In North Carolina, the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and Peace Action for years have partnered on our shared mission to work for peace and reduce the Pentagon budget—a difficult dialogue to have in a place considered by some to be the most military friendly U.S. state.

In May, Peace Action presented AFSC with its 2013 Peacemaker Award, citing AFSC’s outstanding work educating the public about the war in Afghanistan, as well as AFSC’s work to educate the general public about the costs to people in the U.S. because of the bloated Pentagon budget.

David Harris, chair of NC Peace Action, noted the great value and importance of the work AFSC did with Windows and Mirrors: Reflections on the War in Afghanistan, a traveling mural exhibit that makes a powerful statement on a nearly invisible reality—the grave human consequences of war. Displayed at Guilford College in March, the exhibit of more than 45 large-scale paintings attracted visitors from all over North Carolina.

In accepting the award, longtime volunteer Susan Ikenberry told attendees that AFSC was very honored to accept this award on behalf of all the AFSC staff and volunteers who deeply believe in the power of love to overcome violence.

Susan noted how important and valuable the Peace Action-AFSC collaboration has been in working together to organize town hall meetings, visit members of Congress, draft resolutions, paint murals, host exhibits, and collectively call attention to the budget priorities of our country as a whole.

Susan also recognized NC Peace Action for the gift and blessing they give to North Carolina. “We look forward to continuing to work with NC Peace Action, standing together in North Carolina,” she said.