Ecuador: festival for peace to the “Middle of the World”

20 April 2016

The 2016 edition of the United World Week will have its center in Ecuador, dedicated to intercultural, peace and unity in the diversity. Planned itineraries to know and enrich the culture of the different ethnic communities of the country.

The 2016 edition of the United World Week will be Quito, capital of Ecuador, the focus of all the events taking place simultaneously in the world.
The title of the event is: LINK CULTURES – A Camino para la Paz. With the participation of young people from South American and European countries, the main theme of United World Week in 2016 will be about interculturalism, that is, to enter into a dialogue with the different cultures and to acknowledge all the same dignity that makes us equal.

Ecuador is a South American country located strategically at “Middle of the world.” With a population of about 15 million people, it is divided into four main regions: the coast, the sierra, the east and the Galapagos Islands. The country has been internationally recognized for the enormous biodiversity of its flora and fauna, as well as for the multi-cultural population. Since 2008, the Ecuadorian Constitution speaks of interculturalism defining characteristic aspects of the country, as well as the defense and promotion of the “Sumak kawsay” (In Kichwa, indigenous language, that means the “good life” that is the human being’s balance with the nature) and the rights of nature.

For all this, the United World Week 2016 will unfold in two main moments to highlight fraternity through multiculturalism. It will begin with the Itinerant School (from 1 to 6 May), during which young people will visit some regions of Ecuador in order to make a direct experience of interculturalism in different Ecuadorian communities, work and live with the locals, learn the deeper reality of the South American country.

Participants can choose between two different proposals: Coast-Sierra and East-Sierra. The first, includes the provinces of Imbabura and Esmeraldas, in which the young participants will come into contact with communities of Gualapuro, Agato and Peguche; the second, includes the provinces of Pastaza, Tungurahua and Bolivar, to meet the community of Shiwacocha, Kisapincha, Salasaka and Bolívar. Each path has the aim of building relationships at various levels: with nature, with others and with themselves. In this way, young people, with the people of the place, will be the protagonists of real coexistence workshops where they can share, learn, experience and witness of the work of these communities and a real exchange of gifts between cultures.

SMU2016 01In the second moment, on May 7th, a festival for peace will be realized in the touristic place “Middle of the World” Ecuador icon known on an international Level: it will be a great event that will be attended by young people from different cultures, religions, social classes, with the aim of highlighting the brotherhood in an intercultural context and commit to live the peace and unity in respect for differences, through the practice of the Golden Rule which invites us to “Do unto others as you would do unto you”. The Youth for a United World of Ecuador have also promoted two competitions, one for music and one for photography and their dream aims high: to create a Permanent “School of Peace”.
At the same time, in many cities around the world will host the United World Week 2016, in different ways, where young people will be seen as protagonists and builders of peace.


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