The United Nations’ (UN) International Day of Peace, which is unofficially called World Peace Day,  is celebrated on September 21st, to recognize the efforts of those who have worked hard to end conflict and promote peace. The International Day of Peace is also a day of ceasefire – personal and political.

This past Sunday, Volunteers of America of Florida, participated in the Peace Day celebrations at Jaycee Park in Cape Coral, FL. Veterans from the Punta Gorda program hosted a tent to promote Veterans Village and prepare materials for a care package that will be sent to Afghanistan. They collected post cards with heartfelt messages from family and friends who wanted to show their support of our active military. The veterans also enjoyed recruiting people to help with the Friendship Tree mural. The mural consists of a large piece of muslin fabric with a tree painted on it. Event attendees were asked to create the leaves by placing a painted hand, foot, and/or a written message next to the branches. Three young mothers were thrilled to include their infant’s footprints on the mural. The mother of four-month old Payton remarked that her husband, who is currently serving in Afghanistan, was proud to be a part of the celebration and activities.

Kerrie Wilson, Health Services Manager and Stacy Easterling, Program Specialist at the Volunteers of America of Florida, Punta Gorda program were delighted and grateful that the veterans were so enthusiastic and were successful in getting their message out to the community. Due to the overwhelming response received from the World Peace Day event, the veterans in the Volunteers of America of Florida Punta Gorda  program have expressed their excitement in becoming involved in more community activities.