Novel partnership promotes peace

September 26, 2009
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IBJ Letters To The Editor

Thank you for the great article about Indy Parks looking for innovative ideas for partnerships. I would like to share an idea in action.

Through partnership with Indy Parks, Peace Learning Center is making a difference in the lives of central Indiana youth and families while enhancing Indy Parks’ mission.

In our country’s fourth-largest city park—Eagle Creek Park—Peace Learning Center combines conflict resolution, character education and nature to educate, inspire and empower people to live peacefully. PLC creates innovative programs that curb violence and crime. 

Beginning in 1997 through work with domestic-violence victims and peace-education activities in schools, response from teachers, administrators, and students illustrated a true need for more character education and conflict-resolution programming. Indy Parks officials helped Peace Learning Center secure Eagle Creek’s former Indian museum and Eagle Crest Estate owned by J.K. Lilly Jr. The vacant building was in need of major repairs. In exchange for renovation expenses, IndyParks worked out a permit use agreement to establish the Peace Learning Center within the park.

Beginning with six people and a few volunteers, Peace Learning Center now has a staff of 20 and hundreds of volunteers who engaged more than 120,000 people since we started. Many foundations, corporations, and individuals help us raise over $1 million a year to support our educational efforts—outside of the city budget—benefiting the entire community.

Mayor Greg Ballard and Indy Parks Director Stuart Lowry are very supportive of Peace Learning Center’s partnership and are working on a long-term plan to develop a 21st-century campus in the park with the Earth Discovery Center, Ornithology Center and Pike Youth Soccer. Emanating from Indianapolis, our programs are being replicated in eight U.S. cities and five countries worldwide.


Tim Nation

Executive director
Peace Learning Center


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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now