New Internationalist

Ideas For Action

Issue 144

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ART [image, unknown] Action

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IDEAS FOR ACTION

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Pensioners for Peace International
7 Sandfield
Bromsberrow Heath
Ledbury HR8 1NX UK
Tel: 053181 485

AIMS

To mobilise the older generation for peace and world disarmament. To spread the message that the only true road to peace lies through love, friendship and understanding. Without enemies there can be no war.

METHODS

By organising local groups, encouraging them to meet during hours of daylight and planning activities within the capabilities of the old and disabled. By organising Peace and Friendship tours, especially to countries in the Eastern Bloc. Every local group has complete autonomy but is linked through our newsletter.

SUCCESSES

We have established many local groups throughout the UK and have links with 16 other countries. Two Peace and Friendship tours have been successfully concluded to the USSR. Publication of R J M Tolhurst’s pamphlet ‘Russian Threat’ and also the promotion of ‘Images and Reality in the Soviet Union’ by Professor V L Allen and Bernard Benson’s Peace Book and Peace Bird. Pensioners Picnics for Peace have been held at Greenham Common and Upper Heyford. Our total expenditure in three and a half years has been a little over £5,000.

FAILURES

Still to come.

FUTURE PLANS

During 1985 we hope to expand local groups in the UK and to extend contacts overseas. To organise ten Peace and Friendship tours to the Soviet Union, three to Rumania and one to Prague/Dresden. To produce a newsletter in braille and cassettes for the blind. To organise Picnics for Peace at air bases all over the UK.

In 1986 our plans are to expand the 1985 programme plus undertake Peace and Friendship tours to the USA and Canada. We would like to give hospitality to Soviet citizens in our homes for special Year of Peace effort. To hold a referendum to resolve the conundrum. The Russian Threat, Myth or Reality’.

HELP NEEDED

To lift the heads of more and more pensioners from the sands of bingo and bunfights. There is no fixed membership charge. We rely on commission earned through Peace and Friendship tours and the sales of books and pamphlets. Pensioners comprise 29 per cent of the potential vote for Peace and Disarmament.

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Raw Materials Group
P 0 Box 5195
S-102 44 Stockholm
Sweden
Tel: 46-8 62 72 89

AIMS

To alert general opinion worldwide of the economic, political and military implications of the present struggle for raw materials. To introduce and analyze existing viable alternatives to the exploitation of world resources by transnational corporations and the imperialist states.

METHODS

We work in three major areas: research, publishing and contract projects.

Our research efforts are directed into two projects: The dynamics of corporate control in the minerals industry and developing a computerised system for monitoring the locus of control and power in the international minerals industry. Minerals in the economical and political development of southem Africa and the influence of the South African mining industry on this process.

We publish the international quarterly the Raw Materials Report on the political economy of natural resources (in English). This gives us a possibility to communicate our results and is also an alternative for radical researchers. Our contract projects have been carried out in co-operation with trade unions and international organizations to give specially compiled information on resources related topics.

SUCCESSES

Reaching readers in more than 50 countries interested in the importance of natural resources. Starting to build an international network providing information on corporate structure and power.

FAILURES

We have not been able to reach as many readers as necessary in order for us to have a sound economic situation

FUTURE PLANS

Consolidating the activities as mentioned above. Developing the network of people interested in sharing their knowledge and creating better methods for co-ordinating their activities.

HELP NEEDED

We need papers and articles concerning all aspects of natural resources. We would also appreciate help with publicity. Anyone interested should contact us to exchange mailing lists or distribute brochures in your organization.

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Trade Aid Movement
PO Box 11-345
Wellington
New Zealand
Tel: Wellington 851-909

AIMS

An alternative trading organisation, which aims to work for a just world by trading fairly with the powerless and using this ass vehicle to locate the inequalities in current trading patterns. By educating ourselves and other New Zealanders about trading injustices and their causes. By fighting against these injustices and working toward removing them, wherever they occur. By establishing that there is a fairer way to trade. By establishing real partnerships with producer groups and to assist them in achieving self-reliance.

METHODS

We consist of an importing organisation and 25 autonomous retail shops throughout New Zealand. All goods carry a five per cent education levy, which is used to produce information on trading partners, research on international trading issues from a New Zealand perspective and to finance campaigns to change trading policy. We trade mainly in handcrafts, but also in commodities such as tea and jute, which we use to highlight international trading injustices. Each shop has its own education outreach, talking to groups, schools, churches, local media etc.

SUCCESSES

We have helped increase access to the New Zealand market for handcrafts and some commodities. We have built up a network of people prepared to focus on trading issues and to campaign for a fairer system. We still exist.

FAILURES

Most shops are not economically viable, which lays us open to the charge that we are a charity organisation rather than a trading organisation. The economic recession has caused a downturn in orders, which has hit our producers hardest.

FUTURE PLANS

To ensure that all parts of the Trade Aid Movement become economically viable. To increase awareness of general public of trading injustices through higher media profile.

HELP NEEDED

In New Zealand: people to help in the education work and in the shops.

Internationally: networking with other trading organisations, particularly those campaigning on tea and jute and other commodities.

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[image, unknown] This page of New Internationalist is written by the groups featured on it. The space is available free and a guide for writing entries can be obtained from New Internationalist, 42 Hythe Bridge Street, Oxford, OX1 2EP.

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