Talk of the Town: What brings you peace?

What brings you peace?

Peace has different meanings to different people. And different experiences bring people peace. 

Back in June, Daniel Swafford attended the City Wide Oakland Peace Summit at Laney College as a correspondent for Oakland Voices. The Citywide Peace Summit sought to convene victims of crime, impacted residents and service providers to discuss real solutions to the epidemic of violence in Oakland. 

For some people, peace is a place, a person, or even a menu item from a favorite restaurant. What is something specific about Oakland that brings you peace?

Michelle Phillips

“What brings me peace is purpose. I want to be impactful, so being out in community, to educate and connect people to resources, especially in support of disenfranchised communities, as resources don’t always make it there.”

Michelle Phillips, avid community volunteer

Devon Gaster

“Seeing the diversity of this city by taking a walk around Jack London Square, having a glass of wine at Rosenblum, walking around the Lake and observing the patchwork fabric of cultures.”

Devon Gaster, Men Creating Peace

Phoebe Harrison

“My friend Devine, she is so kind and is always happy, and I love talking to her.”

(Phoebe Harrison attended with her dad, Rich, so she could participate in the youth track).

Phoebe Harrison, youth attendee

Kenneth Johnson 

“Knowing that people can gather together to have a good time. I feel a sense of peace at Oakland sporting events, from professional to high school, watching my little brother play high school basketball. My National Night Out block party is coming up.”

Kenneth Johnson, Vision Quilt

Author Profile

Daniel Swafford personifies the soul of an Oakland native with his community organizing, activism, and fundraising. His role as an executive director of a nonprofit allows him a broad hand in storytelling through district management partnerships, where he seeks positive change. His world travels have taken him to volcanic sightings in South and Central America. Daniel, a poet and wordsmith, is charting pathways to publication.

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