The first day of the Peace Run Fiji was assisted by Andrew from the Ministry of Education who lined up 5 schools for us to visit in Nandi. Here we meet with the Principal to discus the Peace Run program before meeting some of the students.
We commenced at Rata Navula College, an I-Tarkei school where the traditional Lali, a hollowed wooden log hit with a stick, is used to mark the change of classes.
The Peace Run team visited class 9E and enjoyed the more intimate setting of a class room after recently doing many presentations to hundreds of students.
One of the teachers came out to greet us as we passed by her classroom.
After a short run ...
... the team reached Nadi District High School where the students were assembled outside in shady spots.
Projecting as loud as we could, we engaged the students in the songs and Peace in the Heart exercise.
We were invited to their staff room for refreshments where the Certificate of Appreciation was already pinned to the notice board. While we chatted to the principal Anaseni Qeleca the teachers were busy with the torch. Team meber Amalendu Edelsten from Australia holds the Torch with teachers Gurdeep Singh, Rinesh Singh and Naveendra Singh.
Refreshments were provided and enjoyed.
Meeting the Principal after the ceremony.
Nadi Primary School was only 100m away ...
... where we met the Principal Avinesh Lingham who arranged for his year 6 students to learn about the Peace Run. His enthusiasm and cooperation was remarkable as they only just learned the Peace Run was visiting their school.
Gathered on the first floor balcony ...
... the students were particularly soulful with their hands on their hearts whilst also being very lively participants in our games.
Our next school Andrews Primary School, was situated on a hill with large trees under which the students assembled.
Their teachers Ayzal Ayub, Asena Tobua and Praneeta Chand received the certificate.
They were particularly bright and exuberant, running as a group with the torch and then endless clusters having photos taken with the torch.
Sandro always looking for the perfect shot for his video!
Nadi Muslim Primary School reflects the approach as expressed by Head Teacher Mrs Fareen Azard that all are Fijian, regardless of origin or religion - the school celebrates various religion’s holy days.
The multi racial/multi religious student group we met were very attentive in the classroom and very enthusiastic when they had the opportunity to hold the torch outside.
An energetic group of boys helped us run the torch across the oval to Nadi Muslim College.
We were assisted by the Principal, Sheron Haroon and his Assistant Principal, Satish Prasad in meeting with 50 final year students who had just returned from a day out exploring tertiary options.
They were very excited but engaged and demonstrated great understanding and sincerity for the Peace Run ideals. It was an energetic and fun experience for all present.
Concluding the day with Mr Haroon and Prasad who so effusively thanked the team for bringing the Peace Run to their school, happily encapsulated the general response we had received from schools in Nadi, most of whom had welcomed the Peace Run despite extremely short notice. We are so grateful for the warmth and generosity extended.