Global Crowdfunding Campaign: Please Help Support Youth Peaceworkers from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine

Personal Request for Your Support – from Kai Brand-Jacobsen, Director of the Department of Peace Operations (DPO) of PATRIR:
For Youth Peace Workers from Syria, Libya, Iraq, Yemen and Ukraine

Global Crowdfunding Campaign: Support Youth Peaceworkers from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine

Dear friends, colleagues and partners around the world,

We’ve launched a global crowdfunding campaign to raise support for amazing youth peace activists and peace workers from some of the worst war affected countries in the world today. These are young people working to stop the violence and killing in Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine.

We’re trying to get support for them to take part in the 10-days International Youth Peace Forum: Global Youth Rising 2016, where they’ll receive deep training on concrete peacebuilding skills, be able to build alliances and learn together with others from around the world, and strengthen their vision, courage, confidence and abilities to work to overcome the drivers and impact of violence in their countries.

For many of us all over the world when we see what’s happening in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere we often feel powerless. We want to do something to help but we don’t know how. Here, we’re giving you a way. Even a small donation can be meaningful and make a major difference to the amazing activists and peace workers we’re trying to support.

Today there are over 300.000 children and youth in armed movements and conflicts world-wide. Over 30.000 have been recruited from 80 countries to fight for ISIS / Daesh. What we’re trying to do is something different: empower amazing and courageous individuals with the skills and tools to prevent war and violence, stop it when it’s happening, and help their countries and communities heal and recover after. To do this though, we need your help.

Please visit the “Empowering Young Peace Leaders” global crowdfunding campaign today and help make a difference the life of a courageous young peace builder – and for the future of their people and country. From $10 to $10000, every donation really does help. You can also help by sharing this appeal through your networks. It would mean a lot to us.

I’ve spent 20 years working in peacebuilding around the world. I started myself internationally when I was 17. I know and believe in the power and importance of helping courageous young people in communities and countries affected by war to find a better way. Your support can help make that possible.

If you have questions or want to know more about the International Youth Peace Forum: Global Youth Rising 2016 and what you’d actually be supporting you can write to me directly at You can also visit the website at or join us on Facebook at:

100% of all funds raised will go directly to making it possible for incredible and courageous activists and peaceworkers from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine and some incredible peace workers from other parts of the world to take part. If you have donated you can also let us know your preferences for where you’d like your support to go. We also give you the chance to meet together with those you’ve supported via skype or by phone, and to speak with some of the amazing peace workers taking part in the International Youth Peace Forum: Global Youth Rising 2016 as trainers, support, coaches and mobilisers. You can find out more about them by visiting and reading their bios at

Thank you for your support. It makes a difference.

In peace,
Kai Frithjof Brand-Jacobsen
Director, Department of Peace Operations (DPO)
Peace Action, Training and Research Institute of Romania (PATRIR)



There’s also Nineveh: a request for help contacting media around the world

To all my family, friends and colleagues in the world: I need your help. This is a personal request from me to you. It would mean a lot to me if you take a moment to read it. Thank you.

There has been Brussels, Lahore, Baghdad, Mosul…but there’s also Nineveh

We’ve all seen the terrible violence in Brussels this last week. Many of us have also seen the violence in Mosul, Baghdad and Lahore. Right now I’m in a city called Duhok, in KRG – Iraq. It’s a few kilometres from Nineveh – somewhere that has come to mean a lot to me. Over the past several months I’ve been working with people from Nineveh – people who are Muslim, Yezidi, Christian, Turkmen and more, men and women, young and old, tribal leaders, Presidents, youth, mayors, activists, journalists, survivors. Almost all of them have been displaced from the fighting and war here – the violence many of you think of connected to ‘ISIS’ / Daesh.

And these people that I have come to know, to admire, to respect, to love…are amazing. They are women who have been raped and survived or driven from their homes or had family members they love killed…and with their courage have created a Women’s Peace Alliance uniting women from all communities, working together for peace. They are young people who have seen genocide and killing and, again, been driven from their homes and had people they love killed…and have chosen to go into refugee camps and help survivors, to hold trauma recovery processes, to create themselves a youth peace centre, to take brooms and buckets and go back into their villages and towns destroyed by war and…clean up. They are President Bashar Kiki of the Nineveh Provincial Council who has become passionately involved and worked to create a Peace Council for Nineveh bringing tribal and religious leaders together – together(!) to work for peace instead of war. They are my brothers, my sisters, my family. They are courage, humanity, in the face of loss and suffering and pain few of us could even image in our worst nightmares, and instead of promoting more hatred or anger or violence, they are doing something incredibly brave, incredibly heroic, incredibly simple: they are coming together working for peace.

This week, this Wednesday and Thursday, there will be a Nineveh International Forum for Peace. More than 200 survivors, grassroots activists, NGOs, tribal leaders, religious leaders, community members, men, women, mayors, government officials, the UN, journalists, and every national and international organisation working in Nineveh will come together. They will look at the role and leadership of women working for peace. They will look at how youth are choosing not to join militias or fight but to help heal, overcome sectarianism and hatred, and build a future beyond war and violence. They will look at how we can deal with trauma healing, recovery and reconciliation, civilian protection, introduce peace education into schools, create local peace committees, build the Nineveh Peace Council…and in the midst of all the violence and war we are seeing, in Nineveh, in the world…they will work to help us find a path towards peace. Them. The people who have been most affected. They are the ones doing this.

And what I’m asking from friend, my family, my colleague, someone who knows me and has linked to me here, is this: please help us tell this story to the world. Please blog about it. Comment about it. If you know someone who is a journalist – if you’re married to them, friends with them, if you are one, if you know someone who knows someone – whether it’s for a local paper, a radio station, CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, CCTV, the Guardian, or any, any, any other, reach out to them, talk to them about this, help them know, realise, understand how incredibly important this is. If you wonder what can be done to stop terrorism, to stop war, to stop what we’ve seen happening in Belgium, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, France, Turkey – this is it. This is an important and major part of it. This is people – practically, concretely – building peace.

And their story needs to be told.

And all of us need to know, there is a reason to hope – not just because it matters to, not just because we want to, but as a result of our choices and actions.

I’m asking you, I need your help: please help us get this story told.


I Need Your Help: Asking You To Support Emerging Peace Leaders

Support Emerging Peace Leaders:
What you can do to make a difference in 4 people’s lives, and in the world 

Dearest friends, family and colleagues around the world –
I need to ask for your help to make a difference in 4 peoples lives and their countries

I am writing to ask you for help. As many of you know I have recently taken up the role of Co-Leader of Hacettepe University Peace & Conflict Studies Global Peace Institute. There we are creating what is an exceptional MA (masters) programme to truly and deeply train, inspire, educate and empower people from all over the world with the skills, knowledge, capabilities and confidence they need to make a difference – in their communities, their countries and globally. We have an incredible student body – people coming from many different backgrounds, including from deeply war affected countries, and united by their common commitment and dedication. 

We are now trying to make it possible for four remarkable individuals: Sarwat Sharif and Aftab Ahmad from Pakistan, Shakila Enayatzade from Afghanistan, and Georgiana Mariana Rus from Romania to join us for the coming academic year beginning now in January. These four individuals are receiving ‘Future Leaders Scholarships’ from the University, but we still need to raise funds to support their living, accommodation and travel.

[To support directly click here:

Sarwat, Aftab and Shakila are coming from countries deeply affected and wracked by war and violence. Billions of dollars have been spent in equipping and training people for war in Afghanistan and Pakistan. We are…I am…asking for your help to raise a few thousands Euros to support Sarwat, Aftab, Shakila and Georgiana to spend one year getting one of the best graduate degrees in the world in peacebuilding, so they can make a real and meaningful difference in their communities and countries, in the world.

Fantastic 4 Thank you

You might be able to donate 5 Euros / dollars / pounds. You might be able to cover the entire costs for one or all four of them. You might know someone who can help, or be able to hold a bake sale, car wash, raise funds at your school or company to help them. For all four to cover all costs for their degrees for 1 year we need about 24.000 Euros in total. The rest we are providing from the university.

I need to raise these funds in 1 week for them to be able to come take part in time. I’d like to ask you to share this with anyone you know who may be able to help, and to get back to me directly at if you can.

I believe in Sarwat, Aftab, Shakila and Georgiana, and I believe we can make a difference. It’s time to say: we’re tired of the continual war and violence and use of violence fuelled by so many from heads of state to outraged groups. I want to believe in something better. I want to do something better. I want to help support and enable those who will make a difference in their countries and the world to be trained in peacebuilding.

Please – help us by donating directly even if just a few dollars / euros / pounds / yen or any currency, or as much as you’re able, and by forwarding this as broadly as you can through your networks, to friends, family, colleagues and others. This will make a difference, but we need you to help make it happen.

I’m asking you to help us change the world, and to change the lives of these four people by making this possible for them.

Thank you…for helping to make this possible, and for helping us to do something concrete and real to make a difference in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and in the world.

Emerging Peace Leaders: A Permanent Campaign You Can Help Succeed!

At the same time, this campaign is about much more than just raising support for Sarwat Sharif and Aftab Ahmad from Pakistan, Shakila Enayatzade from Afghanistan, and Georgiana Mariana Rus from Romania – though that alone would be an entirely worthy and important cause. We’ve decided to make this a permanent scholarship to support emerging peace leaders from around the world to take part in the Hacettepe University Peace & Conflict Studies international MA – quickly becoming one of the best in the world for people truly dedicated to learning how to DO peacebuilding in practice – in their communities, their countries and internationally. 

The scholarship will be dedicated to supporting extraordinary people: people of courage, people of dedication, people of inspiration, passion and commitment – people working to make a change in their communities, in their countries – often in deeply challenging and difficult circumstances. It will go to women working in their communities to overcome and prevent violent against women. It will go to youth and elders in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Libya and elsewhere working to inspire, mobilise and encourage people to unite to end the violence in their countries, to reach out across divisions, to rise for peace and stop the wars affecting their people. It will go to people in Israel-Palestine, Cyprus, the Congo and elsewhere bringing people together from ‘across’ conflict parties to go through their MAs together and build the trust, confidence, mutual understanding and real skill and commitment they need to support effective peacebuilding. It will go to people in Mexico, South Africa, Nigeria, the United States and other countries deeply affected by armed violence and help them study concretely proven and effective methods for reducing and preventing armed violence.

It will go…to people who are rising to do what is necessary and make a difference in this world. To people…being the change we need to see. And we’re asking you to be part of this.

Whether you can help by donating 5 $ or Euros or 5000 or 50.000, or by sharing this further through your networks, or by joining and reposting/sharing updates and information – or organising a car wash, bake sale, school fundraising, dinner with friends who come together to support…whatever you can do…you can do something. You can help, and make an opportunity that will change people’s lives and support peacebuilding in their countries possible. And for that…we thank you. I thank you.

In peace, in dedication,
Kai Frithjof Brand-Jacobsen

Co-Leader, Hacettepe International MA in Peace and Conflict Studies and Head of Peace Operations & Integral Development; and Director, Department of Peace Operations

To Join the Support Emerging Peace Leaders Facebook Community go to: