I work with an International movement called Aiki Extensions. AE transcends style and affiliation to any particular organisation and aims to use the principals of aiki off the mat to improve people's lives generally and supports some fantastic projects around the world, (google them to find out more). In the UK I am helping to support AE's Aiki Peace Week initiative, which takes place between September 20-27. Since the project began we have made significant progress has been made and at the present time 116 dojos from around the world, (19 countries so far), have signed up to promote what aikido has to offer to the wider world.
The idea, is that through the practice of aikido on the mat, we learn to transcend violence and from it create peace and harmony. We want people to see that if it works in this sort of physically extreme situation, then these self same principals can be used off the mat to deal with any type of conflict to produce a positive outcome.
Aiki Peace Week is born out of the United Nations International Peace Day which takes place on September 21st and gives us the opportunity to piggy back any publicity that results from this. As a result, Aiki Extensions have produced some material which you could use as the basis for a press release to your local newspaper, radio station or even local television. It's a real chance to positively promote your clubs/association, get some new members and form links with like minded dojos across the world that want to see aikido deliver what the founder had in mind.
Please visit the website and take a look at what is on offer and ask yourself why you wouldn't want to be a part of this. It will cost nothing, other than a little effort and as we all know most positive effort produces positive results. The address is as follows:
Apart from explaining what Aiki Peace Week is all about in more detail, you will find the press release information and some ideas to try out in your classes that week. If you can add to this by submitting your own ideas, I would be delighted to arrange for your material to be posted on the site.
So far the interest in the UK has been relatively small, but in France the idea is starting to positively mushroom. It would be fantastic if the aikido community in the UK could come together on this particular cause and that in itself would be something wonderful to celebrate.
If you want to learn more, I would be delighted to answer any questions you may have, by phone email or perhaps skype
skype name- Quentin Cooke