Welcome to the Oleander Initiative blog. The Oleander Initiative is implemented by the University of the Middle East Project, a USA based 501 c 3 non profit organization.

This website is designed to provide information about the Oleander Initiative to 1) the general public 2) alumni of the program and 3 ) newly accepted participants.

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Oleander Initiative Program Description

Months after the atomic bomb was dropped over Hiroshima, Japan, a small patch of red oleander flowers bloomed out of the irradiated rubble. Since then, red oleander has symbolized both the dangers of nuclear war and the hope of a more peaceful future. In a similar spirit, the Oleander Initiative leverages the “power of place” of the city of Hiroshima – the first city to be devastated by nuclear weapons – to harness the power of education to promote more peaceful societies.

The Oleander Initiative gathers educators from communities around the world to work together and transform the lessons of Hiroshima into relevant and impactful peace education activities for their students.  The Oleander Initiative generates deep awareness of the catastrophic humanitarian impacts of nuclear weapons and equips participants with intellectual tools for conflict resolution and mutual understanding.

The Oleander Initiative is designed for secondary school educators from the Middle East, North Africa, Japan and the US who gather together annually during the anniversaries of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. During the program, Oleander educators develop lesson plans for their students back home informed by interactions with atomic bomb survivors, schoolteachers from the city of Hiroshima, and from experts on the humanitarian impact of nuclear war. These lesson plans — fine-tuned and co-developed with Oleander staff and fellow participants during the program — have a concrete and tangible impact on their students and communities. They raise consciousness about the catastrophic global impacts of nuclear war and inspire our next generation to work locally to promote peaceful societies.

 Oleander Initiative Program Elements

  • Instruction from top academics in the fields of peace education and nuclear weapons issues
  • Testimonials from hibakusha atomic bomb survivors from Hiroshima and Nagasaki
  • August 6thatomic bombing memorial ceremony hosted by the city of Hiroshima
  • Educational collaborations with teachers and students from Hiroshima
  • Attendance at the World Conference against A & H bombs, the oldest and largest of its type
  • Personalized guidance to assist development of educational activities best suited for Oleander educators’ local contexts
  • Visits to Miyajima and Hiroshima Castle
  • Cultural Activities including Kagura performance, tea ceremony, and calligraphy
  • Three day visit to Nagasaki
  • Two day orientation activities in Tokyo

Please click HERE to view a photo report of the 2017 Oleander Initiative

Please click HERE to view a photo report of the 2016 Oleander Initiative