FRIENDS/PARTNERS IN PEACE
With every news channel reporting the same sad news of violence, crime, wars and disaster, we’ve come close to believe the popular phrase ‘’faith in humanity lost’’. Today, where there is unprecedented literacy, our systems still fail to foster peace and kindness, but only mental restlessness and discontent instead. While all this remains true, we often overlook the works of some astounding organisations that burn the candles at both ends to bring world peace. There are hundreds of organisations for world peace around the globe, each one of them working with a different approach and level to make this a better world. Let us have a look at 20 such World Organisations that strive to establish World Peace.
Control Arms Campaign:
Control Arms Campaign, active since 2003, is jointly run by a coalition of over a hundred organizations that work for the lack of controls on arms-trade as it effectively aggravates human rights violation, poverty and dissension. Now, you might think that a lot of laws do exist that binds arm-trade but perhaps none of them were fully international before the Arms Trade Treaty. Control Arms Campaign crusaded for an Arms Trade Treaty in more than hundred countries and it is a product of their massive effort that an international Arms Trade Treaty was agreed upon in the United Nations in 2013.
Code Pink is a women led organisation that condemns and works to end wars and militarism in United States. It is widely popular for its stupendous effort to prevent the US war on Iraq. They continue to work against the US war in Afghanistan and some other repressive regimes. Although it is a women led group, it widely welcomes male members. They protest by directly challenging the government by civil resistance, street theatre, creative visuals and other non-violent activities.
Flame of Peace:
It is a non-profit organisation that promotes world peace. With its headquarters in Austria, the organisation encourages people to promote peace by rewarding peace activists, diplomats, politicians and any individual with outstanding effort in the area.
The Asia Foundation:
A non-profit organisation, The Asia Foundation functions to improve the prospects of peace in a conflicted zone. It helps in facilitating dialogues, encouraging political reforms, proving rapid response in impending crises. It was founded in 1954 and also works with private and public partners for research purposes. It has helped develop a powerful set of research tools, facilitated people by helping reductions in local taxes etc.
Pathways to Peace:
An international peacebuilding, educational and consulting organisation dedicated to making peace a reality, Pathways to Peace is incorporated as an official messenger of the United Nations. It works for United Nations centre of human settlements, centre for human rights, UNICEF, UNESCO and other such agencies. It works locally and globally to collaborate with other organisations that help spreading the culture of peace.
Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict:
Formed in 2003, this member led network of civil society organisations that work for peacebuilding across the world. The committee’s main purposes are raising awareness and enhancing methodologies for formal and informal education that fosters a peaceful handling of conflict. It has launched an online platform, called The Peace Portal, for learning and collaborating in the peacebuilding field.
Global Peace Foundation:
Global Peace Foundation is a non-profit organisation whose stated mission is to promote “an innovative, values-based approach to peacebuilding, guided by the vision of One Family under God.” With its headquarters in Maryland, USA, it partners with the government to develop and execute programs that include character in education system and to abolish human trafficking. They organise a cultural peace festival and service projects in different countries around the world.
Food not Bombs:
Now this peacekeeping society works in an entirely different and creative approach to oppose violence. Their ideology says that governments are skewed to allow hunger to persists while insane amounts of money goes in wars. So, as a way of protesting against this, they serve free vegan food to hungry people. This food is the surplus food at grocery store that otherwise goes waste. The group is active through America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and Australia. It has no formal leaders and strives to include everyone in its decision making process.
Based in London, this organisation works to prevent and end violence around the world by directly working with people affected by violence. They also help in shaping international policies that affect peacebuilding. Founded in 1986, this foundation is active in over 20 countries.
The Elders are an independent group of world leaders working together for global peace and human rights. Founded by Nelson Mandela, the group is shared by honorary people like Desmond Tutu, Kofi Anan, Ela Bhatt and other influential personalities. They believe that it is important to listen to everyone, no matter how unpalatable this may be. They also stress the importance of every individual and how they are capable of making a difference.
It is another non-violent peacekeeping group with the goal to protect civilians and reduce violence in areas affected by war. It has been endorsed by 9 Nobel Peace Prize Laureates including Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu. With the headquarters in Brussels and an office in Minneapolis, Nonviolent Peaceforce’s teams are presently deployed in the Philippines, in South Sudan, Myanmar and the Middle East. They work by meeting the key players, officials and local police and civil society leaders and living within conflict zones alongside local people.
World Peace Prayer Society:
With the motto of ‘May peace prevail on Earth’, this society has a Sanctuary that serves as home to annual events, including the World Peace Festival and Planet Peace Day for children etc. This is a Japan based organisation with supporters from 191 countries across the word. They encourage creative ways to carry the message of peace to public view.
International Crisis Group:
The International Crisis Group is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organisation committed to preventing and resolving deadly conflict. According to the seriousness of a situation, the group decides where to work next and reports to thousands of targeted recipients like governments, diplomats and other officials in key roles. Their aim is to maintain high level pressure on these recipients to work in favour of the conflicted areas and bring peace to them.
Since its founding in Tokyo, the organisation has launched 25 international voyages of passenger ships. They are a floating university of sorts that provides humanitarian aids at their various stops and hold conferences related to global peacekeeping. It is granted a Special Consultative Status by the United Nations and hence submits repots and proposals to them regularly.
Nansen International Office for Refugees:
The committee was internationally in charge of refugees from war between 1930 and 1939. It is a pronounced group that has contributed abundantly for world peace. They are noted for developing a Nansen Passport with the help of which, refugees can travel between countries without an actual passport. The office was closed in 1939 but it is continued by a new office of High Commissioner for Refugees in London.
United Nations Organisation:
Needless to say, UNO is one of the most active and widespread organisation for peace keeping in today’s world scenario. It not only works for peace building but for conflict prevention and peace enforcement. Its global partnership includes Member States, the UN Secretariat, host countries, regional organizations and UN partners. They have built up an impressive record of peacekeeping achievements for over more than 60 years of their existence, including winning the Nobel Peace Prize.
United Religions Initiative:
With a membership of more than 1 million people, United Religions Initiative envisions a world at peace, sustained by interconnected communities committed to build respect for diversity, nonviolent resolution of conflict and social and environmental justice. They work to bridge religious and cultural differences to bring peace in the world. URI is composed of more than 85 countries and people from different faiths and spiritual expressions.
Mayors for Peace:
An international organisation dedicated to the promotion of peace, it was an initiative of Hiroshima’s Mayor in 1982 in response of the 140,000 deaths due to the atomic bombing of city. They work for the commencement towards the elimination of nuclear weapons by the year 2020. They have over 6800 members from 161 countries around the world.
Human Rights Watch:
Human Rights Watch is one of the most popular organisations around the world that works for peacebuilding. It conducts research and advocacy on human rights. Earlier known by the name Helsinki Watch, it was founded as a private American NGO in 1978. They publicly name and shame governments, people or any institutions that abuse human rights. Each year, Human Rights Watch presents the Human Rights Defenders Award to people around the world for demonstrating leadership and courage in defending human rights.
International Peace Bureau:
The International Peace Bureau works on building a world without war. They believe that reducing the funding for military sector can help save significant amount of money that can be used for fulfilling real human needs. The organisation has members from over 70 countries. It was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1910 for their tremendous work in this field.