Live peace

Margaret Reeson. (2015). Live peace:Joy Balazo and Young Ambassadors for Peace. Acorn Press Ltd, Moreland, VIC.

‘We can’t change what happened. We can only change what happens next.’

As a human rights worker in the Asia-Pacific region, Joy Balazo was troubled by the conflict she was observing. In 2001, she set up Young Ambassadors for Peace, a model of workshops and networks to sow ‘seeds of peace’ among young people living on opposite sides of conflict.

Joy has used this model in many contexts to help hundreds of people work for peace in their communities.

‘Joy Balazo’s work with Young Ambassadors for Peace has transformed and saved lives, and probably avoided wars. She has spent a lifetime building peaceful communities in areas damaged by generations of conflict. This book provides the peacemaker with key messages about respect, trust, faith and perseverance.’

Jennifer Scott
Mediator and arbitrator

 Joy Balazo is one of my heroes – living her faith in practical yet potentially world-changing ways. Margaret Reeson tells her story compellingly, from Joy’s traumatic experience in the Philippines’ turmoil to her broadened engagement in human rights in many countries. Early encounters pave the pathway to peace-making through Young Ambassadors for Peace – using analysis and mediation skills from her Sydney experience, games from the Philippines, buddy system of protest marches in Manila, drama and symbolism from Thailand, intense painful group work observed in Bougainville and her own passion for justice and human rights that grew out of her Christian faith.

This is not just a ‘ripping yarn’, but a glimpse into living-memory history through the eyes of one petite person with a huge heart, dauntless determination and a fearless faith – it will keep you rapt.

Jill Tabart
Former National President of the Uniting Church in Australia

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