The Global Alliance
The Global Alliance for Ministries & Infrastructures for Peace is a worldwide community of civil society campaigns, organisations, committed citizens, and elected and appointed government officials from over 40 countries (so far). The Vision and Mission of the Global Alliance are:
Vision: A world where all people, individually and collectively, embody, promote, and practice a culture of peace for the benefit of all.
Mission: To collaborate with and support governments and civil society around the world working to establish national ministries and departments of peace, and also to support efforts to develop local, regional, and national peace councils, peace academies, and other effective infrastructures for peace.
In carrying out this mission, the Global Alliance enables and facilitates the capacity of its network to share and provide one another with resources, information, encouragement, and support for existing and new national campaigns for Ministries and Departments of Peace as well as efforts to establish peace academies and other peace infrastructure elements in government and civil society. It also seeks, through the combined activities of the Global Alliance and its broader networks, to increase global understanding amongst civil societies and governments around the world of the need for Ministries and Departments of Peace and civil society counterparts at all levels.
Three countries already have such ministries – the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction in Nepal, the Ministry of National Unity, Reconciliation, and Peace in the Solomon Islands, and the Ministry of Justice and Peace in Costa Rica.
A principle activity of the Global Alliance is its support for the biennial Global Summit for Ministries and Departments of Peace. The principle aims of the Global Summit are to build relationships, share experiences, learn from one another, have trainings that expand the bank of knowledge and skills of the community and raise awareness of the movement in the eyes of governments, civil society, and the general public.
The first Global Summit, attended by delegates from a dozen countries, was held in October 2005 in the United Kingdom, where the decision to form the Global Alliance was made. The Second Global Summit, held in June 2006 in Canada, was attended by people from 18 countries. The Third Global Summit took place in Japan in September 2007 with delegates attending from 21 countries. The Fourth Global Summit took place in Costa Rica in September 2009 and was attended by over 100 people from 22 countries. The Fifth Global Summit took place in Cape Town, South Africa, in October 2011. The Sixth Summit, entitled “Nesting Peace: Creating Infrastructures to Sustain Diversity” will take place in Geneva, Switzerland, from the 16th to the 20th of September 2013. If you want to learn more about the Sixth Summit, click here.
Among the key outcomes of the Summits are an associated global youth movement, which was launched at the Canada Summit and the African Alliance for Peace, which was formed by delegates from Africa to the Japan Summit in order to extend and coordinate the movement for ministries of peace throughout Africa. The first regional summit of the African Alliance for Peace was held in May 2008 in Accra, Ghana, and the second one is planned for Abuja, Nigeria, in October 2010.
Organizational Principles of the Global Alliance for Ministries & Infrastructures for Peace
The following principles are meant as operative criteria to be used when engaging in processes of the Global Alliance, including conflict situations, in order to transform them into a positive, creative force for the fulfillment of the GA’s Mission.
1. Integrity: We commit to acting always in accordance with our principles.
2. Modeling a Culture of Peace: We commit to living our Vision by being peace and striving for self-transformation. We take responsibility for being peaceful, for peaceful outcomes, and consider peacefulness as humanity’s imperative.
3. Educating for Peace: We believe in the value of educating for peace and the crucial importance of having an educational approach in the creation of a Culture of Peace.
4. Nonviolence and Harmlessness: We pledge to act according to the principles of nonviolence and harmlessness in all our interactions. We subscribe to making the practice of empathizing with ourselves and others a priority and a foundational element of our communication. We thus resolve to respond to and connect with others on the level of their basic human needs. We trust others to also have intentions of nonviolence and harmlessness and strive to be open with each other, offering and receiving feedback kindly and without personal attachment.
5. Cultural Sensitivity and Solidarity: We are determined to recognize the legitimacy of others’ expressions and needs, to listen receptively and be respectful of ourselves and others in all ways. We seek to work with loving understanding and a conscious realization of how we impact others around us. We understand the wisdom inherent in valuing solidarity.
6. Inclusiveness, Active Participation and Empowerment: We strive to promote cooperation in all our interactions, engaging with and empowering all stakeholders for the transformation of conflict. We maintain an attitude of personal contribution while at the same time supporting others as we work together on behalf of the common good. We strive to build consensus.
7. Trusting People and Processes and Sharing Leadership: We believe the people we interact with and the processes we become a part of have a reason to be and we confide in their wisdom. Recognizing each person’s innate leadership, we honor it in ourselves as each one of us leads in her or his area of responsibility while supporting the leadership of others. We trust in sharing responsibility and sharing leadership.
8. Creativity, Flexibility and Sense of Possibility: We value being imaginative and creative in engaging with conflict. We consider a sense of possibility, being versatile and flexible to be important in order to maximize our capacity to transform ourselves and conflict around us.
9. Holistic and Systemic Thinking: We acknowledge that we live in a world of interconnection and we strive to realize the whole in our relationships and our work. We are aware of systemic dynamics and we commit to make conscious use of them. We determine to have a multidimensional and multidirectional peacebuilding approach: one that does not only reactively reconstruct pre-existing systems but proactively devises and develops new ones; one that does not only seek to address structural violence but also its underlying cultural foundation.
10. Goodwill and Respect for All Life: We realize the central importance of goodwill in creating lasting peace. We determine to practice goodwill in our relationships with all beings on Earth, human and otherwise, and our shared natural systems. We commit to sharing generously and considering sustainability. We seek to consciously create a rhythm in our work that supports life individually, as a group, for our projects and its global stakeholders. We understand the healing power of goodwill and recognize mutual healing as a key to conflict transformation. We therefore strive to develop healthy relationships and enhance the healing capacity of humanity.
11. Internal Support and Coherence: We recognize the crucial importance of affiliated national and regional organizations and infrastructures for the existence and work of the Global Alliance. We hold members of the Global Alliance to the same standards outlined in these Principles.
12. Clarity of Purpose and Belief: We maintain our focus as we strive for clarity and the practical application of our energies toward our vision. We have clear areas of responsibility and accountability. We establish clear procedures for decision-making and effective work processes. We have a firm belief in the deep value of our work and in its ultimate achievement.
13. Fun!: We resolve to allow our work to be fun and carry the positive energy we or it may need in order to be fulfilled.
Countries Currently Represented
Australia, Brasil, Cameroon, Canada, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Costa Rica, Denmark, France, Ghana, Hong Kong, India, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Phillipines, Romania, Rwanda, Senegal, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Uganda, United Kingdom, USA
An official selection process for the board took place at the 2011 Summit. For more on the current Board of Directors, click here.