Next PEP Team Meeting's
March 9th at 6:00 PM
Please contact email@example.com for more info.
Buncombe County Detention Facility: Classroom and in the Housing Unit
Swannanoa Correctional Center for Women
Craggy Correctional Center
Black Mountain Substance Abuse Center
Public - hosted by Jim & Mike Forward
Asheville Community Center
Unitarian Universalist Congregation
Volunteers are Greatly Needed
for the Local Peace Education Programs
The number of current Peace Education Programs in correctional facilities in the Asheville area is continuing to grow.
Several facility administrators are requesting more concurrent programs for their facilities, as they witness the great influence it has with the attendees.
More volunteers are urgently needed to staff these programs.
If you would like to help, please contact the PEP Team at
NEWS From BCDF
A participant in the last course at BCDF Housing Unit 6W asked the Judge if he could spend an extra 4 days in the Facility in order to complete the PEP Course. He was allowed to stay.
The signing in Colombia, South America of historic agreement between the Secretary of Education & Prem Rawat to bring the Peace Education Program to 500+ schools in Antioquia
PEP at Black Mountain Substance Abuse
Center for Women
enters second year.
Comments from the Program director follow:
"We cannot thank you enough for you and the volunteers who come every week. We hear nothing but positive comments for the women who attend your program. We feel lucky to have this program here!!
4 YEARS LATER!!!!
Kala Shaffer was responsible for this effort!
The NEW program at the
Swannanoa Woman's Correctional Facility
in Black Mountain begins May 30th.
Training and certification is through the
NC Department of Public Safety. YOU NEED TO BE certified to participate, PLEASE contact us.
Certification takes place on June 12th, 6:30 pm
at Swannanoa Correctional Center for Women
55 Lake Eden Rd Black Mountain, NC 2871 1
New entrance policy & procedures is available on the PEP TEAM INFO page
Buncombe County Detention Facility
After more than a year of transition at the Buncombe County Detention Facility, including the retirement of Val Lamberti, the previous volunteer coordinator, the PEP team was warmly welcomed back to the facility by the new volunteer coordinator, Sarah Regala. The first class was held on Tuesday, January 23rd. As a new requirement, the whole PEP team had to complete the PREA orientation (Prison Rape Education Act), which is basically a 15 minute educational video. 15 of us showed up promptly at 11:00am that day to complete the requirement. Even though Sarah had communicated that any of the team was welcome, seasoned volunteers as well as new volunteers, she was a bit startled to see our size and enthusiasm!
We were herded up to the educational room to view the video, and as soon as it was completed, the men who were participating in the new PEP series filed into the room and took their seats. Sarah introduced the PEP team to the men, and then the team left – some new team members to be taken through orientation by Sarah, which includes a tour of the facility. Three of us stayed behind to conduct and facilitate the class (only three volunteers are allowed to be in the room during a class).
This is a class of 12 men (the maximum the room will accommodate). After a short introduction by the facilitator (me), the men were introduced to Prem – the video began and everyone in the room (including the PEP team) was transfixed! Attention was definitely being payed! We have done many of these PEP series at BCDF, and I have to say, this was one of the most engaged, enthusiastic, and lively classes we have had the pleasure of facilitating. During the reflections pause, they shared, they asked questions, and by the end of the class, they were asking how they can continue on the outside. They were also eager to get their hands on one of the five copies of Splitting the Arrow that we gifted the facility with.
We are well known at BCDF by employees and staff (oh, it’s the peace group…..), and are welcomed and trusted. It is a great honor to be able to bring Prem’s message to these men and women, and to witness it received with open-hearted vulnerability.
If anyone is still considering joining the team, give it a try. The true experience of PEP in action is priceless.
Sally Weaver discusses PEP in Los Angeles on
Asheville Vets at Veterans PEP Meeting - Miami 2017
My personal thanks to all of you who have responded to this important opportunity to fund the ever-expanding work of The Prem Rawat Foundation. As of today, US$121,315.00, including the matching funds, has been raised!
TPRF’s Peace Education Program (PEP) is spreading like wildfire. What is particularly interesting is that much of this expansion is being led by participants in the program. Once they have completed the program themselves, many are initiating and facilitating PEP in their own communities or areas of interest.
In the corrections area, the program is often first welcomed as a pilot program for inmates and later becomes an ongoing program once the positive change in the participants becomes obvious. PEP has now been approved for use in all 241 prisons in South Africa and all 45 prisons in Ghana.
In the following video, Peace Education in Academia, you will hear educators and students talk about their responses to PEP and their conviction about making a space for it in universities.
Recently translated into English Braille in Malaysia, PEP is now available in 22 languages and has been presented in 73 countries, 12 new this year. This is impressive. But what matters most is that people from all walks of life are discovering their own source of individual peace, and that is changing their lives. To me, their expressions are moving beyond words.
One PEP participant from a women’s wellness center in North Carolina wrote, “I never thought I could be the person who could change my life. I can be my own hero. I was blind to a lot of things, and this is opening my eyes and showing me my life.”
We need your help to tip the scales. Thank you for all you do in making these programs possible!
TPRF Board President
A Letter to Prem from a PEP participant at BCDF
November 28, 2015
I wanted to write briefly and thank you for creating, speaking on Peace Education.
I wasn’t truly aware of the concept that Peace resides within ourselves. I spent several years searching for love, happiness, contentment, understanding, from outside, artificial/virtual objects. Everything you speak on makes one look in themselves.
I have been incarnated over 6 times this year, but was forced to do my 90 days this time. I was given the opportunity to attend your program, and I plan to continue following your lectures and I hope to be able to hear your speech in person one day.
One of the parts of your speech that really stood out to me, was the part of the lecture where you said “every day we are alive is a possibility to make a heaven on earth.”
It also meant a lot me when you said “to be alive, to take a breath is a miracle.”
For years especially the last two years, I was living to die, there was nothing right in the end for me except a life coming to an end, to end my chaos, hurt, anger, unhappiness, until I was incarnated I didn’t love myself.
Your message has unpowered me, lighten my load, and taught me several new ways to see life, and several aspects on ways to see. And happy, content, even inside these walls.
When you said "we create our own imprisonment within ourselves of hatred", that really hit home because I had been one incased within my own heart, my mind and soul for several years, using artificial substances, (drugs), and man to try to mask my miserable being, losing my identity, but now I am in the knowing part of my life where I can soul search and learn who I am, but the greatest gift of all is knowing that peace, contentment, and understanding is all within myself that I don't need anyone else but myself.
Thank you for your message and giving me hope, inspire me to better ideals, and perspectives of life.
I look forward to hearing, learning more, and being able to attend your lectures live one day in the future.
Thank you. With love your student,
BCDF (Buncombe County Detention Facility)
Veteran’s Treatment Court
The veterans of the PEP Team have been working with the Veteran's Treatment Court to establish PEP as an elective for the final phase of the program. The following link takes you to an article that describes the program.
PEAK IS COMING!
PEP Sample DVD
POEM WRITTEN BY AN ATTENDEE TO PEACE EDUCATION PROGRAM
INSPIRED BY SESSION 8 (CHOICE)
WHERE PREM RAWAT TALKS ABOUT " SEEDS" SAYING:
"We are given seeds. There is a seed of anger, but there is also a seed of kindness. There is a seed of doubt, but there is also a seed of understanding. How restful it will be in your garden of life depends on what kind of seeds you sow.”
by Errol (11th November 2015)
He speaks of sowing seeds of peace and love
But I knew no peace
Life just seemed unjust
But he seems connected
To a deeper knowing
Showing me the trees
That were already growing
From the seeds I was unknowingly sowing
You can do what you want
And act as you please
But wherever you go
You’ll still be sowing seeds
As for me
When unrequited love
Had me sad and irate
I began to sow seeds of anger and hate
And every time I should ‘a shown more patience
I ended up sowing
Seeds of frustration
Leading me into all kinds
Of fucked up situations
I’d sow seeds of self -fulfilling prophecies
Talking about all the bad shit
That’s bound to happen to me
Until I was unable to trust
The seed-sowing words
From my own seed-sowing mouth
And so I sowed seeds of doubt
But I listened to his words
And became more self-aware
I looked in my garden
At the trees that were there
And I became filled with despair
I raved and I ranted
“It’s all because of me”
I was responsible for those trees
That came from the seeds I’d planted
Still it’s never too late to do
What you always should ‘a done
And it’s never too late to be
What you always could ‘a become
If you’ve got a fucked up forest of trees like me
Now is the time to act
But you won’t need an axe
No need to go at those trees
Like a friggin lumberjack!
Just breed no more of those trees
That have got you fucked up
Don’t feed them; don’t water them
Just let them wither and rot
Sow the seeds that you want to sow
Nurture them; garner them
Help them grow
Seeds of trust & understanding
Joy, kindness and peace
All those other troubling trees
Will have to settle and cease
At first it’s gonna be slow
Steady as she goes
But pretty soon you’re gonna get with the flow
And to give your new seed
A bit more clout
You gotta give each day
The benefit of the doubt
If you’ve got any doubting to do
Then doubt that anything bad
Will happen to you
That’s how you make a self-fulfilling prophecy
Work for you
This is what he says you gotta do!
That’s how you let the beauty come through
Then you’ll have a much better view
And now as I walk through my orchard
Life is not anything near as awkward
Inspired from his message
That lifts me above
Now I sow seeds of love, of love
Now I sow seeds of love!
*Picture credits from left to right front row -
MG Herrmann, Jan Stevens, Val Lamberti (Program Director), Jake Frankel
back row - Larry Anmuth, Shela Anmuth, David Hill, Alister Hill, Dave Buergy.
Acknowledgements to the facilitators that were not able to be present: Dorothy Hague, Sandi Gross, Joyce Czarny, Kala Carol Shaffer, Teresa Apunte, Aime Hubbard, Gary Hubbard, Jeff Stevens, and Dennis Turner.