Rotary Wyndham Harbour’s Peace Essay Project captured the interest of many other Rotary Clubs in 2020, the Centenary Year of Rotary in Australia and New Zealand.  Clubs and schools in Victoria, New South Wales and the ACT, as well as several Rotary Peace Fellows took part in the project. To celebrate the work of this year’s primary school contributors, a joyous ceremony was held on Zoom on the 21st September, the International Day of Peace.

With the intention of stimulating primary school children in Grades 5 and 6 to think about peace, their community, what can disturb peace and possible solutions, the theme of the project was "Peace in The Community". It also provided children in COVID lockdown with something else to focus on. 

The project was initiated and conducted by the Rotary Club of Wyndham Harbour (RCWH). This year, it also involved Rotary clubs who had taken part in the Rotary Club of Burley Griffin’s Peace Pole project such as Rotary Woden Daybreak and Rotary Nomads which had donated Peace Poles to the primary school in Hay.

A panel consisting of Rotarian Peace Fellows and an experienced Rotarian assessed the essays and found them remarkably perceptive, honest, creative, thoughtful, wise and entertaining. The children wowed the audience when they read out their essays. They were awarded their Rotary Certificates of Achievement and prizes "virtually" (to be followed by real ones).


The Zoom event brought together Rotarians from Victoria and the ACT, Rotary Peace Fellows, children and teachers from various schools including St. Mary’s Parish school in Hay, NSW with their student, their Prince Patel awarded the first prize! Informal feedback from parents and teachers in Hay indicated that this Rotary project has been a big boost to the morale of residents in this rural community, Feedback from the township was positive with the children really “loving” writing the essays and generating generated civic pride in participation in a national competition. 

It is planned for the Peace Essay Competition to become an annual Rotary event, with clubs and schools all over Australia warmly invited to participate. For further information, please contact the RCWH Peace Coordinator, Swati on or email, Mob 0422 444 064.