Alex Handyside was awarded the inaugural Rotary Club of Halifax Harbour Peacebuilder Award by Past President Jillian Gibson.
September 21st is not only the date of our 110-Year Gala, but also the International Day of Peace. Rotarians are Peacebuilders. It’s embedded right there in our mission statement: We provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through our fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.
The Peacebuilder Award recognizes a Rotarian who advances world understanding, tolerance, empathy, goodwill and peace. Appreciating that peace is not the absence of war, the recipient strives to create conditions of well-being for all. They are action-oriented, build community, and look for ways to break down inequalities by offering solutions. In day-to-day interactions, peacebuilders bring people together, listen to different voices and build consensus toward lasting change.

Alex has been a Rotarian for 18 years. He joined Dartmouth East in 2005, moved to the Dartmouth Club in 2008, where he served as Club President, before joining Halifax Harbour in 2014. Alex is an annual supporter of the Rotary Foundation, and is a Paul Harris Fellow +5.
Alex is involved in so many facets of our club. As a member of the International Committee, he champions a water project called “Roll out the Barrell”. He enjoys liaising with our youth through Rotaract, Interact and Youth Exchange. He can be found on numerous committees, whether holding the banner at the Pride Parade, making sandwiches for Souls Harbour or collecting trash from roadsides.  He cares deeply about connecting with our community and fellow Rotarians. Feel like playing pool and eating curry?  He’s your guy to get us all engaged!
Does all this build peace? You bet.
About a year ago, our club became an official Rotary Peacebuilder Club, and we asked members to think about how we can increase the impact of our actions Alex, shared this: “The challenge will be to make such opportunities more than just 'spin', because adding the spin of Peace will be easy. The last thing we would want is to be accused of 'spin'.” We then thought of the idea of installing a Peace Pole across the street in the Peace and Friendship Park. This pole would have the words “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in different languages. Alex replied, “I like the idea of Peace Poles in Halifax, but ONLY if one of the four languages on the pole is Mi'kmawi. Without that, I think a Peace Pole in Halifax would lack real meaning.”
Thank you, Alex, for being a Rotary Peacebuilder!