Who is Arkansas WAND?
We are the Arkansas chapter of WAND Inc. (Women’s Action for New Directions) that was founded in the 1970s by Dr. Helen Caldicott as Women’s Action for Nuclear Disarmament to educate people about the growing threat of a nuclear holocaust. When the Cold War ended the name was changed and WAND concentrated on redirecting excessive military spending to the things that give us real security such as education, health care, environmental protection and homeland security.
Under the Obama administration there is a window of opportunity to take the steps necessary to eventually abolish nuclear weapons from the earth. Arkansas WAND is joining our national organization in educating ourselves about nuclear issues and actively promoting the political will In the US Congress to work toward disarmament. We were elated that the New START was ratified in December2010 , with the aye votes of our two senators.
Arkansas WAND was founded in 1997 and has over 350 members primarily in Central Arkansas and over 500 on our on-line mailing list. We have monthly pot-lucks for fellowship and education about our issues, and special events during the year, i.e., the Mother’s Day luncheon, Hiroshima and Nagasaki remembrance and July 4th party on the USS Razorback. We sponsored the Beacon of Peace and Hope on the site of the Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum on the north side of the Arkansas River and are now raising funds for the Peace Garden that will surround the Beacon.
We are a member of the Arkansas Coalition for Peace and Justice and have worked closely with the Coalition in staging peace rallies and educational events. We work with numerous other groups on special projects. We were part of the founding group of Arkansas Action for Peace, which brought Gila Svirsky, Israeli peace activist, to Little Rock for a week of public events.
WAND members are available to present programs on the military budget and nuclear disarmament. We also have a library of videos and books on alternatives to war, nuclear weapons, weapons in space and conflict resolution that can be borrowed and educational materials from WAND for distribution.