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Junior School Newsletters

Let Your Life Speak with Jane Harries: Living out our Quaker Peace Testimony – Joys and Challenges

Let Your Life Speak with Jane Harries: Living out our Quaker Peace Testimony – Joys and Challenges

Wednesday 22 March – doors open 6.30pm

Originally from Cumbria where she attended a Quaker school, Jane has lived and worked in Wales since 1976. Her background is in education and work with young people: firstly as a teacher of Modern Languages, then as an education adviser with the NSPCC and a project manager with the Welsh Government, responsible for promoting and developing opportunities for children and young people’s participation in Wales. Jane is currently working as Learning Coordinator for ‘Wales for Peace’ – a 4-year project which aims to uncover and share Wales’ peace heritage in creative ways and encourage young people to become the peacemakers of the present and future. Much of her ‘free time’ is taken up with voluntary work for charities working for peace, including Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) and the Fellowship of Reconciliation in Wales.

Jane has been a Quaker for over 40 years, and it’s her Quaker beliefs that form the basis of her work for peace. If we really believe that there is ‘that of God’ in everyone, how can we contemplate war and mass destruction as ways of ‘solving’ the world’s problems? She has been a member of Amnesty International since the 1970s and in the 1980s she joined a group called ‘Women to Women for Peace’ which aimed to build bridges between people from countries with opposing political systems and ideologies. Since 2004 she has been involved with individuals and organisations working for peace in Israel and Palestine, and in 2012 she spent 3 months on the West Bank as an ‘Ecumenical Accompanier’, providing protective presence for the local population and reporting on human rights abuses. Jane has also visited Iran on a ‘civilian diplomacy’ visit with the US Fellowship of Reconciliation in 2007.  She aims to live out peace-making in her day-to-day existence, which is not as glamorous but often more challenging than being part of international initiatives!

Jane enjoys reading, cooking and swimming. She is married to David, who is also a Quaker. They have three grown-up children, Dafydd, Merion and Catrin – and a very new grandson, Rhodri Wynne.

The Quaker Peace Testimony is one of the key tenets of Quakerism, and yet it continues to throw up challenges for us today. How can we live out the Peace Testimony in our everyday lives in the 21st Century? What challenges does this pose for us and how can we overcome them?  In this talk, Jane Harries will share some of her experiences and insights as a Quaker who has aimed to work for peace over a number of years – locally, nationally and internationally.

A series of early evening open seminars hosted by The Centre for Peace and Global Studies at Sidcot School intended to open debate and discussion on contemporary global issues. More than just a collection of ideas, these talks are examples of ideas and values in action, the term let your life speak is usually taken to mean “Let the highest truths and values guide everything you do.” 

This informal evening is designed as an opportunity to engage with the speaker, their work and the values that shape their life.

Venue: The Arts Centre, Sidcot School
Bookings: reception@sidcot.org.uk or 01934 843102


Miriam Gosling
Director of Peace and Global Studies

Independent day and boarding school for boys and girls aged 3 - 18 in Somerset