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Correspondence between Keiko Kiyama and JEN staff

Dear Mugunthan,

Thank you very much for making various arrangements during my trip.
This time I was able to realize once again that our work had led to peace-building.

When the people came back to their familiar homeland after the end of the civil war in 2009, they found that it had been completely destroyed.
When they feel anxiety and frustration in the severe life they have to start from scratch, their anger is naturally directed at the civil war that lasted for many years.
Sometimes the anger may be directed at the people they fought against as an enemy.
So, I felt real peace in the hope-filled smiles of the women who told me that their income had quadrupled and now able to do so many things with their own money.

On the other hand, in some cases people tend to deny other people whose opinions and ideas are different from their own.

I think they will be able to live together if they can accept the differences as differences without denying them.
The key to harmony is tolerance.

In Sri Lanka, all the education is now being carried out in two languages, isn't it?

If the peoples with different languages and customs were to mutually accept without denying each other and share their lives, they would surely be able to live together.

"Peace is in the heart of each and every person"
Through my visit I was able to ascertain that our activities that strive to improve their lives had helped to build peace so that every person would be able to continue to have a supple mind.


Keiko Kiyama


Dear Keiko-san,

To tell you the truth, we were nervous until we saw you because none of our staff in Vavuniya office had ever met Keiko-san. However, we felt relieved very soon, for you started talking to us in a friendly manner right after you arrived.

It was impressive that you talked friendlily but with respect to local people and the community workers, who are also returnees, as well as to the workers at the related organizations during your stay.  This may be one of the reasons why the returnees were willing to tell you about their ongoing lives.

I remember very well that you gave us some advice on being thoughtful and what the support should be during the latter half of your stay. I remember you particularly emphasizing the importance of future peace-building and working in harmony with the society.

The northern part of Sri Lanka was well known as a vegetable-producing center thirty years ago. But the bitter civil war deprived many people of not only their homes and fields but also their strength of mind to engage in farming. It is through the ongoing project of sharing wells and farming equipment and working together as a group for their spiritual recovery that people have come to cooperate with each other as community members.

Peace-building is closely connected with everyday life. I would like to continue performing activities to let everyone become positive.

Mugunthan(Sri Lanka Office)
[ Mugunthan:left side]

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October 17, 2013 in Sri Lanka |