Cyprus Mail

Yarn bombing for peace and friendship across the divide

A GROUP of Cypriot women are wowing passers-by with their yarn bombing of the old anchor at Paphos harbour.

Hundreds of tourists and locals have been taking photos of the colourful installation of the old anchor which sits close to the port authority buildings in Kato Paphos.

The magnificent crochet piece, has been created by 60 women from both the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, and aims to promote peace, friendship and freedom, according to one of the co-ordinators, Christiana Mouzouri.

She told the Cyprus Mail: “After forging a great friendship with Nilgun Akin, a Turkish Cypriot woman who lives in Kyrenia three years ago, we decided to start the Cyprus Women’s Association, which we hoped would encourage Turkish Cypriot women and Greek Cypriot women to have a coffee, and form friendships.”

Out of this came Peace2Peace, a bi-communal initiative which aims to involve women from all over Cyprus, enabling them to exchange ideas, break down prejudices and really get to know each other.

The pair, who now meet up every week, first met whilst their daughters participated in an NGO programme- The Cyprus Friendship Programme- CFP- which saw their daughters travel to the United States for a month and stay with host families.

“No borders can stop us and our friendship,” she said.

yarn bomb 2

Mouzouri said that she only started crocheting three years ago, after meeting Akin, who inspired her to take it up.

“Then, Elena Daniel had the idea to yarn bomb the anchor and asked if we would do it as a Peace2Peace initiative and I said let’s give it a try.”

She said that she believes this is the first ‘yarn bomb’ to take place in Cyprus and pointed out that the idea is not an artistic one, but instead a peace building project to bring people together.

Mouzouri said they have been overwhelmed by the fantastic response after a call on Facebook on July 6 resulted in 57 women from both communities joining up to become involved.

“There were a number of young ladies learning to crochet as well, as they wanted to give us a piece each for the activity.”

Mouzouri said that this was a ‘pilot venture’ and the first of many more to come. In fact, there were so many stunning pieces which couldn’t be used on the anchor, that they will be included in the next yarn bomb which will ‘involve a tree,’ and will take place in September at the gardens of the municipal gallery in Paphos.

“This is the first of many more to come and we will also be participating in a much bigger project for Pafos2017 titled ‘re-visiting Moutallos’ which is the Turkish Cypriot neighbourhood of Paphos. We will yarn bomb many places there,” she said.

Mouzouri also noted that she has been contacted by women from other towns and cities in Cyprus, wanting to join in the venture and create yarn bomb installations all over the island.



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