Preventing violent extremism (PVE) is an issue that is addressed nationally, regionally and globally since the turn of the millennium. This is generally pursued through coercive hard power i.e. military dominated Peace Support Operations and surveillance. Although these methods have proven effective to a certain extent it comes at a high cost both financially and in human lives, while still failing to completely eradicate violent extremism.
Interfaith Dialogue on Violent Extremism (iDove)
The Interfaith Dialogue on Violent Extremism (iDove) initiative takes a comprehensive approach in Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE). These approaches include: religion–through religious leaders, faith based organization and interfaith organizations- and diplomacy; after all, too often, acts of violence are committed in the name of religion.
The rationale behind this initiative is to establish a counter movement which emphasizes peaceful and educational messages; touch upon contentious religious matters; provide space for dialogue; identify, compare and contrast the root causes emanating from the different countries, regions or continents i.e. developmental & socio-political issues. In addition, this approach will also require security and developmental stakeholders to put into consideration local and international faith based organizations/institutions as key drivers of peace building, sustainable development and reconciliation.
This initiative further aims to achieve among others:-
- Promote values of tolerance, mutual respect and better understanding centred on intra and interfaith, interreligious and inter-cultural values that are the core principles for integration and peace.
- Achieve behavioural change of communities and individuals; Redefine the contemporary human being values for tolerance and integration
- Reach out, educate and de-radicalize target groups (particular focus on youth) and train respective stakeholders.
The Intercontinental Youth Forum (February 2017)
This forum will provide a platform to youth and experts/ practitioners of interfaith dialogue, preventing violent extremism and de-radicalization from Africa and Europe to discuss different means of preventing violent extremism by drawing the soft power of religion and dialogue as well as make policies relevant to both Africa and Europe. The forum will focus on the following objectives:
- To develop strategic directions for the iDove project based on principles and methods of interfaith dialogue on preventing violent extremism and de-radicalization.
- To develop suitable concepts and applications for the iDove website which will be launched at the Forum.
- To develop concepts and mechanisms to support small scale youth-run projects to be implemented in Africa and Europe within the project objectives.
- 4. To design plans for a monitoring and evaluation system to monitor the implementation of those small scale projects and for follow up meetings annually.
The forum is primarily geared towards empowering youth to conceptualize and develop projects using the two major approaches of the iDove project: Social Media and Small Scale Projects. Therefore, the following criteria will form the basis of the participant selection process:
- Aged between 20-35
- Citizen or resident of a European or an African country
- Fluency in either English or French, in addition to fluency in another language
- Proven interest in interfaith, de-radicalization and/or preventing/countering violent extremism, as evident from having:
– Developed projects related to those topics
– Participated in projects related to those topics
– Conducted formal research on those topics
– Participated in conferences, workshops and forums on those topics
Applications must be completed using the online application system and must be submitted by midnight of Sunday, 15 January 2017. Notifications of admission to the forum will be sent during the last week of January 2017. The organizers will cover all travel and accommodation costs associated with the forum.