Host a Pop-Up for Peace gathering to talk about Middle East conflicts and growing Islamophobia here at home!
Conversations over meals have been a place for healing and peacemaking for millennia. When we share stories and ask questions, we learn and feel more connected. There is so much confusion and fear around Syrian refugees, growing Islamophobia, ISIL/Daesh and whether peace is even possible. We feel it is time to gather our communities in conversation and connection.
In Los Angeles, the CODEPINK Local Peace Economy organized two Pop-Up for Peace dinner conversations on the night of December 4th. We outreached to people in Middle Eastern communities to partner with us. A Pop-Up for Peace also happened in New York City.
We are encouraging CODEPINK members nationwide to take this opportunity to gather and lead a conversation.
Choose a good space for the gathering. You can host a Pop-Up for Peace in your home; make it potluck if that's easier, and invite friends. Or, you can ask a local restaurant to make space available and reach out to the larger community. Pick a date and venue that works for you.
We suggest choosing one of these two ways to start the conversation:
A) If you know a person or persons from the Middle East, or of Middle Eastern heritage, and/or Muslim, invite her/him/them to share a story about their experience. Give an approximate time limit and plenty of emotional support for this sharing. Allow the person(s) to say if they will answer questions, or just want their story to be received with respect.
B) Ask one person with a strong voice to read a piece about the struggles Syrian and Iraqi refugees are facing. We suggest this one: “No One Leaves Home” by Warsan Shire
The Menu for Peace gives a structure, with questions for discussion. Of course, you as the host/hostess and the other participants can discuss other questions, but please try to stick to this format. Guidance for facilitating the conversation is also included in the Menu for Peace.
People are longing to connect and talk about these challenging issues. You can provide a container for that connection to happen.
We will support you by posting your event in our Action Calendar, aiding in outreach and offering a Menu for Peace you can hand out at your gathering. After your Pop-Up for Peace, please send a short report back (number of people, how the discussion went, a funny or moving quote) to email@example.com. Post photos to your own facebook page or twitter account, too!
Learn & read report-backs other member hosted Pop-Ups!
Sign up to host your own Pop-Up for Peace gathering now!
Want to dig in further?
We are in pitiless times by Vijay Prashad
Magical Thinking about Isis by Adam Shatz
- Isis shouldn’t dictate how we address refugees by Chelsea Manning
- After Paris & Beirut Attacks, A Call for Justice – Not Vengeance by Phyllis Bennis
- Unspoken Thoughts of an Average American Muslim Woman by Noor Wazwaz
As a Muslim, My Heart Freezes with Fear by Manal Omar