Poppies play a part in Peace Day celebrations

Kathleen Trinh, John Quach, Anna Chantachak Linda Tran, Elizabeth Kailea and Arnold Huynh.
Kathleen Trinh, John Quach, Anna Chantachak Linda Tran, Elizabeth Kailea and Arnold Huynh.

To commemorate the Centenary of Armistice – the historic agreement that ended World War I – Cabramatta High School used poppies as a central theme for their annual Peace Day event on Tuesday.

The school welcomed 2018 Sydney Peace Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz for the event which carried the theme: Another world is possible. 

Professor Stiglitz, 75, was selected for the award for dedicating his life’s work to challenging conventional economics in the pursuit of global social justice, and for speaking truth to power while proposing achievable solutions.

He said it was “a tremendous honour" to receive such recognition as he prepares to deliver the City of Sydney Peace Prize Lecture at the Sydney Town Hall on November 15.

Cabramatta High School principal Beth Godwin said they were “privileged” to host the Nobel Prize winning American economist in a celebration of peace.

“In real terms he [Joseph] speaks out against the distribution of wealth and power that sees the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer. This, in turn, sees one element of the community having more opportunity, power, access to education and life choices,” she said.

“His challenge to all of us is: How can we break the cycle of power and greed to enable all peoples and the planet to flourish?”

A highlight of the event was the Poppy Relay with students gifting ceramic white poppies, as a symbol of peace, to significant community leaders. Students created clay poppies to represent the sacrifices made by those in the armed forces.  A poppy installation was also installed in the school’s Peace Garden.

Cabramatta High School’s Peace Day event is the culmination of three months of work by the committee which raises awareness about the issues the Peace Prize winner represents and fundraising for organisations related to the winner. Students also developed a range of artworks and garden pieces to be displayed in the Peace Garden.

More than 20 schools attended the event which included the unveiling of an individual portrait of Professor Stiglitz by a senior art student.

Among the other highlights of the day were the students dressing in the their national costume (approximately 40) to represent the different cultural backgrounds of the school and the releasing of the doves as a symbol of peace.