21 September marked a triple celebration at UWC Dilijan. Not only was it UWC Day – an opportunity to take a moment and acknowledge the importance of being a part of this big international family, it was also a significant day for all Armenians – Independence Day. On 21 September, 25 years ago, a referendum was held where 99% of the nation voted in favour of independence from the Soviet Union. Another festive addition to the day was International Peace Day, something that UWC communities around the world contribute to every day, true to the movement’s mission - making education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future.
The festival started with a public event on the central square: UWC Dilijan students performed a pop-up dance flash mob, spreading cheer and encouraging the audience to join in. The flash mob was organised by the Re-Apaga CAS, a group that works on bringing the culture of recycling e-waste to Armenia, with the support of the Dilijan Community Centre.
The event was then followed by the opening of an art exhibition by Ardean design, a startup from the TUMO Center for Creative Technologies. This startup aims at making revolutionary changes in the mindset of Armenian society about the concept of design and its various implementations. One of the co-founders of the project, Vasken Brudian, who is also a former TUMO ad-hoc workshop leader, gave a speech about the importance of creating opportunities for the local youth to grow and strive in the society. He also thanked students Anahit, Armenia, UWCD'18 and Eduard, Armenia, UWCD'17, for their active involvement in the realisation of the project. Dozens of guests, local counterparts, pupils from Dilijan schools were invited to the exhibition. Later they all had the chance to participate in the cultural fair: the students, dressed in their traditional costumes set up pavilions, introducing pieces of their heritage to the guests and also to each other. Following, Ruben Vardanyan, the Co-Founder of the College presented to all the attendees the RVVZ network, their vision of global education and how the revolutionary ideas can make a change.
The day was concluded with a candlelight walk to the peace memorial, where students recited poems, shared ideas on world peace, friendship between nations and the need for every individual to contribute to building a better world.