Charities in the Temple of Peace
The LNU was widely supported, though financially vulnerable; and its successor after the Second World War, the United Nations Association (UNA) Wales, fared no better. Supporters of the work at the Temple of Peace were concerned that something had to be done, as UNA Wales was short on members and money. It had difficulty in providing the leadership needed for Wales’ response to major campaigns, such as International Co-operation Year in 1965 and International Human Rights Year in 1968. The idea came about to form a ‘Welsh Centre for International Affairs’ (WCIA).
In 1968 a Western Mail editorial commented that this idea was “exciting and interesting” and would “encourage Welshmen to look beyond the confines of Wales and Britain to extend their knowledge and understanding of the rest of the world”. In 1970 a proposal to form the WCIA was formally adopted by the Committee set up by the then Secretary of State for Wales, George Thomas MP (later Viscount Tonypandy), to mark the 25th anniversary of the UN. The organisations on that 25th anniversary committee – the Welsh Office, local authorities, the University of Wales and colleges of education, MPs, trade unionists, industrialists, the churches, political parties the media and voluntary organisations – became the WCIA’s Standing Conference, thereby also extending the range of organisations associated with the Temple of Peace.
The WCIA was officially opened on 11 October 1973 by Lady Tweedsmuir, Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Hywel Francis, MP for Aberavon, once said in the House of Commons:
“The Welsh Centre for International Affairs… has for decades played a vital role. Its quiet, educational voice of tolerance and reason needs to be listened to and valued in Wales and beyond. It deserves our full support and we should be proud of its work.”
Today, the WCIA inspires people to think and act on global issues so everyone in Wales can contribute to creating a fairer and more peaceful world. By chosing the Temple of Peace as a venue, you become part of its great history and support the charitable work of the WCIA.