Introducing Peace Boat US Hollins University interns – January 2021

Greetings to the 2021 Peace Boat US interns Batshala Rijal and Jonea Mathis who are working with the organization for the first time this month! Both are students at Hollins University, a historically women’s college founded in 1842. As a liberal arts college, Hollins values and encourages a wide range of educational opportunities. While the Peace Boat US office is located in New York, for this experience both students will be working remotely from home. For Batshala, she will be working from  Nepal and for Jonea, from Florida, and we hope that this virtual internship will provide new opportunities to engage with civil society, youth and United Nations partners who care about people and our planet. 

They are very excited to begin learning about and working on ideas such as sustainable development, climate action, and youth participation.

Please see the introductions to our intern team here below:

Batshala Rijal is an international student at Hollins University, VA, and currently a sophomore who will graduate with a degree in International Studies with a focus on Psychology and Social Justice. She is involved in interacting with immigrants and refugees around the world with a passion for raising awareness of different global challenges. Born and brought up in Nepal, she is currently working on a youth-led initiation named “Feed the Hungry Nepal” and, through this opportunity at Peace Boat US, aspires to obtain a wider world view. She is also interested in photography and is an ardent player of the violin. As a first year Hollins’ student, she was named as the international student class vice president. She is now serving as vice-president of the Academic Advisory Committee and is in leadership positions of the international student group, Association of Countries, Cultures, Events, and National Treasures, ACCENT.

Peace Boat’s ideals match with what Batshala wishes to do in the future. She hopes to use her skills and talents through this experience to develop a better understanding of the inner workings of a non-profit organization. At Peace Boat US, she is most excited to work around the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and hopes to develop her communication and leadership skills through this opportunity.

Jonea Mathis is a sophomore majoring in Communication Studies and minoring in Spanish at Hollins University. She lived in Central Florida all her life before deciding to go to college in Virginia. In her hometown she worked at a small nursing home and helped to foster a community between residents, staff, and the local neighborhoods. At Hollins she holds positions in the Black Student Alliance as well as the Sexuality and Gender Alliance, both of which work on and off campus to foster a more inclusive and welcoming community. In the upcoming semester she is joining one of Hollins’ literary magazines as an editor. Her passion for writing poetry and avidly reading has led to her current interest of understanding the ways that people communicate across backgrounds and cultures. In the future she hopes to travel and work around the world to expose herself to different experiences and ideas. With her degree, she wants to work with individuals and organizations to globally address issues of education and discrimination.

Jonea is very excited to work with Peace Boat US to learn more about the intersections between the social and environmental issues they address as well as the innovative solutions they implement. She hopes to utilize her communication and writing skills and learn more about working with NGOs and global communication to apply to later ventures and experiences.

To learn more about Peace Boat US and internship opportunities, please visit the website here and download the application :

This post was created and published by Batshala Rijal and Jonea Mathis (Interns from Peace Boat US).

Introducing Peace Boat US Interns – Fall 2019

Peace Boat US welcomes its 2019 Fall term interns: Su Thaw, Yanique Tingling, Amanda Simonsen and Rahaf Jambi. This dedicated and diverse team of young spirits will help in the preparation of the Climate Week events and the UN Youth Climate Summit in September. On October 10 and 11, Peace Boat US is proudly greeting the arrival of the Peace Boat in New York City, which coincides with the UN First Committee on Peace and International Security. Peace Boat and the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) invite you to join us for a special event, coinciding with the UN General Assembly – First Committee on Disarmament, Peace and Security, with approximately 75 young people from the ages 18–30 who will participate in activities promoting peace and disarmament in relationship to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The event is held under the “Youth for Disarmament” initiative to connect young people with experts in order to learn about today’s international security challenges, the work of the United Nations, and how they can become involved. The event will take place at UN Headquarters and onboard Peace Boat on Friday, October 11, 2019 and will feature keynote speakers, educational panel discussions, workshops and musical performances.

Under the 102nd Global Voyage, numerous events concerning peace education and disarmament will include testimonials from Hibakusha, survivors of the atomic bombs from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as part of the program, with an aim to reach 75 youth for the 75th anniversary of the United Nations coming up next year. Our new interns will be creating inspiring visual content for our social media platforms and support events either hosted by Peace Boat or where Peace Boat is participating.

Learn more about our new team of interns:

Su Thaw is a fourth-year student at Pace University majoring in Health Science with a concentration in Global Health. Progressing in her health science studies, her interest in the health status of people around the world, environmental sustainability, and world peace grew stronger. She highly resonated with the mission of Peace Boat US, building a culture of peace around the world through peace education and advocacy. This lead to her decision in partaking in the activities and programs that Peace Boat coordinates by utilizing the knowledge acquired in her global health courses and technical skills such as curating blog posts, graphic designing and managing social media platforms.

Peace Boat’s partnership with Pace University has been ongoing for 4-5 years now. This is the first year where Peace Boat is working with the College of Health Professions program at Pace. Health science students have learned about global health initiatives and the sustainable development goals, which correlate with Peace Boat’s focus as well. The hands-on experiences at Peace Boat will be highly beneficial to the health science interns, as they will have the opportunities to apply the information learned in the classroom to real-life experiences. 

Yanique Tingling is a senior at Pace University who will be graduating with a major in Health Science in the spring. Due to her interest in bringing peace to the world and an environment that will improve the health of many citizens, she didn’t hesitate to join Peace Boat US. Based on all the issues she has come in contact within her community and coursework she has taken part in, she has come to the realization that the issues can be improved for the better. She believes if she uses what she has learned through her coursework, she can learn to educate others on how to solve issues in a peaceful manner and how to care for others. She believes Peace Boat US will be a big step in enlightening her with how to make a change while also helping her to educate others on making this change as well. As a health science major, her goal is to expand the life years of many citizens and in order to do so there are a lot of goals that need to be accomplished. 

She believes that Peace Boat US is a good place for her as it gives her the opportunity to see the bigger aspect of the peacemaking process, not just in her own community but worldwide. Her interest and skills in these important topics is likely to be very useful to Peace Boat US as it will be used to provide peace and help to accomplish goals included in the Sustainable Development Goals.

Amanda Simonsen is a student from Denmark. She is currently studying a master in Sociology specializing in Advanced Knowledge, Organizations and Politics. Amanda is graduating in the summer of 2020. In addition to the topics of her master, Amanda is interested in international development and politics, social differentiation, the influence of NGOs and environmental sustainability. Amanda is traveling through the Academic Internship Council (AIC). AIC is collaborating with a Danish organization facilitating exchanges and internships. Here, Amanda went through several screenings and was then matched with Peace Boat US based on interests, profession and previous jobs. 

Prior to the internship at Peace Boat US, she had volunteered in several political and non-governmental organizations in Copenhagen concerning public affairs, political events with top-politicians and the security of social rights. Moreover, Amanda has been working as a marketing consultant for 2 years.

Amanda will be contributing with sociological knowledge within the organizational, social and political fields. She will also engage in problem-solving, marketing management and the everyday portfolio during her internship at Peace Boat. Amanda is looking forward to work within the field of non-governmental organizations as well as in the field of multisectoral collaboration. Her interests lie primarily within the field of politics and policymaking. The area covering peacemaking is part of the ideology of Peace Boat Amanda is looking forward to engaging with the most. Amanda is excited to participate in the Climate Week events during September and especially to experience the venue of Peace Boat in October promoting peace and security. 

Rahaf Jambi is from Saudi Arabia and a senior at Pace University majoring in Health Science with concentrations in both: Health Policy and Advocacy & Global Health with a minor in Graphic Design. She has been living in New York City since 2014. 

From an early age, Rahaf was passionate about visual arts. She started designing as a hobby when she was 13 years old. She wants a career path where Art and Advocacy meet. 

Rahaf is very interested in both Advocacy – for human rights, peace and justice and Art. Prior to the internship with Peace Boat she worked at an Environmental Clinic where she worked on drafting legislation and lobbied in Washington D.C. Peace Boat for her is the first-hand experience on how an NGO operates. She has always believed in the role of NGO’s in policy making and social changes. 

She is looking forward to utilizing her skills and passion while at PeaceBoat US through ongoing work. She is looking forward to meeting people, having conversations, and promoting education and the environment. She is excited to be a part of a Peacemaking effort. 

The new Fall 2019 interns had the opportunity to go on a guided United Nations Tour together. They became better acquainted with the Main Organs of the United Nations and learned more about the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. They saw the remnants of the nuclear weapons that were used for the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. They also saw how the cities looked before and after the attacks. This section of the tour increased their support for disarmament, specifically abolishing nuclear weapons. The interns were also allowed to visit multiple council rooms such as the General Assembly, Economic and Social Council, Norway Room, and Security Council. 

Peace Boat US Welcomes 2019 Summer Interns

Peace Boat US welcomes its summer 2019 interns, Guillaume Bernard, Gabrielle Clark, Clayton Morrell, Vivienne Hólmarsdottir, Arleigh Rodgers and Ali Nelson to help in the preparation of the United Nations World Oceans Day and other upcoming projects. On June 7 & 8, Peace Boat US, is proudly greeting the arrival of the Peace Boat in New York City, where numerous events and celebrations will be held on the boat for the duration of these days. In particular, this year’s World Oceans Day theme “Gender and the Ocean” will provide an opportunity to understand a gender perspective of the relationship between humans and the ocean. Our interns will be joining us in preparing for World Oceans Day in June and the UN High Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development in July.

Learn more about our talented team of interns below:

Guillame Peace BoatGuillaume Bernard is a second-year student at McGill University majoring in Political Science with a minor in International Development and Spanish. He speaks English, French and Spanish. He was born in France and was raised between France, Singapore, Japan and United States. The opportunity to study in various countries permit him to realize the many differences and similarities between people and cultures around teh world. Through his travels, he decided that he wanted to help to diminish the inequalities and support Sustainable Development. Consequently, he has been a part of two community service trips, spending time in Costa Rica in 2016 and then Cuba in 2017. Since September 2018, he has participated in a club called “McGill Students for UNICEF”. He helped to raise funds and awareness for UNICEF Canada through events and campaigns on the McGill University campus. Guillaume is enthusiastic, organized, and very flexible, making him a good collaborator. In his free time, Guillaume likes to play sports and read news articles. He is really excited to be an intern at Peace Boat and hopes to learn more about sustainability, human rights, and peace while helping to the best of his capabilities for the NGO.  


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Gabrielle Clark is from Seattle, Washington, and is currently a senior at Long Island University. She is pursuing a BA in Political Science with a minor in Sociology. Her passion for human rights and globalization transcended after taking Environmental Sociology and Globalization courses at university. Following these classes, Gabrielle was inspired to study these areas through a four month study abroad program in Austria, Hungary, Italy, and Bosnia. During her travels she became very familiar with the key global and local political issues that are threatening to these pertaining regions of Europe. More specifically, Gabrielle’s intensive study of the post-war conflict in Bosnia is what lead her to intern with Peace Boat US. Upon finishing her internship and graduation, she wishes to obtain a masters in the realm of International Relations to further her understanding of global politics.


Vivienne Hólmarsdottir is currently a freshman at the School of the Future (SOF) in New York City. Vivienne peace boatPassionate about topics such as human rights and climate change, she is interested in the work Peace Boat conducts globally. Through her extensive research on environmental issues and women’s rights while at SOF, she has become even more interested in how animals are being affected by the rising sea levels  and how to protect human rights around the world. She is hoping to learn more about these subjects as well as other important global issues in order to contribute to their resolution. She believes that her time at Peace Boat US will bring her one step closer in helping promote positive social change.


Clayton Peace Boat

Clayton Morrell holds a Bachelor’s degree with a certification from the New York State and National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) in Childhood Education from St. Thomas Aquinas College. Clayton speaks English, Spanish and Japanese. Born and raised in the greater New York City region, he has previously lived on the remote outer island of Kitadaito, Okinawa, where be began his teaching career teaching English via The Japanese Ministry of Education sponsored JET program – Japan, Exchange and Teaching. After his tenure with the JET Program, Clayton continued teaching English on the mainland of Okinawa, Japan. Continuing with his passions to teach, learn, create and inspire, Clayton worked as a volunteer on Peace Boat ‘s 99th Global Voyage as an English teacher. Circumnavigating the globe, teaching English, creating media and organizing events, Clayton was inspired to continue working with Peace Boat. He currently joins us in the Peace Boat US office volunteering in support of programs and events. Recently he worked closely in supporting Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bomb survivors and the Hibakusha Appeal to work for a nuclear weapon free world at the United Nations during the 2019 NPT PrepCom, Preparatory Committee for the 2020 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference.


arleigh peace

Arleigh Rodgers is a junior at Ithaca College from Nyack, NY, majoring in English and minoring in Writing. Arleigh is a copy editor and staff writer for Ithaca College’s student-run newspaper, The Ithacan, where she will serve as the assistant Life & Culture editor in the fall. She was also the culture section editor of the student-run magazine Distinct, as well as a staff writer for the progressive Ithaca College student-run magazine Buzzsaw. She is enthusiastic to learn about new cultures and wishes to affect positive and long-term change through journalism and her writing. Her interest in working toward global equality and sustainability is inspired by her hometown and college town communities, in which the fight against climate change stands at the forefront. Arleigh is excited to bring her knowledge of writing and editing to make Peace Boat’s message accessible to all, and she looks forward to the time spent in the company of those who share her passions.

Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA) Peace Boat Summer Communications Internship

This summer, Peace Boat is offering a new internship position in collaboration with the Sustainable Ocean Alliance, an international organization that inspires, supports and enables young leaders to develop new solutions that address the greatest threats facing the ocean. Through education, mentorship, and access to leadership opportunities SOA aims to advance the impact of startups, social enterprises, and youth-centered initiatives. By investing in the development of emerging technologies and innovative ideas, SOA belives that we can create a more sustainable future for the ocean and the ocean economy. SOA is a leading international organization based in the heart of Silicon Valley in San Francisco. This will be the first time for SOA to partner with Peace Boat in offering an internship for youth from their network to support the UN World Oceans Day events in New York and Peace Boat activities focused on ocean conservation and climate action.

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Ali Nelson‘s passion for the oceans comes from growing up on the Seacoast of New Hampshire. She is a rising Senior at Bucknell University pursuing a double major in Spanish and International Relations with a focus on Sustainability and Development. She furthered her knowledge about the marine environment while studying at the Shoals Marine Laboratory on Appledore Island in Maine. Ali is very excited to Intern with the Sustainable Ocean Alliance and Peace Boat US to gain exposure a more global perspective on how to protect our planet.


This post was created and published by Gabrielle Clark  (Intern from Peace Boat US).

Introducing Our 2019 “Youth for the SDGs” Scholars


Congratulations to the seven exceptional young scholars that have been awarded our “Youth for the SDGs” Scholarship to join our 100th Global Voyage.  We will be sailing from Ushuaia, Argentina to Valparaiso, Chile, passing through the Patagonia fjords from February 18th to the 28th. Our scholars are joining us from all over the world, including youth from Saint Martin island to New York City to Chile. As the Peace Boat sails from port to port, our scholars will bring their intensive, specialized knowledge of their field in sustainability to the conversations taking place on the boat. The scholars will have the unique opportunity to engage with other academics and activists from around the world, taking part in informative workshops while marveling at the Andes Mountains, glaciers and the green plains of Patagonia.

patagonia picture 9Experiencing the glaciers and mountains in the Southern hemisphere, the scholars will be reminded of the vastness of the ocean and of the land we inhabit. Over these ten days, participants will immerse themselves in the application of the UN Sustainable Development Goals through leading workshops, participating in cross-cultural dialogues, improving their leadership skills, and aiding in the advancement of responsible tourism and peace worldwide.

screen shot 2019-01-10 at 3.32.57 pmThis South American program will empower the scholars to specifically delve into the SDG13 for Climate Action and SDG14 for Life Below Water. We hope this program will enable the young scholars to take what they learn on the Peace Boat and bring it into their communities, empowering other youth to raise their voices for a more sustainable world. Our 100th Anniversary Voyage also celebrates our cooperation with local partners such as the environmental organization CODEFF – National Committee to Protect the Flora and Fauna of Chile to promote the campaign to declare Patagonia as a World Heritage Site recognized by UNESCO. For more information on Peace Boat and CODEFF, please visit their website here :

Learn more about our 2019 Youth for SDGs scholars and their program coordinator below.

14257483_10157567867030294_777450253933390469_o (1)Emilie McGlone has been working with Peace Boat since 2004 and currently is the United Nations liaison and Director of the New York-based office of Peace Boat US, a non-profit organization working to promote peace, sustainable development and respect for the environment through educational programs organized onboard the Peace Boat, a chartered passenger ship that travels the world on peace voyages. Peace Boat holds Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and works in partnership with UN representatives, Nobel Peace Laureates and community leaders from around the world to create opportunities for international cooperation focused on environmental sustainability, cultural awareness and peace education. Emilie works to foster youth education and develops specific programs to learn about important global issues onboard the Peace Boat. Founded in 1983 and nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2008, Peace Boat has sailed on over 100 global voyages, carrying more than 60,000 people to more than 100 countries. Peace Boat has recently launched a new initiative to build an Ecoship to sail around the world, showcasing green technology and design, while inspiring positive change to radically reduce our carbon footprint. Peace Boat is a committed campaigner for the UN Sustainable Development Goals, sailing with the Global Goals Logo on the hull of the ship. Peace Boat’s Ecoship Project will build the world’s most sustainable passenger ship. A flagship for the SDGs, Ecoship seeks to address ocean acidification with reduced carbon emissions and significantly reduce marine pollution.


Sara Van Eerde holds a Masters degree from the NYU Silver School of Social Work. During her undergraduate career at Muhlenberg College, Sara pursued a Psychology major and a self- designed Gender and Sexuality Studies major. Her focus took a global perspective when she researched machismo in Costa Rica, youth activism and climate change in Germany, and art therapy interventions at an orphanage while living in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Sara is currently living in New York City and works for Global Kids, where she teaches environmental justice through a program called the “Human Rights Activist Project,” leads a “LGBTQ+ and Allies” support group,  and is piloting a new mental health program at a high school in Queens. In her spare time, Sara loves adventurous activities such as flying through the air on aerial silks, rock climbing, hiking, and performing musical improv. Sara is deeply inspired by the work that Peace Boat does and is honored to share her passion and love for the ocean with them.

michaelMichael Valdivieso obtained a BA in international relations and political science (magna cum laude) at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador (2016), and an MSC in Conflict Studies (Merit) from the London School of Economics in the UK (2018). He has participated in the National Model United Nations  New York from 2013 until 2018 both as delegate and as staff member. Michael previously served as a Public Information intern at UNHCR-Ecuador. He founded an international relations student association at his university in 2014, called Student Committee for International Affairs, where he served as president. He was the editor in chief of “A Different View,” an academic blog published by IAPSS, ending his 18-month mandate in September 2016. Additionally, as of December 2015, he serves as youth representative at a political think tank organized by Participación Ciudadana, one of the largest NGOs in Ecuador. Currently, he is one of the founders of Momentum Novum, a social business based in Germany that promotes sustainable development through advisory, education, and information services.

mareekaMareeka Dookie, born in Trinidad and Tobago and raised on the beautiful sunny island of Sint Maarten/Saint Martin is a creative young professional. She loves to travel, learn about different cultures, learn new languages, and gain worldly experiences. She prides herself on being a life long learner.  As an elementary school teacher, she enjoys working with children as they begin to unlock their knowledge and understanding of their inner powers and their ability to make positive and lasting impacts in the world. She holds a Bachelors of Arts in Spanish and a Masters of Teaching from Sacred Heart University in CT, USA. Currently Mareeka is focusing on recovery efforts in the lives of children on the island after the devastation of hurricane Irma on September 6th, 2017. She is working as a Programme Administrative Officer with UNICEF- Nederland  in Sint Maarten. She is beyond grateful for the opportunity to embark on the Peace Boat’s 100th Voyage focusing on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in Patagonia!

silviaSilvia Cantu Bautista is a junior at Middlebury College, majoring in Political Science with a minor in History. She speaks Spanish, English, and Portuguese. Born and raised in Mexico, she has previously lived in Victoria, Canada, where she spent two years of high school at UWC Pearson College. While at UWC, she took a course on Marine Science and conducted research on ocean acidification. She is passionate about Environmental policy and conservation, particularly concerning marine ecosystems. She is a PADI certified Advanced Scuba Diver and an avid photographer interested in climate change photojournalism. She hopes to become an advocate for climate justice and sustainability involved in the drafting and implementation of local and international environmental policy and adaptation plans. She is beyond excited to join PeaceBoat’s 100th voyage from Ushuaia to Valparaiso!

donovaneDonovane Tremor is a 27 year old professional photographer. He grew up as an island child, spending his life between the small island of St. Martin and Guadeloupe. He discovered his passion for photography at a young age, but pursued a Management and Marketing degree in Montreal and Guadeloupe. After graduation, he decided to follow his passion for photography, developing his specialization in landscape and architecture photography.  Most of his professional work focuses on the tourist economy between St. Martin, St. Barts and Anguilla.  He is enthusiastic about travel, specifically when he has the chance to discover new cultures from around the world. He is always ready for a new adventure!


Carol McDonnell Schmidt is a geographer working at CODEFF, the oldest environmental nonprofit organization in Chile. She works specifically with biodiversity, in the IBA (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas) program, trying to assess the status of birds for a more specific approach at protection initiatives within the context of climate change. Birds are a very important indicator of the health status of an ecosystem, and ecosystem conservation is the goal of her organization.  CODEFF continues to collaborate with Peace Boat to raise awareness about important environmental issues affecting the region and to promote the campaign to declare Patagonia as a World Heritage Site recognized by UNESCO.  Carol will share her knowledge about the important work that CODEFF is doing to make a positive difference for Climate Action and Ocean Conservation throughout Chile.

hansierHansier Rodriguez is a Dominican-American young man. He spent the first 12 years of his life in his native country, the Dominican Republic, before moving to the United States, where he eventually became a citizen. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Public & Nonprofit Administration with a second concentration in International Affairs at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. Hansier considers himself a change agent and a social justice activist as well as a global citizenship advocate. One of his long-term goals is to become a polyglot. His leadership model is inspired by the following quote, “the most powerful thing a leader can do is to empower others.” Hansier is enthusiastic, resilient, and a resourceful collaborator. His greatest attributes are his integrity and maturity, both of which are surpassed by his desire to succeed and live to his fullest potential. He prides himself on being organized, having an outgoing personality that’s full of energy, and maintaining a positive attitude, all while staying self-reflective. He hopes to continue to innovate his community through the rest of his college and professional career with his determination and perseverance. 

This post was created and published by Maddie Clevenstine and Maria Jdid (interns for Peace Boat US).

Introducing Our Hollins University January 2019 Interns


maria headshotMaria Jdid is an International Studies major on the premedical track at Hollins University in Roanoke, VA. She is from Syria and is passionate about the intersection between politics and medicine. Maria believes that an International Studies major is preliminary for an aspiring surgeon who wants to serve communities dealing with issues of equity. Maria has been heavily involved in Model United Nations and Model Arab League and will be serving as Co-President in the upcoming spring semester. In 2018, she was a staff member for American Model United Nations in Chicago, IL. In her free time, Maria likes to draw anatomical structures and read news articles. This January, Maria
is thrilled to be focusing her efforts within the
Peace Boat on the Sustainable Development Goals.


Harika Bommana is from Hyderabad, India. She is majoring in Communications and English with a concentration in creative writing at Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia. Harika is passionate about activism and hopes to one day help raise awareness about issues regarding LGBTQ community, sexual assault, education and many more. She is looking forward to interacting with people from different backgrounds and cultures. In her free time, she likes to read and visit museums. She is excited to intern at Peace Boat and hopes to learn more about sustainability, human rights and peace.

maryMary Elisabeth Cochran is from Virginia Beach, VA and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Spanish at Hollins University. Growing up with a father in the US Navy and in a city with a strong US Navy and NATO presence has greatly influenced how she has seen the world around her and created passion for international policy. After going to Hollins, she joined the Model Arab League team and has recently debated as a delegate on the Environmental Council. By working with Peace Boat, she hopes to gain a stronger understanding of NGO operations and the intricacies of environmental and social policy work, while focusing on peace and education.

picture1Shivani Karn is an international student from Nepal, currently studying Communication and International Studies at Hollins University in Virginia. She will be graduating in May 2020. Shivani has grown up in Nepal, Japan and India, along with recently spending a semester in South Africa as an exchange student. Shivani hopes to become a human rights lawyer with the UNHCR someday and wants to pursue Law after completing her undergraduate studies. Shivani is passionate about reading and will pick up any book on a political and historical topic. Shivani also enjoys traveling and being exposed to new cultures, and will grab any opportunity available to visit other countries.


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Maddie Clevenstine is a junior Gender and Women’s Studies major with a double minor in English and Art History at Hollins University. At Hollins, Maddie works as a tutor in the Writing Center, is the Head Editor of the University’s oldest literary magazine Cargoes and worked as a Student Success Leader her sophomore year. She is passionate about women’s health, education, and liberation. She is particularly passionate about the lives of LGBT+ women and wishes to spend her life working towards both the theory and praxis of liberation for all marginalized people. She is excited and honored to be interning at Peace Boat and can’t wait to learn more about how she can contribute to the goal of global peace. She believes everyone has the ability to impact positive global change.


This post was created and published by Maria Jdid

Peace Boat Interns Attend the 2018 ECOSOC Youth Forum


This week Peace Boat US interns took part in the 2018 ECOSOC Youth Forum. Interns Gin and Zeynep attended a Youth Forum Side Event titled “Leaving No One Behind: A Lens of Practices that Strengthen Inclusivity in Poverty Alleviation”. During this conference styled presentation, DPI NGO Youth Representatives and other panelists engaged in a heavy IMG_2139dialogue concerning the importance of youth involvement in the area of policy making and poverty relief at the grassroots level. Afterword, the interns made their way towards the SDG Media Zone where they were able to attend a live broadcast in which various speakers shared their passion for the UN SDGs and the important ramifications that they have globally. Interestingly, during the broadcast, a special new partnership between SONY and the UN had been unveiled by actress Meghan Boone.


Later in the week, Peace Boat US participated in the “Youth 4 Global Goals” event of the Youth Forum. The event was about the new game that AIESEC and UN Habitat have teamed up to launch together. The aim of this game is to raise awareness about SDGs and to demonstrate to the youth that anyone can contribute to the realization of the SDGs. The game revolves around all SDGs and their relation to SDG 11. The main mission is to create better cities while fighting typical urban challenges along the way. #UrbanAction

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This post was written by Gin Sanchez, Intern

Rutgers University Division of Global Affairs


Holocaust Remembrance Day at the United Nations: Diversity & Lessons to be Learned for Human Understanding

This Thursday, January 25, the Peace Boat interns attended the second UN DPI/NGO (Department of Public Information/Non-Governmental Organizations) briefing of 2018. This week’s topic was titled ‘Holocaust Remembrance: Diversity and Lessons to be Learned for Human Understanding’. The talk included four guest speakers: Sarah Kaidanow of the Holocaust and Human Rights Education Center, Evelyn Sommer from the World Jewish National Congress North America, David J. Michaels of B’nai B’rith International, and Jason Sirois from the Anti-Defamation League.

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This event focused on the ways to continue educating young people about the Holocaust. Regarding Holocaust education, the Secretary General has laid out two guidelines: to remember the systematic attempt to eliminate Jews during the Holocaust and remaining ever watchful of the dark clouds on the horizon. All four of the speakers provided their different insights about new, innovative ways to engage youth with the realities of the Holocaust and similar political themes. They all showed a great faith in the power of social media and the ease of access it creates for education on a multitude of issues. “You have to choose to be ignorant,” said Sarah Kaidanow. The most poignant of the social media campaigns discussed today was the #WeRemember movement by the World Jewish National Congress. This movement has reached upwards of 250 million people at all levels of society, even including Secretary General António Guterres. The represented organizations also all believe in the strength and power behind initiatives to humanize and preserve the stories of Holocaust survivors. As Jason Sirois put it, “it comes down to remembering the Holocaust, remembering how we got to where we are today, and focusing on the future.”

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For more information on the four organizations and the work they are doing, please click on their links below:

Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center

World Jewish Congress

B’nai B’rith International

Anti-Defamation League


This post was created by Katie Grandelli (Intern at Peace Boat US)

“Peace is… Acceptance” Event featuring MIYAVI at the United Nations

On January 22nd, Peace Boat US staff and interns attended the Sixth Installment of the “Peace is…” event at the United Nations Headquarters in New York entitled “Peace is… Acceptance”. The event focused on refugees and the ways we can stand with them by raising awareness through music and art. It included a performance by Japanese musician MIYAVI, UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, in collaboration with Japanese painter Fantasista Utamaro and Afghan refugee rapper Sonita Alizadeh. The event was hosted by Ambassador Koro Bessho, Permanent Representative of Japan to the UN, and co-sponsored by the UN Missions of Norway, Portugal, Indonesia, Germany, Costa Rica, Canada, Belgium, the Netherlands, Poland, Thailand, the Philippines, and Colombia.

The cultural event involved a special performance by MIYAVI and Sonita in which they both sang “Long Nights”, followed by two songs titled “The Others” and “What’s My Name” which were sung by MIYAVI. Throughout the performance, Fantasista Utamaro painted messages on the “Peace Wall” located behind the singers. At the end of the live performance, the audience had the special opportunity to write what peace meant for them in their native languages on the “Peace Wall”.

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During the show, MIYAVI spoke of his experience when he visited refugees in Lebanon and the positive impact he shared when he played music for them. Playing his guitar brought joy to people at the refugee camps and that experience showed him how to help raise awareness on the situation of refugees: through music. Along with Sonita, who became an activist against forced marriages after her escape from a marriage her parents had planned for her, and Fantasista Utamaro, the talented artists demonstrated how music and art can be utilized as a force for positive change. In addition to the music and art, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Ambassador Koro Bessho spoke briefly what Peace meant for them. An important and insightful thought from them was how not only does music and art provide a path to unite people and raise awareness on refugees, but how it can also heal people and help people/refugees readjust to life. Yesterday’s event confirmed that music and art can heal people; that peace is to create common ground for a common future.  



Click the song title to listen to MIYAVI’s songs

“Long Nights”

“The Others” (UNHCR Version)

“What’s my Name”

You can listen to one of Sonita’s well-known song “Daughters for Sale” by clicking on the song title.

You can see Fantasista Utamaro’s art work by clicking on the link:


This post was created by Amanda Davila (Intern at Peace Boat US)

ICAN Members, Hibakusha Stories and Peace Boat US collaborate to feature Hiroshima Film at the Japan Society

On January 19, Peace Boat US volunteer staff joined ICAN and Hibakusha Stories members at the Japan Society’s showing of the film Hiroshima. Directed by Hideo Sekigawa, this film from 1953 is a chilling depiction of the horrors of the atomic bomb. The audience received introductions to the film given by Mitchie Takeuchi, a second generation hibakusha (atomic bomb survivor), and Allison Pytlak, a part of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), recipients of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize. Peace Boat is a member of the steering committee for ICAN and recently unveiled the ICAN logo painted on the side of the ship. Peace Boat has worked closely with ICAN since its early years, and serves as the ICAN anchor in Japan, coordinating advocacy within the country.  Peace Boat US volunteers and interns were glad to have a chance to connect with Ms. Pytlak and Ms. Takeuchi and hear their testimonies regarding nuclear weapons.
Peace Boat has long worked in collaboration with Hibakusha (atomic bomb survivors), and since 2008, has invited Hibakusha of Hiroshima and Nagasaki to participate in the “Global Voyage for a Nuclear-Free World: Peace Boat Hibakusha Project.”  These testimony sessions are organized in cooperation with ICAN partners around the world, as well as member cities of Mayors for Peace.  Testimonials from the Hibakusha have the potential to deeply move people from all over the world and to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences these weapons cause. The Hibakusha and victims of nuclear test explosions around the world played a pivotal role in the negotiations that led to the adoption of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. Peace Boat will continue the Hibakusha project, calling on all states to sign and ratify the treaty.
Hiroshima was a sobering film that depicted the staggering realness in how it portrayed the local citizens of Hiroshima as they experienced the world’s first nuclear strike. The film itself followed a few specific characters, however the real story was in the entirety of the population of Hiroshima just looking for a way of survival. The film also tackled the stigma surrounding the survivors of the atomic bomb because of the physical affects of radiation that often causes internal harm and deformities. The interns greatly appreciated the chance to see this incredible film, and especially the opportunity to learn more about the Humanitarian Impact of nuclear weapons.

To learn more about how Peace Boat is working with ICAN towards a nuclear free future, click here :


This post was created by Katie Grandelli (Intern at Peace Boat US)

One-on-One Event with Jane Connors, Assistant Secretary General

On Thursday, January 18, the Peace Boat US interns attended a One-on-One Meeting with the Assistant Secretary-General, Victims’ Rights Advocate for the United Nations, Jane Connors. This session was the first of the Winter Meetings organized by the UN DPI and NGO offices (Department of Public Information and Non Governmental Organization). Her newly created role in the UN is to deal with the sexual abuse and exploitation as perpetuated by UN staff, as well as to continue working with the Secretary General, António Guterres, to follow his initiatives for these issues.

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Connors spoke about the initiatives that she hopes to accomplish during her year in office. Her numerous plans all revolve around creating a roadmap for victims to realize their rights and including the entire international community in dialogue about this issue. She mentioned the role of youth and the power behind the incoming generation in combating sexual exploitation and abuse. One statement of Connors that stood out to the interns was that  “one allegation is one too many.”


This post was created by Katie Grandelli (Intern at Peace Boat US)