From 2018 until May 2023, we received more than 609 applications for educational programs on nonviolence and 353 participated, with 19 countries represented. This shows the great interest that exists around this topic. Following the 2019 program, 67% of participants reported actively engaging in civil resistance campaigns and 74% reported applying the knowledge they gained to train others in nonviolent action and civil resistance. Following the 2021 program, 83% of participants reported a strong increase in their strategic planning skills and 84% reported an increase in their use of communication methods, nonviolent discipline, and strategic planning taught in the program one year later.
The multiplier effect of these programs can also be seen in the following:
- From 2019 through 2020, a variety of important projects were carried out by our alumni in their communities and across the region through the small project implementation grant fund of the Rotary Club.
- In Haiti, nonviolent activists carried out an in-person training in Creole for 39 activists, politicians, and community leaders.
- In Nicaragua, a virtual and in-person training series was held on nonviolent action and nonviolent communication which promoted building networks between activist organizations. Besides, a workshop with local artists on art-ivism, connecting creative arts and nonviolent resistance.
- In Ecuador, a peace journalism observatory was implemented along with training and the production of a communication campaign, including videos and podcasts. Besides, a series of trainings/ gatherings on art, creative writing, music, etc. to make visible gender-based violence and anti-LGBTQ stigma and empower youth with tools to overcome it and reclaim identities. Also, an awareness-raising campaign and virtual training workshop on alternatives to violence, exchange of toy guns for soccer balls during ‘festival of peace’.
- In Bolivia, a nonviolent campaign for reproductive rights and against gender-based violence was held in Gran Chaco province with 256 total beneficiaries (157 research participants, 81 training participants, and 18 participants in the presentation of the results).
- In Texas-Mexico border, a community conversation with leading scholar-activist Dr. Arturo Escobar in “intentional dialogue” with leading activists from across a range of intersecting areas in San Antonio and U.S.-Mexico border area doing work in indigenous sovereignty movements, anti-extraction efforts, prison abolition and Black liberation, and community mutual aid programs. Also, a panel at local university and an online interview that was broadly disseminated.
- In Venezuela, a series of workshops and dialogues to invite community participation and negotiate the use of a former abandoned lot filled with trash and a parking lot in order to create a community center and multi-use space in a stigmatized area.
- In Colombia, an initiative to strengthen the musical and nonviolent discipline capacity of the Great Chirimera Band activists in Popayán, Cauca.
- Posters about national nonviolent actions presented by program participants in 2018, 2019 and 2020.
- Radio programs supported by Radio “Activa” PUCE and Radio FLACSO about the participants’ experiences as nonviolent activists. These programs were uploaded to YouTube and to the Facebook accounts of PUCE and FLACSO.
- During the 2020 face-to-face course in Quito, we made a documentary with narratives of the participants own experiences of nonviolent action. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=147Z4QVawMA&t=119s). This documentary was funded by the Rotary Club.
- Ted Talk, “People behind the campaigns: sharing life stories” took place in 2018 at FLACSO, where two renowned Ecuadorian activists, Mario Melo and Esperanza Martínez, and a younger activist, Lizbeth Zhingri, who was participating in the institute, shared their personal histories of engagement in civil resistance. At the end of the presentations, the public had the opportunity to ask questions. The Latin American news agency Pressenza, which specializes in news about nonviolence, covered the event.
- Dr Benigno Alarcón Deza, from the Andrés Bello Catholic University in Venezuela, asked us if we could share the academic resources from the educational programs that include trainings, academic texts, and videos that we produced for our online courses. In 2022, he received 600 applications and one third has finished the courses. The obstacles participants had, were the lack of electricity and the bad internet connection in this country.
- Blog publications and podcasts are growing in popularity every day. We have published 48 blogs and 18 podcast until May 2023.
- Academic publications about our Institute
- Pugh, J. D. (2019). A Catalyst for Action: Training and Education as Networking Platforms for Peace Projects, Journal of Peacebuilding and Development, Vol 15, N°1. https://doi.org/10.1177/1542316619875122
- Pugh, J.D. (2018). Weaving Transnational Activist Networks: Balancing International and Bottom-up Capacity-building Strategies for Nonviolent Action in Latin America, Middle Atlantic Review of Latin American Studies, (2)1, pp.130-141. DOI: http://doi.org/10.23870/marlas.179