Mel Lastman Square, 5100 Yonge Street June 1, 2011
Over six hundred children from 20 schools across the GTA gathered at Mel Lastman Square on June 1st to celebrate Toronto’s 6th annual Peace Tree Day. The celebration founded by Mitra Sen, is a festival of peace, diversity, and cultural fusion through the arts led by children and youth. The festival was first proclaimed by Mayor David Miller on June 1, 2006. Peace Tree Day is now celebrated in cities across Canada, India, USA, and England.
This year, Peace Tree Delegates in Toronto participated in intercultural and interfaith workshops, learning about Paper Cranes for Peace, Medicine Wheels: Peace from All
Directions, African Dancing and Drumming, Rangoli, Mexican Mask Making, and much more. The peace and diversity workshops were led by young Peace Tree Ambassadors from elementary schools across the city. Students also experienced the Peace Tree Concert, reflecting Toronto’s diversity and highlighting music and dance from Canada’s many cultures. Performances by youth included African-Brazilian Dance, Chinese Lion Dance, classical Indian Kathak dancing, and songs of peace. Peace Tree Ambassadors from Jammu/Kashmir were also in attendance to share their story of celebrating the Peace Tree Spirit and Peace Tree Day in Jammu/Kashmir. They were presented with the Peace Tree Spirit Award for their outstanding contribution to promoting peace, diversity and unity.
The 6th anniversary of Peace Tree Day was hosted by Peace Tree International, Harmony Movement, and the Toronto District School Board's Office of Student and Community Equity and Safe and Caring Schools, with the generous support of Canadian Immigration and Citizenship.