Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi Speaks with O’ahu Students on Practicing Peace

As a part of the Pillars of Peace Hawai’i program of the Hawai’i Community Foundation, O’ahu public and private school students were treated to a talk today with Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi at the Neil S. Blaisdell Center Exhibition Hall.

All Photos Courtesy of Pillars of Peace

All Photos Courtesy of Pillars of Peace

Before the talk, student entertainers, including Moanalua High School’s Brown Bags to Stardom winner, R.I.S.K.; Castle High School’s Brown Bags to Stardom winner, Ho’okipa; and 12-year-old singer, Ciana Pelekai wowed the crowd with their talents.

Ciana Pelekai

Ciana Pelekai

“In so many countries around the world, citizens are challenging their government’s misuse of power,” said Pam Omidyar, co-founder of the Pillars of Peace Hawai’i program. “Daw Suu reminds us that governance is to be in the service of others, to enable them to be educated, healthy, and work towards their full potential. She has proven, like Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, and dear Archbishop Tutu, that love and truth can move people more strongly than fear or coercion.”

Pam Omidyar

Pam Omidyar

Aung San Suu Kyi’s speech focused on the theme, “Peace Takes Courage and Compassion.” During her talk she spoke to topics ranging from her imprisonment, her beliefs on peace and compassion, and the importance of the next generation to be leaders in practicing peace. Following her speech, she answered students’ questions selected from submissions prior to the event.

Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi’s speech focused on the theme, “Peace Takes Courage and Compassion.” During her talk she spoke to topics ranging from her imprisonment, her beliefs on peace and compassion, and the importance of the next generation to be leaders in practicing peace. Following her speech, she answered students’ questions selected from submissions prior to the event.

Aung San Suu Kyi

“Aung San Suu Kyi’s visit is a part of a series of global peace leaders who have visited our islands with the hope that they will take back what they have learned about our culture and their experiences as they work to cultivate a more peaceful society,” said Kelvin Taketa of the Hawai’i Community Foundation. “These leaders see students as being the foundation for building peace in the world. One of the hopes for the Pillars of Peace Hawai’i program is to help give a new generation the tools and inspiration to embrace peace.”

Pierre and Pam Omidyar, Aung San Suu Kyi and Kelvin Taketa

Pierre and Pam Omidyar, Aung San Suu Kyi and Kelvin Taketa. Photo by Pillars of Peace

The public was invited to tune in to a live stream of Aung San Suu Kyi’s student talk today on the Pillars of Peace website. For those who missed the live stream, the talk will be available beginning tomorrow for playback at www.pillarsofpeacehawaii.org.

“The most important thing that I heard was that love is not enough, it’s compassion,” said Ayami Hatanaka, a junior at ‘Iolani School and member of the ‘Iolani Peace Institute. “There are several factors when it comes to not only creating peace, but being cooperative. Humility is the key to being a good leader and a good person.”

Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi

Pillars of Peace Hawai’i, Rotary International, East-West Center, and the Myanmar Association of Hawai’i are co-hosting Aung San Suu Kyi’s visit to O’ahu.

 

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