Co-Creating a Festival for a Stress Free Summer

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Maria Sakarias

Maria Sakarias

Coordinator at MasterPeace and Founder of ma.sa.me.

We have reached the peak of the summer. The global COVID19 pandemic may have slowed down, but its impact has not. In my country, Estonia, everything seems to be “back to business” as if nothing happenedbut we must not forget that many people, both in Europe and around the world are only now starting to experience the consequences of the outbreak on their daily lives.

Losing jobs, postponing graduations, living in isolation, grappling with uncertainty and living with deep fear for the health of our loved ones—all of this has given rise to an increase in stress and put pressure on the mental health and well-being at a global scale. As a global movement that advocates for peace and positivity, we decided that it’s time to ACT.

How did we start?  

One of the core values of MasterPeace co-creation, based on our firm belief that we are stronger if we join efforts and work together with other, like-minded organizations. For the purpose of this initiative, we teamed up with Peace Revolution, a project by the World Peace Initiative—a global movement based in Thailand, but active in more than 100 countries around the world. They offer various online and offline programs for self-development and meditation based on a vision that creating inner peace ultimately leads to creating outer peace (PIPOPeace In, Peace Out). 

It became clear that we are two global movements with similar values and objectives: we wanted to bring high-quality knowledge and tools free of cost to many people as possible. We work with trainers around the world whose expertise is complementary to each other. Thus, we did not only have the strength and the resources, but an actual responsibility to provide our global audiences with new perspectives, useful tools, andperhaps most importantly—moments of peace and positivity.

Combining our knowledge and networks, we launched a month-long online awareness campaign about mental health and well-being, which culminated with the Stress Free Summer Festivala week of free online workshops, facilitated by trainers from both organizations.

"Mental health is a state of mental well-being in which people cope well with the many stresses of life, can realize their own potential, can function productively and fruitfully, and are able to contribute to their communities. [...] Good mental health is critical to each country’s response to, and recovery from, COVID-19."

Policy Brief: COVID-19 and the Need for Action on Mental Health (the UN, 13 May 2020)

What did we achieve?

14 WORKSHOPS

We covered a diverse range of topics from mindfulness and meditation to storytelling, contact dance, mandala-drawing and self-massage. All free of cost.

12 DESTINATIONS

Our trainers were from Morocco, Belgium, Colombia, Kosovo, Cambodia, Nepal, Costa Rica, Kyrgyzstan, Ghana, Kenya, the Netherlands and Jordan. Many facilitated online for the first time.

70+ COUNTRIES

We received registrations from a total of 72 different countries, ranging from South Korea to Syria, from Hungary to Honduras. Showing the power of combining two global networks.

300+ PARTICIPANTS

We brought together more than 300 participants from 5 continents on Zoom and Facebook. With 2 workshops every day, we could welcome participants from both Fiji and Colombia.

10.000+ VIDEO VIEWS

Thanks to Facebook Live, we managed to reach larger audiences than ever before. Even a brief 1-minute view can plant a seed of awareness! We will upload all videos on YouTube.

200.000+ IN OUTREACH

Our online social media campaign for #StressFreeSummer #SFSF2020 and #SummerInPhoto reached more than 200.000 people through our social media channels.

This is what our workshops looked like...

Here's what our participants and facilitators said:

And here are the recordings for you to enjoy: (COMING SOON!)

Want to know more about our partner?

World Peace Initiative Foundation (WPI)
Peace Revolution, a Project by WPI

Final note: This initiative was run as a pilot project to learn and test the concept. We had little prior experience and no external funding. I would like to express my personal gratitude to the commitment and hard work of Nesreen Khashman and Elvis Kumar from Peace Revolution for making it happen. It was inspiring to work together. — Maria

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