The Peace Work Institute (PWI) is a best practice initiative piloted during the Roots for Reconciliation phase two, and highly evaluated by its participants and key stakeholders.

The aim of the Peace Work Institute it to empower youth opinion leaders in acting for change in their sending organisations and respective communities as multipliers of peace culture and movement. It assumes a two-year training and practice scheme including the following key activities:

  • Peace Work Institute Training Session One – April 3rd - 9th 2017, Tbilisi, Georgia (Read about)
  • Peace Work Institute Training Session Two – November 12th - 18th 2017, Berlin, Germany (Read about)
  • Tandem Project by Peace Work Institute Graduates – (Art4Peace - August 2018, Georgia / P.E.A.C.E. - September 2018, Hungary)
  • Peace Work Institute Alumni Reunion – Spring 2019

The application forms were placed on YMCA Europe and Council of Europe online platforms and the criteria of selection were entirely merit-based, regardless of nationality, race, religion and gender. Endorsement and pledged mentoring support from sending partners were a requirement. By Fall 2016 the Planning Team carried out the final selection according to demonstrated capacity, interest, motivation and commitment.


November 25 – 27, 2016, YMCA Europe held a working meeting between the Peace Work Institute Planning Team and the representatives of confirmed sending partners to:

  • Mutually clarify the stakeholder expectations from and commitments to the entire Peace Work Institute scheme;
  • Precise and fix the mentoring support system for each selected participant;
  • Identify interest in and ideas for the grassroots-level tandem projects.
  • More about the event here.

The Planning Team (PT), composed of appropriate RfR project staff and selected graduated of the previous PWI series, was established, with gender balance as a key criterion. The PT is and will carry on the responsibility both for the residential sessions’ logistical arrangements as well as for their content development and delivery. Meanwhile RfR project staff will remain completely responsible for the events due administration, evaluation and official reporting.

As an output of the PWI previous series the YMCA Europe has developed a handbook, including the curriculum, educational and facilitation modules. This handbook will be the base for elaborating the content of the next phase of the PWI. However new modules and tools are also assumed to be included into the programme. As during the first PWI series, through the whole run of the second one Do No Harm approach will be used as the main educational methodology and module.

Towards the end of the training phase of the PWI scheme the PT will develop the Tandem Grant Tool criteria and procedures, based on which the successful PWI graduates will receive small individual grants for leveraging them into cross-border or regional initiatives aimed at bringing together young people coming from different conflict sides. This TGT package will be made available during the year 3, with maximum grant size at EUR 2’000 per PWI graduate. The grantees will be required to cluster those funds into joint projects as sparring partners. These TGF sub-projects are estimated to totally enroll at least 100 participants as direct beneficiaries, with minimum 4 possible cross-border or regional activity scenarios ranging from youth reunions, exchange and study visits, to joint publications, advocacy initiatives and digital media.

PWI alumni Reunion is schedule to take place during project year 4 as the concluding activity within the scheme, where the best practices are shared, results evaluated and future plans conceptualised. It is also planned that this event will bridge the PWI with the overall RfR RPP process, serving as focus group forum. The PWI Reunion will be held in form of a week-long residential event for 40 participants, bringing together both generations of RfR PWI alumni.

Peace Work Institute Reunion Budapest

Peace Work Institute Reunion
Budapest, Hungary - 2015

PWI Reunion Toledo

Peace Work Institute Reunion
Toledo, Spain - 2019