This is a call to youth aged 18-25 from MENA wanting to tackle violent extremism by building inclusive societies with understanding and respect among cultural and religious communities
- Are you between 18 and 25 years old? *
- Are you a citizen of a MENA country and do you currently live in this region?
- Are you interested in taking part in an intercultural learning experience with other young people from MENA and improve your actions to promote peace?
- Are you part of a youth-led organization, network or initiative?
- Do you want to increase your ability to contribute to peace and social inclusion in your community, country and region?
- Are you in the beginning stages of your involvement in this type of work and want to learn more?
If yes, apply now for a chance to be selected for a fully funded participation to the UNAOC Young Peacebuilders in MENA 2019 programme.
Deadline extended! Apply by 10 March 2019
** Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, State of Palestine, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen
1. The United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC)
UNAOC was established in 2005, as an initiative of Secretary-General Kofi Annan and co-sponsored by the Governments of Spain and Turkey. UNAOC works towards a more socially inclusive world, by building mutual respect among peoples of different cultural and religious identities, and highlighting the will of the world’s majority to reject violent extremism and embrace diversity. UNAOC project activities are fashioned around Youth, Education, Media and Migration. UNAOC recognizes the critical role that programming and policy-making in these areas can play in reducing polarization and identity-based tensions and in helping to build bridges between communities. The Alliance benefits from the political support of the Group of Friends, a community of 146 countries, international and regional organizations, which actively promotes the Alliance’s objectives.
Learn more about UNAOC and our programming for young people here.
2. Young Peacebuilders in MENA: Programme overview and timeline
Guided by the principle that youth are key actors to achieve peace and prevent violent extremism, as stated by UN Security Council resolutions 2250 and 2419 and the United Nations Secretary General’s Plan of Action on Preventing Violent Extremism, UNAOC develops educational programming to enhance the ability of young people and their organizations to foster mutual respect, understanding and long-term positive relationships between peoples of different cultures and religions. You may find more information about UNAOC’s Young Peacebuilders initiative here, or about the 2016 West Africa edition here and 2017-18 MENA edition here.
The Young Peacebuilders in Middle East and North Africa (MENA) 2019 edition is designed to strengthen the skills of young women and men from the MENA region in tackling negative stereotypes, prejudice and xenophobia while providing them with access to regional and global peacebuilding networks and raising visibility of their innovative and effective peace work in the field. The long-term goal is the integration of young peacebuilders in governmental peace processes / policies.
Like the 2017-18 edition, the 2019 edition is funded by AEXCID (Agencia Extremeña de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo).
In order to participate, applicants must commit to completing all phases of the programme, outlined below. Online involvement is part-time, while the workshop is a full time, one-week experience. Participation in the results-sharing symposium is also mandatory.
During the programme, 20 selected participants will:
- Learn about negative stereotypes and how to critically analyze them to reduce their prevalence;
- Understand different perspectives in identity-based conflict and gain tools to develop solutions at local, national and regional levels and transform conflicts peacefully;
- Identify push and pull factors creating conditions conducive to violent extremism;
- Develop competences to use different forms of media or expressive arts as a way to create alternative narratives, reduce polarization and promote social inclusion;
- Learn how to successfully design and run your project.
- Part 1: online phase (2 months). Participants access the course through an online collaborative platform provided by UNAOC. UNAOC and other trainers facilitate the first few modules of the curriculum, giving an opportunity to participants to get to know each other prior to their first in-person meeting. They also start getting exposed to tools and concepts, engage in discussion and start reflecting on their peace actions. Time commitment: 2 to 3 hours per week to complete the modules (some work can be completed offline).
- Part 2: face-to-face workshop (9 days). All participants travel to complete the training and experience how peacebuilding is successfully implemented through 1 or 2 local field visits. They also work on the development of their own action plan. Time commitment: one week (6 working days + 3 days for travel, arrival and departure activities).
- Part 3: applied learning (3/4 months). Implementation of a personal peace initiative: participants are guided by UNAOC’s professional trainers and stay connected with other participants through the online platform, while reporting on the implementation of their projects.
- Part 4: results sharing symposium (4 days). Participants are invited to participate in a symposium during which they share their experience, lessons learned, achievements and recommendations with a broader audience of practitioners, policy makers, media and the general public. They also engage with this audience on topics related to intercultural dialogue, peace and security. Time commitment: 4 days (2 day symposium + 2 days for travel, arrival and departure activities).
3. Tentative timeline and logistics
- January-February 2019: call for applications;
- By April 26, 2019: selected participants are notified;
- May 2019-July 2019: selected participants take part in introductory online modules (part 1);
- August 2019: participants travel to take part in the face-to-face workshop at a location to be determined (part 2);
- August-November 2019: participants commit to conduct peace activities in the three/four months following the workshop (part 3)
- End of November-Beginning of December 2019: Results-sharing symposium at a location to be determined.
Language: The working language of the programme is English.
4. Costs covered by the organizers
All selected youth participants will be provided with:
- Round-trip travel (international or domestic flight, economy class) to the city of the face-to-face workshop as well as to the city of the symposium;
- Shared accommodation (double-rooms), with a participant from the same gender, in the city of the workshop and the city of the symposium;
- Meals and coffee breaks during the official duration of the workshop and the symposium;
- Shuttles or reimbursement of transportation to/from the airport and hotel in the city of the face-to-face workshop and city of the symposium.
5. Costs covered by the participants
For the workshop and symposium, youth participants will be responsible for their transportation to and from the airport in their country of residence, as well as any personal and incidental expenses incurred outside of the official portions of the workshop, such as souvenirs, equipment, additional food, etc.
6. Selection of participants
Youth participants aged 18-25 will be selected on the basis of merit demonstrated through motivation and interest, their experience and their potential for dissemination and applications of lessons learned. The selection committee will ensure balance in terms of age, gender, geography, and diversity of backgrounds (cultural, educational, professional) among selected participants. In addition, special attention will be paid to ensure participation of youth from marginalized or disadvantaged groups. The selection committee will be composed of representatives of UNAOC, youth-led structures and relevant stakeholders in the field.
Eligibility criteria (all requirements must be met in order to be considered eligible):
- Age: Be 18-25 years of age for the total duration of the project (May 21, 2019 – December 15, 2019). To be considered eligible, applicants must be born on or between December 16, 1993 and May 21, 2001.
- Region: Be a citizen of one of the following MENA region countries: Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Israel, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, State of Palestine, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, Yemen.
- Organization: Be active (staff, volunteer, etc.) in a non-government and non-for-profit youth-led organization, network, initiative or movement (led by youth for the benefit of youth) and have the ability to consult with and reach a wider group of young people, audience or network, including at the grassroots and community level.
- Commitment: demonstrate commitment to diversity and pluralism, nonviolence, peaceful and inclusive societies. The organizations and networks represented should: Adhere to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the principles and values of the Charter of the United Nations; have internal democratic and transparent processes of leadership, decision-making and consultation; be independent, unaffiliated with any political party.
- Language: Command of English is sufficient to take part in the online phase and in-person workshop. The applicant understands English very well; possesses intermediate to fluent levels of English, which allow her/him to participate to the conversation and input.
- Prior experience: the applicant has never taken part in a programme of UNAOC (Summer School, Youth Solidarity Fund, Intercultural Innovation Award, Plural+, PeaceApp, Youth Event at the UNAOC Global Forum, Fellowship Program)
- Passport: In order to be accepted in this programme, selected applicants must hold an international passport valid until at least June 25, 2020. Failure to provide a copy in due time will result in cancellation of participation.
- The application is duly completed, submitted by the deadline and contains all supporting documentation, requested as part of the call. Half-complete applications or applications filled in other languages than English will not be reviewed and considered.
- Motivation and contribution to the programme: the applicant demonstrates that she/he is highly motivated to complete all portions of the programme.
- Interest in themes: the applicant shows some experience in issues related to intercultural dialogue, peacebuilding and preventing violent extremism through examples of initiatives he/she is part of or is demonstrating a great interest to get involved in this set of issues.
- Experience and potential: The applicant is at the beginning stages of his/her involvement or career in the field of peacebuilding and has specific goals to improve his/her skills and to make contribution to peace.
- Outreach: The applicant and his/her organization have the capacity and motivation to absorb and disseminate the lessons learned back to their community, organization and to a wider network or audience.
- Future impact and follow up: the applicant expressed his/her strong commitment to conduct personal peace initiatives in their community during the implementation phase and beyond
In order to be considered complete and valid, application package must include the following and be submitted through the online application system available at apply.unaoc.org:
- An application form, completed and certified by the applicant;
- A copy of the identification page of your international passport.
Word/character limit for each question in the application form needs to be respected. The application system automatically counts words and characters.
The application deadline is
February 23, 2019 March 10, 2019, 11:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time (New York).