PeaceJam, the homegrown nonprofit that brings kids around the world together with Nobel Peace Prize winners, is turning fifteen -- but it isn't slowing down. "We're more on fire, and more excited about the work we're doing right now, than ever before," says Dawn Engle, who founded the organization with Ivan Suvanjieff. That work includes the launch of a ten-year Nobel Legacy film series, which kicks off with Mayan Renaissance (a more serious, and optimistic, followup to 2012: The True Mayan Prophecy, which made its debut on westword.com). And giving the 2011 Global Call to Action Challenge Award to students from Chautauqua Learn and Serve Charter School in Tallahassee, Florida, all young adults between the ages of 18 and 22 who have moderate to severe disabilities -- but still train the elderly and disabled in how to use public transportation. "We were really, really blown away by the work they did," Engle says. Their prize is an all-day visit from Jody Williams, who won the Nobel Prize for her work fighting land mines; she'll be in Denver today to talk about "Rights for Women and Their Role as Leaders" at the third annual PeaceJam Heroes Award Luncheon.
"We'll have some young people there who will talk about how their lives have been changed by PeaceJam," Engle says, referring to the 24 students flying in from Florida, "and some adults who've been inspired by PeaceJam." Adults like former state senator Polly Baca and Mary Lou Makepeace, executive director of the Gay & Lesbian Fund for Colorado, who will both be honored with the PeaceJam Heroes award.
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The luncheon, at the Seawell Ballroom in the Denver Performing Arts Complex, starts at noon; tickets start at $100. For more information, go to www.peacejam.org or call 303-455-2099.
Tue., Nov. 15, noon, 2011