We do not need more walls or lies between people. We need meeting points and more cooperation.
Written by director Alfredo Zamudio. (The text is from the annual report’s foreword).
We have met thousands of people in 2018 – and many of them are children and young people. On average, we have arranged one dialogue activity every other day.
We live in a world subject to large amount of man-made problems: climate change, hate speech, radicalization, national and international conflicts, isolationism and refugees crisis. To prevent and mitigate these crisis, collaboration is vital and urgently needed, and the best strategy for a peaceful present and future.
To make cooperation possible, we need trust, this scarce social capital that takes time to find and maintain. Unfortunately, we see that in troubled times like now, trust is under attack by many.
Dialogue is a method for peaceful conflict transformation, that can help to build trust and to build bridges for cooperation, as well as strengthen the opportunities to prevent and resolve conflicts and difficult situations. But despite its simplicity – dialogue is one of the most difficult things for humanity to achieve.
Nevertheless, the skills needed to arrange good and structured dialogue can be learned by any. The Nansen Center for Peace and Dialogue have in 2018 prioritized trainings and reached many more people than in years before. Several of the requests for collaboration came from partners dealing with complex situations, both in Norway and abroad. We notice that there is an increase in training requests and we have tried to accommodate as many as we could respond to.
On average in 2018, we had a dialogue activity every second day, meeting thousands of people in Norway and abroad. Many of those we meet in our work are children and young people, who are willing to learn how to use dialogue for peaceful conflict transformation and peace work.
The number of requests for collaboration and trainings is an indication of the will to learn new tools to handle conflicts in a peaceful manner. We are realistic about the challenges of our time, at the same time that we are aware of the many who are willing to do their outmost to work for peace.
We welcome your comments and questions. Following this link and you will find our annual report for 2018 (written in Norwegian): Nansen Fredssenter årsmelding 2018 pdf
Warm regards, Alfredo Zamudio
Published: August 16th 2019