We come from different places and have different backgrounds, but we all have one thing in common:
We are Committed to Positive Action!
We support the Changemakers of society
We believe that change is possible by supporting those who represent it. Human rights defenders, environmental activists, and diaspora communities from conflict areas are our most powerful catalysts for both conflict resolution and peace building.
We benefit from the knowledge our diversity brings
Many of our colleagues have fled their countries of origin in order to escape repression or violence, and have found their refuge here in The Hague. The Hague Peace Projects has helped them to consolidate their position here in The Netherlands, to reconnect with and expand their networks, and to pursue their own projects and work together with local organizations and people that help to further their human rights objectives.
How did we start?
The Hague Peace Projects was founded in 2014 by four human rights professionals who were worried by a quick succession of new conflicts emerging globally at the time: Syria, Yemen, Central African Republic, Ukraine, and Libya. At the same time, many unsolved conflicts continued to take the lives of innocent people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Congo, and many other places.
Having worked intensively with refugees and human rights defenders who had come to the Netherlands from conflict areas, we recognized in them a powerful catalyst for social change. However, there was no infrastructure for these activists who had become victims of conflict and oppression to continue their work for peace and justice. Rarely did they get involved in the established human rights and development efforts. Considering this omission as an enormous waste of wisdom and experience, we decided that a new organization needed to be created in order to provide them with the opportunity to continue their work from within their diaspora communities.
Ever since, our organization has been growing and flourishing, attracting hundreds of activists and volunteers to spend their energy on resolving conflicts and defending human rights worldwide.
At The Hague Peace Projects we build communities of trust in places where division and fear between people is the norm. Creating safe and brave spaces for dialogue helps to establish new and unlikely connections, ultimately generating common ground between communities across all lines that keep people divided: religious, ethnic, national, or political.
Starting with diaspora communities, we empower groups to reconstruct their motivations and skills to deal with conflicts peacefully, using a wide range of tools such as dialogue, research, advocacy, education, cultural events, and media.
Together we aim to contribute to well-informed, resilient, vocal, globally connected & inclusive civil societies in areas affected by conflict and oppression, capable of realizing nonviolent social and political transformation.
We believe that respectful dialogue is the beginning of a path to building understanding, trust, and cooperation.
The tools and resources of The Hague Peace Projects offer a sustainable and decentralized human rights-minded work-flow. Together with local communities we embrace inclusiveness and utilize the knowledge, expertise, and creativity that this diversity has to offer.
Without being exhaustive, our intended outputs are:
Human Rights Defender support
HRD practical and emergency support
Problem discovery and definition
Dialogue and conflict resolution
Advocacy and Lobbying
Education and awareness
By representing the changemakers of society and supporting them with the tools and resources of The Hague Peace Projects, we support cultural change from the bottom-up and drive a long-term positive impact on global human rights challenges.
Why is our work so important?
Over the past decades, instability, insecurity and oppression have spread globally.
The events of 9/11 and the violent response afterwards have rapidly worsened this trend. Many societies are facing similar challenges: refugee crises, nationalist and religious extremism, a clampdown of freedoms and a spread of violent conflict.
In the process, entire states have collapsed into chaos or succumbed to totalitarian regimes. Competing geopolitical interests, lack of leadership, and self-centered economic and political elites are actively undermining the lives and human dignity of millions. Unequal distribution of wealth and power and polarization along religious, ethnic, tribal or political lines keep people divided. Innocent people everywhere have become victims of war and left in situations of oppression, lawlessness and despair. Their voices have been neglected and their interests disregarded.
Worldwide, countless individuals are already working day-by-day to alleviate suffering and promote peace and justice within their own communities. These unnamed heroes often risk their own life and well-being in the process. Understanding their own history, culture, languages and politics like no one else, they are the ones to determine realistic ways towards justice, democracy and peace. However, the same civil society actors are often also weakened themselves by polarization, oppression, disinformation, trauma and a lack of power.
These are society’s Changemakers. Human rights defenders and diaspora communities from conflict areas are our most powerful catalysts for both conflict resolution and peace building.
It is only through a concerted effort by an inclusive civil society, that real political, social, and environmental transformation be achieved.
These Changemakers need your support!
How do we support Human Rights?
We are a support platform for human rights defenders and peace advocates.
We provide resources, counseling, capacity building, tools, networking and collaborations, classes, and a safe and brave space for dialogue and human rights enterprise.
Education and Awareness
Our grassroot experience is essential to our educational programs in schools and universities.
We raise awareness of human rights challenges and violent conflicts through our events, and our campaigns and publications in social media, magazines, and journals.
We encourage and assist in non-violent activism and conflict resolution.
This includes peaceful protest, lobbying, dialogue, intercultural and interfaith conferences, campaigning, and problem-solving with technology.
The Hague Peace Projects is a member of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The Hague Peace Projects supports the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and wants to make sure we leave a better planet for future generations.
Support our Mission
Our team consists of dedicated professionals and diaspora from all over the world with a broad expertise in conflict prevention, peace building, and human rights.
Former Environmental Researcher at one of Nicaragua’s largest protected areas, is now part of #SOSNICARAGUA, a non-violent international civil ressistance movement that works towards restablishing democracy and peace in a country torn by dictatorship and violence.
A creative generalist with years of experience in the industry. Originally an engineering graduate he has combined his technical and creative skills to launch numerous companies and as a keen human rights activist oversees the form and function of HPP projects and strategies.
Head Strategy and Design / Head The Hague Hacks
Mirko has a BA in Business Economics and a BA in Political Science at the Radboud University in Nijmegen. He is the financial secretary for the Hague Peace Projects while also co-hosting dialogue events for the Kurdish and Turkish diaspora here in the Netherlands. Mirko also provides fiscal services to other companies and organizations through his own company.
Head of Finance
Founder of Xenolearn, Claire cares deeply about diversity, equity, and inclusion. Her mission is to make the world safer for human differences.
Program Manager Education / Project Manager The Hague Hacks
“Every choice we make is powerful” – Forest Steven Whitaker
Program Manager Media
As an active member of the Nicaraguan diaspora and previous consultant for the NDI, Rayid has his finger on the pulse of human rights.
Program Manager Human Rights
Tayfun is a historian, specialized in the modern history of Turkey. He is active for The Hague Peace Projects as coordinator of the Middle East and North Africa work group, with a main focus on the Dutch-Armenian-Kurdish-Turkish dialogue and research projects. Tayfun writes for the paper ‘De Kanttekening’ and is a member of the New Amsterdam Council.
Project Officer / Work Group Leader
Erick is an Industrial Engineer, passionate about data, automation of processes and continuous improvement. As a Data Science, Data Engineer and Data Analyst certification holder from Microsoft, and Tableau desktop Specialist from Tableau and AWS Cloud Practitioner from Amazon Web Services,Erick is the Tableau user group Leader for Nicaragua.
Analytics & Data Specialist
Valentin is a Legal Practitioner and a Human Rights Activist. He holds a Master Degree (LLM) in Business Law, a Post-graduate Diploma in Legal Practice studies and a MA in Development studies with a specialization in Human Rights and Peace Studies. Currently, Valentin is a PhD candidate at International Institute of Social Studies. Valentin is an active volunteer at HPP focussing his expertise on democracy and peace-building.
Human Rights Policy Advisor
Akayezu Muhumuza Valentin
Programme counsellor for Vluchteling-Studenten UAF.
Ewing Amadi Salumu
Irene is an accomplished and goal-oriented Administrative Assistant / Human Resource professional with over 10 years of rich experience in Program Coordination in the Non-governmental Organisation (NGO) industry.
With a strong academic background, Dalila is incredibly passionate about art and environmental sustainability, with expertise in Art History and Environmental Studies. Not to mention her social media and Japanese-to-English skills.
Social Media Manager
Trony helps to harness and nurture the potential of individuals, groups, and communities in Europe and Africa. She has a background in communications, international relations and business, and is a graduate of Daystar University Kenya, and Webster University Leiden.
Shucheesmita has an MA in Human Rights, Gender, and Conflict: Social Justice Perspectives from International Institute of Social Studies, Netherlands, and an MA in International Relations from South Asian University, New Delhi. Her passions include migration and gender, peace-building, inter-faith dialogues, women’s empowerment and human rights. As an active participant in India-Bangladesh-Pakistan friendship dialogues and initiatives, she is one of the Women Deliver Young Leaders of 2018.
Work Group Leader Bangladesh
Nathalia is a Nicaraguan entrepreneur and human rights activist. Her objectives are to develop relationships and collaborate with international organizations and communities to support education, communication tools, and opportunities to fight poverty in Nicaragua while raising the awareness of human rights values, sustainable development goals, and democracy. She is also representative of SOSNicaragua-Holanda and an active member of SOSNicaragua-Europa.
Work Group Leader Nicaragua
Marie-C. has obtained an MSc degree in Biology from the Leiden University in The Netherlands. She is an executive secretary and coordinator for the DRCongo à la Carte (DRCC) foundation. At the HPP, Marie is active in the department of the Diaspora of the Great Lakes Region (DGLR) as researcher and gender expert. She has experience in teaching, gender and peace, conflict transformation and Vocational Training.
Gender Expert GLR
Shafayet is an experienced Teacher and Communication Consultant with a demonstrated history of working in the professional training & content writing industry. Skilled in Lecturing, Journalism, and Business Communication he is an education professional with a Master’s Degree focused in International Relations and Global History from Erasmus University Rotterdam. His roles at HPP include workshops and content/proposal writing.
At The Hague Peace Projects we have an large network of volunteer members who contribute to our activities with their own specific knowledge, expertise, connections, and committment.
The following volunteers that have worked at HPP also deserve a special mention:
Margot Leegwater, Alena Kahle, Nina Nout, Melanie Tuy, Ame Trandem, Waqaas, Sylvestre Bwira, Katrina Burch, Daniel Melo, Jaap Wallet, Lisanne Boersma, Yousif Fasher, Ewing, Benjamin, Jean-Claude, Bruno F. Salvetti, Leslie Newhall, Theo Kauffeld, Lars Michael Stockhausen Hektoe, Claudia Rodriguez Ortiz, Guido Willem Soeteman, Anook Cléonne, Alexander Medik, Niels den Daas, Jo Kroese, Jasper Kol, Berber Hidma
HPP Board Members
Our Board of Directors is comprised of human rights defenders and workers from around the world.
President: Berna Keskindemir
Vice President: Otieno Ong’ayo
Director, Secretary: Jakob de Jonge
Board Member: Hannibal Saad
Board Member: Ram Ramlal
Treasurer: Margot Leegwater
The Hague Peace Projects has an extensive network of friends and partnerships. These are just some of the national and international organisations that we work with: