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‘We can’t change what happened. We can only change what happens next.’
As an experienced worker for human rights in the Asia-Pacific region, Joy Balazo was troubled by the many examples of conflict she was observing. In 2001, while working for the Uniting Church of Australia, she devised a practical model of workshops and networks to sow ‘seeds of peace’ among young people living on opposite sides of conflict. This was named Young Ambassadors for Peace. Joy has used this model in many contexts, including Asian cities and Pacific islands, to help hundreds of people work for peace in their own broken communities.
'Joy Balazo’s work with Young Ambassadors for Peace has transformed and saved lives, and probably avoided wars. She has spent a lifetime building peaceful communities in areas damaged by generations of conflict. Margaret Reeson has captured Joy’s life, passion and drive beautifully. The reader can visualise Joy’s fiery determination and strength of faith. We also see a very human Joy, who has learnt to acknowledge mistakes, but never gives up. This book provides the peacemaker with key messages about respect, trust, faith and perseverance' (Jennifer Scott, Arbitrator and mediator).
'Joy Balazo is one of my heroes – living her faith in practical yet potentially world-changing ways. Margaret Reeson tells her story compellingly, from Joy’s traumatic experience during turmoil in the Philippines to her broad engagement in human rights in many countries.This is not just a ‘ripping yarn’, but a glimpse into living-memory history through the eyes of one petite person with a huge heart, dauntless determination and a fearless faith – it will keep you enthralled' (Jill Tabart, Former National President of the Uniting Church in Australia).

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