September 1, 2003 - The most recent International Peace Garden will be dedicated in San Jose, Costa Rica on Thursday, Sept. 11, 2003. The date was chosen to honor the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, sending a fragrant and colorful message that world peace is every person’s right and responsibility.
“Peace gardens are bestowed from one international capital city to another,” explained Paula Savage, president of the International Peace Garden Foundation. “San Jose, Costa Rica was chosen by Maputo, Mozambique as a city that exemplifies peace by representing a country without an army and being a welcoming home to the International Institute of Peace.” She also noted that Costa Rica has been a model to the world in their peacekeeping activities as well as their proactive eco-tourism activities and environmental awareness.
The President of Costa Rica, Abel Pacheco de la Espriella, Minister of Foreign Affairs Roberto Tovar and Ambassador Carlos Mirandas of the Costa Rican Embassy in Ottawa, Canada will attend the dedication ceremony hosted by San Jose Mayor Johnny Araya. IPGF President Paula Savage will be accompanied by foundation board members from Europe, Canada and the United States. A diplomatic reception will follow the event. This newest Peace Garden in the chain of gardens now making its way around the world will be marked by a stone crafted by Designs in Stone of Philadelphia, USA to designate its official status.
The process of passing a Peace Garden between cities actually began about 50 years ago when Princess (later Queen) Juliana of the Netherlands returned home safely to Holland following her refuge in Ottawa, Canada during World War II. Each year she sent thousands of tulip bulbs to the people of Ottawa and Canada to thank them for their wartime hospitality, a tradition that continues to this day.
Sometimes the gentlest efforts generate the most powerful impact. The International Peace Garden Foundation has been quietly sowing the seeds of world peace since the organization was established in 1992.