Peace Warriors Impact Culture at NLCP
Peace Warriors are student activists at North Lawndale College Prep (NLCP) who have dedicated themselves to easing the violence that pervades their world. Peace Warriors play an impactful, and risk-taking role here at NCLP. After a process of education and training in Kingian Nonviolence Principles, students become Peace Warriors, and they encourage a culture of peace and even find a way to make peace cool. We never know how far a good deed will go, but we do know that this lifestyle choice has much impact on the culture at NLCP. With encouraging a culture of peace, we have created multiple pieces of a peaceful culture. One of those are our Peace Celebrations. Both campuses track “Days of Peace” with a large public calendar marking off each day and offering student incentives for consecutive days with no fights. The incentives include dress-down days, a DJ in the cafeteria, dancing, and other fun to help encourage and strengthen a positive culture at the school.
Despite some limitations, I’m now a senior, and I’ve been a Peace Warrior for two years. Peace Warrior training brought about a personal transformation in me. I wasn’t always nonviolent, and I’d messed up in the past. Choosing non-violence was a struggle for me at first, but I know that this is the only way we are going to make permanent change. I can also say that the Peace Warrior Organization has helped to encourage a culture of peace here at school. We work together to maintain a Beloved Community, a Kingian Nonviolence term which refers to the equal opportunity and love of one fellow’s human beings. Through reasoned compromise, both sides resolve the injustice with a plan of action. Each act of reconciliation takes us one step close to the Beloved Community. To me and my fellow Peace Warriors, Principle #2 means the end result of nonviolence is redemption and reconciliation, it has a gathering impact on our school-which makes us become more knitted and loving to each other. As Peace Warriors we kindly make a difference in others day. We do that by during kind gestures like Sympathy Runs, Birthday Runs, and Check-Ins which will help someone who seems to be struggling. We pair two Peace Warriors together and send them with a candy bag to visit an NLCP student who has lost a relative or seems to be struggling. We simply want to let them know that we care. For Birthday Runs we place a birthday certificate on their locker to let everyone know to celebrate someone. All of this works together, in big and small ways, to help bring us together.
By Roosevelt Harris-Williams