Wangari Maathai (1940-2011) A Tribute

September 28, 2011
Eric Olsen

The Global Peace Foundation, founded by Dr. Hyun Jin Moon, joins world leaders,  people of Africa , and Kenyan citizens in mourning the passing of Professor Wangari Maathai. The first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. Maathai dedicated her life to improving the lives of Africa’s poor, particularly women, and to persuasively linking the cause of environmental preservation, economic self-sufficiency, service and peace.

In her landmark 2010 book, Replenishing the Earth: Spiritual Values for Healing Ourselves and the World, Professor Maathai articulated four core values that guided the establishment and growth of the Greenbelt Movement, which she founded in Kenya in 1977: “Love for the environment;  gratitude and respect for earth’s resources; self empowerment and self betterment; and the spirit of service and volunteerism.”

These values are central to the mission of the Global Peace Festival Foundation and its undertakings through the Nairobi River Peace Initiative and similar service undertakings in Nepal, Mongolia, Paraguay and other regions of the world.

We were humbled and uplifted when Professor Maathai presented her video greeting to delegates from 40 nations at the 2010 Global Peace Convention in Nairobi, Kenya.  The Nairobi Declaration was recognized throughout Africa and the world advancing the peacebuilding theme:  One Family Under God:  Conflict Resolution, Peace and Development.

We shall advance global service and peace projects inspired by Wangari Mathaai’s lifelong sacrifices and shared vision of empowerment, environmental service and peace.   May her family be richly blessed in the love and hope she shared throughout the world.



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