youth of the world to let their voices be heard! Today's event is just the beginning!