Save The Children – Diversity and Dialogue
Bringing young people from different faiths and backgrounds together
This piece about the Peace Mala was placed on the Save The Children website in January 2006 in their Diversity and Dialogue section.
Peace Mala, Swansea
Peace Mala is an ethically guided ‘non profit taking’ organisation which was set up in 2002 to address the rising prejudice, Islamophobia and religious intolerance post 9/11 in the local community. It was the brainchild of Pam Evans, Head of Religious Studies at Coedae School in Llanelli South Wales, and is a symbolic bracelet made up of coloured beads. Each coloured bead represents a faith or spiritual path and its peace message for the world. The central bead represents the wearer. The Peace Mala reminds wearers to treat others as they would like to be treated and to respect other faiths, beliefs, cultures and lifestyles.
The Peace Mala bracelet continues to be a huge success and has generated interest in interfaith work in the community. Money made from the sale of Peace Malas, kits for making Peace Malas and other Peace Mala products are used to promote the vision of the Peace Mala in schools, youth clubs, churches and spiritual places of all traditions.
Young people have played an active role in the work of Peace Mala since the beginning when students of Pam Evans formed a Youth Team to organise and co-ordinate Peace Mala initiatives. The project has organised and inspired a number of different events in the community, including cultural diversity days, workshops, interviews with the local media and talks and seminars on interfaith issues. Recently it launched the Bespoke Peace Mala and Awards for Youth with the support of the international rock singer Bonnie Tyler.
The Bespoke is a solid silver version of the Peace Mala bracelet designed by two of Wales’s most famous jewellery designers. It is intended that the sale of the Bespoke Peace Malas will fund an annual Award for Youth, where young members of faith groups, schools, youth clubs and other centres of learning can enter the competition to produce a project which shares and promotes the vision of the Peace Mala. The first youth awards are planned to take place in the WUNA Temple of Peace, Cardiff next Autumn.