The City of Kotka is launching a nationwide Operation Peace Flower campaign. The mission aims to promote peace and friendship, encounters, dialogue and cooperation between people from different backgrounds and to honour Ukrainians and their nation.
The campaign will be launched on March 30. at 6 pm at the Kotka Maritime Center Vellamo auditorium. Speeches and musical performances will be heard at the event. Guests speakers will be Ms. Olga Dibrova, the Ambassador of Ukraine, and Rasoul Khorram, the father of the idea and journalist-documentary filmmaker. The President of the City Council Pasi Hirvonen will give a speech by the City of Kotka.
“The city of Kotka invites its residents and other Finnish cities, communities and individual citizens to the activities. The flower of peace brings a message of peace to this turbulent time”, Kotka’s cultural director Tomi Purovaara describes project’s goals.
In addition to speeches and music, sunflower seeds and care instructions will be distributed at the opening ceremony of the mission. After the event, the seeds will be distributed to people in Kotka libraries. The campaign invites city dwellers of all ages and backgrounds to plant sunflower seeds in their daily lives. In May, when the ground warms up, the flower seedlings will be planted on a joint occasion in a place designated by the city, which will thus become a garden / meadow for peace during the summer. After the summer growing season in August, an event will be held at the flowers as a show of peace, friendship and compassion for the victims of wars.
“Sunflowers need each other to stay upright in the meadow, and each flower is a beautiful individual. Together in the meadow, they are a wonderful sight, regardless of the nationality or background of the sower, ”describes Emmi Inberg, a member of the working group that prepared the activity.
In Kotka, the operation is organized in cooperation with the city’s various departments, Ukrainian and Russian communities, other associations and individual citizens.
Kotka invites other Finnish cities, communities and individual citizens to the operation. The idea can be freely shared and modified to suit different situations.
In Kotka, the city’s partners include Kotka-Kymi Parish, Mieli ry, Kakspy ry, Kolibri ry, Taitojen talo / Finnish Red Cross, Rannikon Martat, Kotka Pride, Kotka Pentecostal Church, Kotka Regional Music College. The sunflower seeds of the Kotka operation are provided in cooperation with Malmgård Riistasiemen Oy.