Arlington (Mar. 27, 2019) – Conflict is a fundamental part of social change, yet social and political movement and organizations are plagued with their own conflicts, both internal and external. These conflicts are often managed in negative and socially regressive ways that undermine their aims and values. Mediators Beyond Borders International(MBBI) in partnership with the Conflict Transformation Fund(CTF) offers an alternative.
A new partnership between Mediators Beyond Borders International(MBBI)and the Conflict Transformation Fund(CTF) aims to enhance the capacity of social and political organizations to engage with conflict creatively and constructively through a new initiative, Democracy, Politics, and Conflict Engagement (DPACE).
As Drs. Wendy Wood and Ken Cloke, co-leaders of this initiative explain “As conflict resolution professionals, we are asked to help find solutions to conflicts within and between political groups — conflicts that can threaten the people and systems our country needs in order to survive and thrive. We believe that by building the skills and capacities of social movements and political organizations and helping them respond to conflict in ways that are creative and constructive, it will be possible for us to engage our differences without harming each other or the planet. Together, we can create a better understanding of what it means, both individually and collectively, to participate in democracy, and support the creation of a more just and civil society.”
MBBI is an impact organization founded on the principle of people-centered peacebuilding. This new partnership will enable MBBI’s team of expert mediators, facilitators, and trainers to offer alternative approaches to political conflicts and less destructive ways of bringing about social change.
“We are honored to partner with the Conflict Transformation Fund to enhance our ability to build a ‘peace able’ world by increasing conflict literacy and promoting constructive engagement within all sectors of society,” said Prabha Sankaranarayan, President and CEO of MBBI. “Our goal is to enhance our conflict competency in order to explore our differences without losing touch with our common humanity; to turn our political passions in the direction of social and political problem solving.”
CTF is a short-term philanthropic initiative with a long-term vision. It believes that conflict literacy begins with seeing conflict as an opportunity for growth and positive change. It also involves learning, practicing, and integrating a range of concepts, skills, and tools that enable us to understand and work skillfully with conflict. By strengthening conflict literacy in progressive movements and organizations through funding, research, and philanthropic organizing, CTF plans on supporting a shift to a more just, equitable, and connected society.
“Generating lasting change requires movements that are resilient enough to navigate the inevitable conflicts that arise when diverse people and perspectives come together to take on the daunting work of ushering in a better future.” Said Laura Loescher, Director of CTF. “Building on MBBI’s success globally, DPACE is engaging the wisdom of highly experienced conflict professionals to create urgently needed resources and tools for transforming conflicts within and between social movement organizations in the United States. We are honored to be supporting this work!”
MBBI: Dr. Wendy Wood, 703-528-6552, firstname.lastname@example.org
CTF: Laura Loescher, 415-519-1407, email@example.com