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BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz board approves Gavel Fund projects for 2017

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November 21, 2016

Charlotte, NC – The grant review committee of the BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz board of directors met in October to review applications submitted for 2017 funding from the Gavel Memorial World Peace Fund*. The Gavel Fund was established by a bequest left by long-term members Victor and Eileen Gavel and was restarted in 2009 after receiving a $200,000 estate gift from Allan Morgan. 

Monies from the fund go toward supporting projects all over the world that serve to gather, equip, and mobilize ordinary people for the work of peace rooted in justice. Below are the approved projects for 2017.  

Within North America

AMEXTRA (Asociación Mexicana de Transformación Rural y Urbana A.C.) will be working to build a culture of nonviolence in marginalized communities in two areas of the State of Mexico (Lomas de San Isidro, Los Reyes and Sierra de Guadalupe, Tultitlan), through the training of 16 local promoters. Those leaders will then share tools with 600 youth and adults to develop their skills for peacebuilding. Keep reading...

A project of Grandview Calvary Baptist Church in Vancouver relates to Canada’s seven-year Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The Commission covered a 150 year period from the 1870s to 1996, when the Canadian government mandated, and churches implemented, a residential school program through which Aboriginal children were removed from their homes and communities and placed in schools that were often deliberately far removed from the influence of their families. Keep reading...

The Mariposas Visitation Program was launched a year ago as a partnership between Mariposas Sin Fronteras and BorderLinks to grow and equip a base of people, locally and nationally, who understand and can take action against criminalization, militarization and mass incarceration as they intersect with immigration and LGBTQ issues. Keep reading...

Outside of North America

The Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies of the Mennonite Brethren Centenary College will receive support for Summer School of Theologies of Life. In this annual program, young theologians, pastors and laity collectively learn theologies of life and seek ways in which local congregations can be communities that promote justice and peace. Keep reading...

Community Action for Development and Integration of Fizi (ACODIF) and the Union of the Baptist Churches in Burundi will be coming together to lead a Conflict Transformation training for church leaders. Burundi has seen 40 years of armed violence and civil war since gaining independence from Belgium in 1962. The conflicts, rooted in political and historical tensions between the ethnic Hutu majority and Tutsi minority populations, have killed more than 300,000 people. Keep reading...

Crossing Lines – Africa will receive funding for "The LGBTQ Investment Year Project.” The primary innovation of the Investment Year Program involves structuring an informal program for LGBTQ youth around Positive Youth Development principles, adapting those principles for unique LGBTQ youth developmental challenges and empowering the youth to actively participate in the LGBTQ transformation movement. Keep reading...

The Kingdom of Peace and Development (KOPAD) will receive assistance for a project called "AMANI NA UNDUGU TUONGEE" which will mobilize politicians, voters and the general public to employ nonviolence and constructive tools as they do political campaigns. Keep reading...

The Pan African Peace Network (PAPNET) will receive a grant for two non-violent struggle workshops in Harare. The project will be an intensive program teaching conflict transformation, especially non-violent techniques for social change, using experiential learning techniques. Keep reading...

Scholarships funds were set aside for the 2018 Global Baptist Peace Conference to be held in Cali, Colombia. The conference is a continuation of a series of global peace conferences that began in 1988 in Sweden. The BPFNA has been a sponsor of all of them (Nicaragua, Thailand, Australia, Italy). Keep reading...


*The Gavel Fund will be nearly spent by the end of 2017. The board of directors is currently discerning whether to continue the fund and, if so, how to replenish it. Members interested in being a part of that discernment process should contact Executive Director LeDayne McLeese Polaski at ledayne@bpfna.org.

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BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz works to gather, equip, and mobilize Baptists to build a culture of peace rooted in justice. BPFNA celebrates and supports the peacemaking work done by Baptist churches in Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the United States by raising their visibility through its publications and website, bringing peacemakers together in regional and international gatherings, and providing resources, speakers, and trainings. BPFNA also actively connects with peacemakers from other traditions, faith-based and secular, to build alliances and unite toward a common goal of witnessing to God’s peace rooted in justice and working together until it comes.



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