September 21 International Day of Peace was celebrated ’round the world.  In recognition of this day and 9/11, the Global Awareness program of Au Pair in America held a “peace” art contest for au pairs.  How does “peace” look to you?  Paint a picture, write a poem.  Many countries were represented as au pairs across the U.S. sent in paintings and poetry.  First place for a painting was won by Maxellende Chirol of France, second by Nina Weidemann of Germany and third prize went to Tatiana Dulcey of Colombia.  To view these and all other entries, go to

Poetry winners were “For Thousand Years,” Sofia Toubani, France, first prize, “Peace” by Anna Maria Wesselbaum, Germany took second place, and “Common Desire” by Bianca Ribeiro Campos, Brazil was the third place winner.

Sofia Toubani’s entry “For Thousand Years” speaks to the role au pairs play in contributing to a better understanding of other cultures:


For Thousand years, people have been fighting

Fighting for money

Fighting for lands

Fighting for religion

Fighting for rights

For thousand years, people have been dying

Dying for food

Dying because of wars

Dying because of global warming

Dying because of terrorism

For thousand years, people have been dreaming

Dreaming about a better world

Dreaming about a better life

Dreaming about no more discrimination

Dreaming about peace

For many years, au pairs have been creating friendship all around the world

No matter the home country

No matter the religion

No matter the first language

No matter the skin color

At least, somewhere, au pairs generate peace. And I love it.

Sofia Toubani

Many thanks to all au pairs who took the time to express their views.  We heard from so many of them thanking us for developing such “an important project.”  We learn from each other and take tiny steps towards a future of peace.