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Pinwheels for Peace

COOS BAY — In today’s world, peace needs to be more than just a word—and students know this best! During the week of Sept. 16-22 participating schools in Coos County and around the world will take part in an International Arts and Literacy Project — Pinwheels for Peace.

Pinwheels for Peace is an art installation project started in 2005 by two art teachers, Ann Ayers and Ellen McMillan, of Coconut Creek, Fla., as a way for students to express their feelings about what’s going on in the world and in their lives. 

In the first year, groups in over 1,325 locations throughout the world were spinning pinwheels on Sept. 21, approximately 500,000 pinwheels spinning throughout the world. Last year (year 11), 2018, over 4.5 million pinwheels were spinning in over 3,500 locations, including the United States, Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada, the Middle East, Africa and South America.

Locally, Human Rights Advocates of Coos County will be coordinating this year's Pinwheels for Peace project, a non-political community project.

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Peace is defined as “a state of calm and serenity, with no anxiety, the absence of violence, freedom from conflict or disagreement among people or groups of people.” Peace is not only associated as an opposite from the conflict of wars, it can be related to community building, family and peace of mind. 

Students in Coos County will create pinwheels, pinwheels of all shapes and sizes. As part of their creation process, students will write their thoughts about: war and peace, tolerance and living in harmony with others on one side. On the other side, they will draw, paint, collage, etc. to visually express their feelings. Students will then assemble these pinwheels the week prior to International Day of Peace when they will "plant" their pinwheels at school as an art installation, or march with them on International Peace Day Sept. 21 with HRACC in the Bay Area Fun Festival parade. 

Human Rights Advocates of Coos County is inspired by the possibility of peace on earth and peace in thee community, starting here with children in Coos County. Keep a lookout for the pinwheels — the spinning of the pinwheels in the wind will spread thoughts and feelings about peace throughout the county, the country and the world.                                                                           

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