In support of the United Nations International Day of Peace, students throughout the community of Ixtapa Zihuatanejo, Guerrero, Mexico participated in a video contest to promote a culture of peace in the city. Students from Universidad Autonóma de Guerrero (UAGro), Zihuatanejo’s toursim university won the contest, and their video was shown at the United Nations International Day of Peace Youth Assembly in New York in September 2015. Ixtapa Zihuatanejo will host its Celebration of Peace on February 28, 2016.
The video contest was part of an annual peace education program sponsored by the International Cities of Peace Committee of Zihuatanejo, under the direction of Professor Wendy Carbajal Sotelo. The contest required students to develop a short film to promote peace in the area, and they had to perform some type of community service or actions for peace. The video submissions were then posted on Facebook, with the winner collecting the most “likes” in 5 minutes.
The winning team from UAGro Zihuatanejo are: Emmanuel Mondragón Sánchez, Melissa Valdez Marroquín, Diana Erika Segura Estrada, Miguel Carbajal Castañeda and Brenda Cruz Mendoza.
Before making their video, the students had to perform community service. “Our action for peace was to attend the Niños Heroes de Chapultepec elementary school where had fun interacting with the little children. We asked them questions about what peace means to them; we had them draw pictures of peace. The kids were wonderful, and it was a very unique and personal experiece for each of us, “said Emmanuel Mondragón Sánchez, the team leader.
First, the university students had to perform community service. They worked with elementary kids, talking and drawing pictures of peace.
The students then had to produce a video. “We had the support of our university from the very beginning. UAGro Zihuatanejo is a tourism univeristy, so producing this video was very important to us. We had a lot of discussion about its content. We decided to include the important aspects of both culture and tourism,” they said. The dean of UAGro, Dr. Javier Saldaña Almazan, supported the student competitors by promoting their video on UAGro’s TV cannel.
Go UAGro! They won! The name of the winning video for peace is “Peace Prevails in Zihuatanejo,” using the Mexican musical theme Huapango.
“It was an honor to participate in this innovative project involving youth for peace. It is important for tourist to know that students in Ixtapa Zihuatanejo want peace. We thank everyone who supported us in this project. We know it is not enough to just talk about peace, you have to take action and work for it. We will continue our elementary school volunteer program throughout the year,” said the UAGro team.
The Celebration of Peace in Ixtapa will be held on February 28, 2016. A peace education seminar will be held for the general public from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Sunscape Dorado Hotel in Ixtapa. Admission is free. The official celebration will start at 5:00 p.m. at the Peace Monument in Zihuatanejo, next to the museum. It will be a gala event. Everyone is invited.
For more information about the Ixtapa Zihuatanejo area, see: