IIPT, International Institute for Peace through Tourism Australia and SKAL International Hobart Australia, inducted the City of Hobart – the capital city of the State of Tasmania, Australia, into the IIPT/SKAL Peace Cities Project.
Mayor of Hobart, Councilor Anna Reynolds, was welcomed by Alfred Merse, SKAL Australian National President and Gail Parsonage, IIPT President Australia, to the worldwide network of IIPT/SKAL Cities of Peace.
Skal International and IIPT realized that their values and organizations could support a positive and dynamic concept of PEACE going beyond the traditional passive notion of peace simply being the absence of conflict.
Under this project, appropriate cities that were aspiring, or currently actively demonstrating key elements of what would be considered the credentials of a Peaceful City, would be invited to join a worldwide collection of Cities that want to identify themselves as an IIPT/SKAL City of Peace.
The key elements of a Peaceful City are to actively promote values of tolerance, non-violence, gender equality, human rights, youth empowerment, environmental awareness, and sustainable social and economic development.
In addition to Hobart now being designated a City of Peace, an IIPT/SKAL Peace Promenade has also being designed to be incorporated into a new development at Macquarie Point, Hobart. This will be the first time that an area is being specifically designed to incorporate and highlight the values of Peace and Reconciliation into a new major city development and tourism precinct area.
Macquarie Point Development Design
The Hobart IIPT/SKAL Peace Promenade will be added to the Global network of iconic tourism landmarks, which demonstrate the commitment of extending the hand of friendship and peace and welcoming all peoples. It will showcase Tasmania’s strengths in arts, culture, design, tourism, and science and will educate visitors to the cultural, environmental, and reconciliation values of peaceful travel, and establish a focal point for the ceremony and other community-based events.
Sarah Clark, a horticulturist for the Macquarie Point Development Project, where the Peace Promenade will be incorporated, was given the mission to produce and design the initial choice of plants and trees. Space will include a plaque of the IIPT Credo of the Peaceful Traveller and she said, “We chose white flowers as a fitting symbol for peace and the olive trees are a universal sign for peace. These are mixed with Australian native plants that are Australian aboriginal medicinal and edible plants and flowers which merge into the peace promenade. I incorporated the pond for a feeling of tranquillity with the sound of flowing water. I used recycled wood from the Macquarie Point site for the seating to fit with our war on waste”.
The Peace Promenade, whilst temporarily in wicking beds, will eventually be planted into the soil as a feature of the Macquarie Point Development and a new tourism precinct.
SKAL Australian President, Alfred Merse said he was very pleased that his vision of Hobart joining the Lone Pine Peace Park in the Blue Mountains, and Q Station in Sydney Harbour National Park, as the third Australian IIPT/SKAL Peace Parks Project. Gail Parsonage said “more than ever, in our very troubled times, that we should continue to strive for the Tourism Industry to lead the world in Building a Culture of Peace.”