4u2 - For you too - Roland Brunner


1st QUARTERLY REPORT. By Mareike Junge, April 2001

Since most of you have not yet heard about us, let me start our first quarterly report for the EN.CPS with a brief introduction of our organisation.

Peaceworkers UK was established in November 2000 with a small Management Committee based in London. In January, we obtained a start-up grant from the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Foundation for Tim Wallis to start working full-time on our two objectives:


To investigate the feasibility of a Civilian Peace Service for the UK


To promote the development of an international peace service, of which this could be the UK “branch”

The overall aims we are trying to pursue through our work are:


To increase the pool of people trained and available for international peace work


To increase the opportunities for civilian participation in international peace missions


To increase the availability of suitable training and placement programmes in the UK


To raise the public awareness of civilian peace work as an effective tool for peace-keeping, peace-building and peace-making

The first month quickly passed with the logistics of starting a new organisation. We set up a small office in the North of London, successfully applied for further funding which resulted in hiring Mareike Junge as a European Liaison and Research Officer, designed an initial website, produced our first leaflet and developed a strategic plan for 2001.

In February we started focusing on our research and outreach work, which is still in progress. We have been speaking to a number of individuals from other NGOs, academic institutions, religious institutions and government departments to get their feedback and comments and ask for support and advice on how to develop our idea into a feasible proposal for a UK Civilian Peace Service. We have so far obtained very positive feedback, which confirmed our impression that the time is right to get such a project off the ground. A very positive recent development within the government is the establishment of a joint £100 million budget for conflict prevention between the Ministry of Defence, the Foreign Office and the Department for International Development. And the Foreign Office has recently announced their interest in consulting NGOs on how this money should best be spent!

On the research side, our goal is to investigate the ‘demand and supply’ for civilian peace workers, nationally and internationally, in order to identify a gap that could be filled by a UK Civilian Peace Service. So far, we have been speaking with training organisations to find out the supply of relevant training courses in the field of peace work. In order to investigate the demand for more qualified individuals to carry out civilian peace work, we have been speaking with the OSCE, UN as well as domestic organisations involved in community mediation and conflict resolution, parades monitoring in Northern Ireland etc. This also included the collection of information on existing channels and procedures for the recruitment and assessment of civilian peace personnel.

Our research so far has shown that there is as yet no standardised system for the assessment of civilian peace personnel and that this might be a gap for Peaceworkers to fill. Our idea is to link the national and international aspect of peace work and provide a cycle of training, assessment and placement by which interested people are placed in local and national projects to acquire the skills and qualifications necessary for participating in international missions. We are currently looking at the British system of National Vocational Qualifications (NVQ) which defines modular standards of competency for specific tasks and assesses an individual’s performance against these standards in real-life or simulated work situations.

As you can see, there is still a lot to do for us before launching a UK Civilian Peace Service. The coming months will focus on intensifying our research and networking activities in order to identify the best model for such an organisation in the UK.

We see the development of a Civilian Peace Service in the UK very much as being part of an international peace service, drawing upon the expertise from a range of national and regional initiatives. In light of this, we are very interested in working towards close co-operation with other Civilian Peace Services in Europe to jointly support the development of a European structure for civilian peace work. We are actively involved in helping to steer the “Global Nonviolent Peace Force (GNPF)” in the direction towards becoming a vehicle for international co-operation, built on a foundation of national and regional peace services.   The GNPF initiative is currently being led by Peaceworkers USA and actively promoted by a number of people from all over the world. For this project to be successful it requires close co-operation between those organisations and individuals working in this field on a national or local level. We hope that we will have the chance to tell you more about this project at our meeting in Hölstein, obtain your feedback on the proposal and discuss possibilities for co-operation.




4your questions and contacts: rbr(at)4u2.ch