COMMUNITY SUPPORT FOR 21 JUNE… DAY OF PRIVATE REFLECTION
Following the launch of its plans for a Day of Reflection to be held on Thursday, 21 June 2007, Healing Through Remembering (HTR) has received support from across the community for the initiative.
The cross-community organisation focuses on ways of dealing with the past relating to the conflict in and about Northern Ireland, with the aim of ensuring a peaceful and stable future for all.
And it says the Day of Reflection could help people make a commitment to that peaceful future, while also acknowledging the deep hurt and loss caused by the conflict.
Kate Turner, Healing Through Remembering Co-ordinator, says: “The Day of Reflection Sub Group has been discussing the plans and proposals for this initial Day of Reflection for over a year, but independent of this many individuals and organisations have come forward to offer their support and to make their own plans for participating in the Day”.
Sean Coll, Chair of the Day of Reflection Sub Group says: “We are greatly encouraged by the positive responses we have had from a wide variety of voluntary and community groups, churches, and businesses, as well as from individuals across these islands.
“A host of organisations are providing facilities where quiet and private reflection can take place on the Day whilst other groups have decided to use the arts and creative expression to aid reflection”.
HTR has invited people across Northern Ireland, Britain, the Republic of Ireland and further afield to take part in the Day. While it is a society-wide initiative, private is the key word and participation is entirely voluntary.
“Some people may want to reflect on their own, others may decide to do so within a family, a group or organisation”, said Mr. Coll.
Kate Turner says, “While no public or civic events are being planned, groups can be involved by raising awareness among their members and/or by making a place available for reflection”.
HTR has produced a range of information materials – leaflets, postcards, wallet-cards and posters – to help raise awareness of the Day and also to aid reflection on the Day itself. All items can still be obtained free from the HTR offices at Alexander House, 17A Ormeau Avenue, Belfast or online at www.dayofreflection.com
Ms Turner adds: “Local and international research suggests that an initiative like a Day of Reflection can benefit both individual people and wider society.
“The Day is only one piece of the jigsaw necessary to fully address the legacy of the past, but it can provide a way of enabling us to begin to both remember the past and go forward as a society”.