Vacancy: Fundraiser

The Hague Peace Projects is looking to strengthen its team with a new colleague who will specifically work on fundraising. In an international team you will help the The Hague Peace Projects to develop and implement new projects in the field of conflict analysis and peace building.

The Hague Peace Projects is a young and dynamic organization. After its first two years, many new opportunities are showing up: new initiatives, new themes, new partners and new projects for peace building. The Hague Peace Projects wants to keep up with these new opportunities and is looking to strengthen its team in order to be able to realize these ideas.

Tasks & Responsibilities:

• Designing overall fundraising strategy
• Writing project proposals
• Interacting with potential donors and funds
• Networking, identifying relevant partners
• Developing crowd funding strategies

Qualifications:

• Excellent writing and editing skills and highly developed communication skills
• Pro-active attitude and being able to work very independently
• Affinity with the main theme of The Hague Peace Projects: conflict and peace building
• Affinity with financial matters, with a commercial attitude
• Fluent in Dutch and preferably English

What we offer:

• An insider experience of a young and growing organization
• Access to The Hague Peace Project’s professional relations
• Being part of a enthusiastic and dedicated team where you are involved in decision-making and planning
• Possibility of creating your own job

Please bear in mind that HPP is currently unable to offer paid positions. Send your motivation letter and CV to info@thehaguepeace.org.

Expert meeting on the conflict in the Great Lake Region

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How can diaspora communities from the Great Lakes region in Africa contribute to peace in their countries of origin? This question will be a central theme during the diaspora conference that The Hague Peace Projects (HPP) will organize in the first week of November. In the run-up to this conference, a first expert meeting took place on Wednesday, May 27th. During this meeting a selection of representatives of the diasporas from Burundi, Rwanda, Congo and Uganda discussed the proposed themes and goals of the conference.

First of all, the current situation of the conflict Region was evaluated and a short analysis was made about the root causes of conflict in each of the different countries surrounding the Great Lakes.  Secondly, the question about the possible role of diaspora communities in Europe and ways in which  it could contribute to peace was discussed. The invited experts agreed that, although there is already debate taking place on a small scale in Europe, there is a great need for a platform to meet and exchange views among the different diaspora communities.

The recent history of The Great Lake Region, which is full of violence and suffering,  is for many still a open wound. Not only for people living in the region but also for the diaspora living in the Netherlands. This prevents many people from speaking out. Many issues are still sensitive and a lack of trust between different groups among the diaspora communities prevents a healthy and open debate about the future of the region. The conference can contribute to establish mutual trust and cooperation among people who could become actors for positive change in the region. Increased debate and effective organizing  could help to provide decision takers with accurate information, recommendations and initiatives to give a strong impetus to the peace process.  The conference aims therefore to provide an free and common space for discussion where the voices of everyone are being heard. Much more use could me made from the knowledge and commitment of the diaspora communities to devise peaceful visions for the region.

The conference will take place in The Hague in the first week of November, 2015.

Education on conflict and peace-building in Zoetermeer

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The 26th of May, The Hague Peace Projects was invited to speak at several school classes of the bilangual department of the Alfrink College in Zoetermeer, The Netherlands. The school organized a special project week about Conflict and Peace. Sylvestre Bwira and Jakob de Jonge gave a presentation of their work as an NGO that works for peace.

Sylvestre told the students about his experiences as a human rights defender in Eastern Congo, a region torn apart by war since many decades. Also he gave his view on some of the causes of the conflict. According to him one of the big problems is the use of children and young people as fighters. In some areas the actual fighting is done by armies and militias containing as much as 80% children between the ages of 8 and 17 years old.  Being poorly educated and easy to influence, they often believe they are fighting for a good cause. They have a lot of energy and aren’t always capable of judging what is right or wrong and this energy is often misused by people in high places to fight for them, says Bwira. They do not go to school and will grow up as irresponsible adults, incapable of taking care of the future of Congo.

Another issue Bwira talked about is, what he calls, ‘the confiscation of truth’. There is a saying: “the first victim in any war is the truth“. This means that people in high places define what is true and what is not. Often denying obvious facts and legitimate alternative viewpoints, these people try to define their personal version of reality as the absolute truth. Therefore the education that students get in the Netherlands, is very important. Because it will learn students methods of how to do research and how to know what is really true and what are lies and propaganda. Establishing the truth about a conflict, answers to questions like ‘who are the real actors?’, ‘what are the reasons for conflict?’ and ‘who finances the war?‘ etc, is the first step towards peace.

At some point one of the students asked Sylvestre: ‘if you had one minute to get your message to the whole world, what would you say?’ He replied: ‘I would say to everyone: disarm yourselves, let your feelings of anger go and start talking to each other’. Sylvestre cited Mandela, who said to the people who asked him to be the president of South Africa: ‘I will only be your leader if you stop using your weapons and accept that the only way forward is through discussion and dialogue‘.

The Hague Peace Projects regularly gives lectures and lessons  at schools and participates in discussions and debates and about the subject of conflict and peace-building. If your school or group is interested in a presentation, please contact us at: info@thehaguepeace.org.