With Our Own Two Hands
This special project was not only a practice in being stewards of the environment, but also a way of reminding the pupils that we are all dependent on each other in ways, both big and small. These young students wordlessly demonstrated our previous messages of friendship, peace, and community and we were quick to witness similar behavior across the larger community.
The students at the RC Mixed School in Ho worked in quite partnership with one another to make Earth Peace Flags in exchange with Riverside Middle School in Evans, Georgia. The most impactful message that we shared with the students here – through the wonderful flags from the U.S. – was that each individual is able to take ownership and responsibility for the places that he or she loves in nature. The pupils were pushed to not only think about what nature gives them, but what they can give nature in return… with the care of their “own two hands”. There were messages of peace, love, and gratitude mixed in with an awareness of our environment. While the students struggled with the language barrier, their concern for the Earth definitely improved. They decorated their flags with brightly colored animals and nature scenes, including beaches, rivers, mountains, trees and flowers. The students here were excited by the plethora of marker options and did not feel limited by realistic representations; a sun can be purple, a tree can be pink.
Some students were compelled, after contemplating the idea that the world belongs to everyone, to write special messages to specific friends with whom they have had previous contact. Others were personally inspired by what their American friends had created and many adopted the same sentiment for their own Earth Peace Flag creation. They were obviously touched by images of beaches, mountains, and rivers that they have not seen in real life, but were exposed to by the drawings of their friends.
Pride for their country was shown in some very patriotic flags that had hands colored to look like the Ghanaian flag, with yellow, red, and green and a black star in the palm. The heartfelt connection to the United States was also reflected in messages wishing their American friends well and expressing their hope to visit them in the States someday.