Nobel Peace Center in Oslo

We went to Oslo a few months ago where we visited the Nobel Peace Center.  Opened in 2005, this remarkable museum uses exhibitions and interactive technology to introduce visitors to Alfred Nobel, the peace laureates and their works.  The Children’s Peace Center presents information on war, peace and conflict resolution in way that’s fun and engaging.  An animated film tells the true story of a young girl living in a refugee camp in the Congo and of Norwegian Nobel laureate Fridtjof Nansen who was awarded the prize his work on behalf of refugees. As much as the girls enjoyed the children’s area, they were mesmerized more by the iPads, which are used to present information in the main exhibition hall and the light and sound display of the Nobel Field exhibition, which displays a brief biography of all of the past laureates.  Walking through the Nobel Field Miss P and Miss V learned a little bit more about some historical figures they were already familiar with, such as Barak Obama, Nelson Mandela and Mother Teresa.

They were also introduced to some new ones like environmentalist Wangari Maathai who passed away yesterday.  Maathai, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004, was the founder of the Green Belt Movement, a grassroots tree-planting program whose goal was to address the issue of deforestation while at the same time empower the rural Kenyan women in Kenya who planted the trees.  I was so happy that the girls were drawn to Maathai’s story in the Nobel Field exhibition, and later in the gift shop where they came across Wangari’s Trees of Peace, a children’s book about her life.  Maybe by reading her story they will be encouraged and inspired by her life, her work, her legacy.