Maldives 6 November: Malé city

Meeting with the minister and Malé school visits

Our first visit today was at the Embassy of Japan in Maldives. We were kindly welcomed by Counsellor Mr. Kaneko. He told us about the work of JICA organisation in Maldives and the teacher's volunteer work.

Thank you having us and for sharing our hopes and dreams for a better world.

After that we headed to Ahmadhiyya International School.

Students eagerly watched our video showing the Torch visiting many countries in the world.

Then we took a moment to feel peace in our heart. Only when we have peace can we share it with others. And we can always find peace, love and happiness inside our heart.

Holding the torch always creates smiles.

When passing the torch we can also pass our love and friendship with it.

Kids were sooooo enthusiastic to participate.

Everyone received a sticker.

Thank you, Ali, for organising our visit!

We presented our Certificate of appreciation and a "World Harmony" drawing by the founder of the Run, Sri Chinmoy. We hope this will remind you of our visit.

Teachers got a chance to hold the torch too.

We hurried around the corner to Billabong High International School, where we were welcomed by many smiling faces.

A moment of peace. There is always a positive way to solve our disputes.

Ms. Mauro receiving our Certificate of appreciation and a painting for World Harmony. We hope it will remind you of our today's visit.
A big thank you to Ulla-Maija Saikkonen-Mahne, school principal who unfortunately could not be present, for embracing the idea of Peace Run coming to the school.

Now is the time everyone is looking forward to - holding the torch that has been held by countless people in more than 160 countries around the world.

Thank you, wonderful Billabong High, for your enthusiastic participation!

After this we quickly headed back north to visit the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment. People do like to hold our Peace Torch, and we happily oblige.

Saaif (right) has been instrumental in arranging our visit to the Maldives. The ministry also helped with coordinating school visits for us.
Thank you to Saaif for taking the following pictures of our meeting with minister Mahloof.

We were very fortunate to be able to meet with the Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment Mr. Ahmed Mahloof.

He kindly welcomed us to Maldives.

We explained that the torch has traveled through all the countries in the Southern hemisphere, Maldives being the last country before it returns to Bali, where its journey started 10 months ago.

Thank you very much for helping us bring the Peace Run to Maldives. We do feel very welcome and the Peace Run is embraced by everyone we meet.

Next presentation was at The Maldives National University. Students from different faculties of the university were present and they were young in heart enough to join us in singing our World Harmony Run song, including the actions!

Everyone can feel peace in their heart, irrespective of age.

Thank you, Ali, for hosting the Peace Run in MNU! It is always very inspiring for us to meet university students and talk about self improvement and what we can each do for peace.

We hope you can join us for a run in next couple of days :-)

There was a costume tea party going on in the campus.

Our last school visit today was guess where?

Who can tell me what is this? What does it represent? Would it be the same if we ran with a banana?

The flame symbolises a flame we each have in our heart - a flame of hope, love, friendship, peace. And we can always turn to our heart whenever we are in need of peace and quiet.

Making new friends.

Thank you for your enthusiastic participation! There was a heavy rain during our presentation so we thought we would have to skip the run in the school's courtyard, but it stopped right on time.

The teachers do a great job teaching the kids the value of kindness, understanding and learning.

All the teachers, joined by one representative from each class, ran a few laps around. Rifka is leading the way.

This gave the students enormous joy.

Time for a final photo.

Thank you, Majeediyya school, we won't forget our visit.

After that we found our way to Male Swimming Track. We were invited by Hussein Haleem, an Olympian who is still very active with his running (and swimming) and has founded an academy for kids. It is called Kuda Husen Sports Academy.

This is the floating pool area, situated in a sheltered part of the ocean. When you swim in the pool, you can see fish, some of them quite big we were told.

The young swimmers were excited to hold our torch and they even showed us their swimming skills.

Abhejali is an Oceans Seven swimmer - 10th person in the world, 4th woman. This is a swimming challenge that includes 7 long ocean swims like English Channel or Strait of Gibraltar. People were happy to meet her.

Some more smiling faces.

Future Channel swimmers - when asked many of them were hoping to swim the English Channel one day.

New swimming friends. Thank you for this eventful and wonderful day in our lives!