Posted by Anita Cunningham on Nov 20, 2019
Members of four East Hawaii Rotary Clubs erected a Peace Pole on Oct. 19 along the walkway at Kuhio Kalanianaole Park in Hilo. “Let peace prevail on Earth” is written in several languages on the pole. This installation of the Peace Pole was unique as it had been touched by the visiting Open World delegation from Russia.
The delegation visit and Peace Pole project was explained as part of Rotary peace committee’s workshop “Let’s Work It Out” series on Oct. 18. The Open World’s visit changed the thinking of many about how we can pursue peace through simple acts of sharing.
The OW program brings current and future leaders from post-Soviet countries to the United States so they may observe professionals in the U.S. and get a firsthand look at the American system of democracy and free enterprise.
The Open World delegates were engineers and professors that met their counterparts at the University of Hawaii-Hilo and visited the energy research labs in Kona. They were shown many technologies, including biofuels, they had never seen before. The delegate from the Kamchatka region of Russia presented a slide show of an advanced geothermal plant where he worked.
Host families, Rotarians and delegates learned about food, songs, customs, education and cultural norms in each country during two hosted dinners.
The delegates experienced Rotary in both countries and will be speakers at the Russian clubs. They will also be asked to host visiting Rotarians from Hawaii on the friendship exchange.   Coordinators in Hawaii and Russia are planning additional joint projects and exchanges.