Youth and Peacebuilding

Leveraging the Power of Emerging Peacemakers

Hundreds of millions of youth around the world live in fragile states and conflict zones. Youth caught in cycles of violence lack access to education, health and social services, and economic opportunities, all of which greatly impacts their development and ability to become active participants in their communities. Through these cycles, youth are often viewed as part of the problem. More and more evidence continues to prove, however, that youth are critical actors that can shape peacebuilding in powerful ways. The paradigm is changing. When youth are utilized as a grassroots force and are included in decision-making processes, constructive change happens. Youth-led movements and interventions impact communities on local and global levels. Here at the Institute for Peace and Justice, we strategically engage youth so we can learn with them to develop powerful new approaches to end cycles of violence.