CVH (Connecticut Valley Hospital) celebrates fifth annual International Day of Peace celebration – Hartford CT – USA

September 18th, 2015

On Friday, September 18th, 2015, CVH, (Connecticut Valley Hospital) celebrated its’ fifth annual International Day of Peace celebration. This year marked the 31st Anniversary of the peace movement throughout the world.  The Culture of peace and non-violence is a commitment to peace-building, mediation, tolerance, acceptance, mutual respect, intercultural and interfaith dialogue and reconciliation.

CVH Pole IM, JD, Helene VartelasCropped
Left to right: Israel Martinez (CVH Director of Multicultural Affairs), Jim Dugan (WPPS), Helene Vartelas (CVH Chief Executive Officer)
Photo by Tracy Starbird

The theme for this year’s celebration was “Partnerships for Peace.” Each year the United Nations invites peoples of all nations to honor a cessation of hostilities and commemorate the International Day of Peace through education and public awareness on issues related to peace.

The celebration at CVH was held at the maximum security building and at the Yerbury Chapel, located on the grounds of the hospital. Participants were greeted by the hospital’s CEO, Helene Vartelas, Multicultural Affairs Director, Israel Martinez, and our keynote speaker, James Dugan, Manager of The World Peace Sanctuary in Wassaic, New York.  Mr. Dugan’s keynote address was well received by all participants including patients, staff and invited guests.  This celebration was marked by various scripture reading from the Qur’an, Torah and the Bible. The CVH Peace Pledge was read. Participants were also entertained by CVH’s pianist Louis Sorrentino, vocalist Amanda Halsted and a chorus who sang “ Blowin’ in The Wind” and “Get Together.”

JD speaking 2Cropped
Jim Dugan, The World Peace Sanctuary
Photo by Tracy Starbird

This annual event ended with the re-dedication of the CVH’s Peace Pole, orchestrated by Mr. James Dugan, Israel Martinez & Helene Vartelas. This year the Memorial Gardens in front of the Yerbury Chapel were also re-dedicated for the first time since 2002. The grounds of CVH were decorated this year with colorful “pinwheels for peace” made by patients and staff alike for this annual celebration.