International Club Creates Peace Symbol


The “All Are Welcome” symbol, designed by the BHS International Club, hangs in the window of Tradewinds on Church St. on Friday, Jan. 20. The image was created by students to spread peace throughout the community.

Burlington High School students have partnered with a local pediatrician to respond to what they see as an increase in anti-immigrant rhetoric towards New Americans, refugees and asylum seekers, according to a Jan. 13 news release.

Dr. Andrea Green reached out to BHS after experiencing concerns from her practice, to see if she could support students in feeling safe and welcome.

The BHS International Club, advised by ESL Teacher Susan Blethen, met with Green to design a symbol. They wanted to make it visible that Burlington is a welcoming community for all, according to the release.

The students settled on an image of two hands supporting a dove.

This is a symbol that represents every immigrant that has come to United States for better life and place to live”, said Radhika, a BHS senior, in the news release.

The dove represents peace and immigration because birds migrate much like immigrants looking for welcoming place to live. The hands show that our community welcomes and protects everyone in a safe space.

The students chose an English slogan, “All Are Welcome,” because they did not want anyone of any background, affiliation, or identity to feel excluded, according to the release.

The students hope that our community will freely post their symbol in stores, offices, and homes to show solidarity with the immigrant community. The symbol was unveiled on the Church Street Marketplace on Friday, Jan. 20, and pins with the image were distributed to teachers and students. Several local businesses have begun displaying the logo in their window.

Members of the Burlington High School International Club pose for a photo on Church St. in Burlington on Friday, Jan. 20, after announcing their “All Are Welcome” logo. | Photo: Courtesy Susan Blethen