We support frontline leaders to prevent and respond quickly to mass atrocities
Local community members are best positioned to identify solutions to mitigate risks of mass atrocities. We team up with practitioners, academics, activists, and tech gurus to provide tools, trainings, and other resources to meet their needs.
We facilitate collaboration through information-sharing, joint projects, and research. Our coordination networks exist at all levels: grassroots, international, and between local and international communities.
Community-designed and -led initiatives are critical to preventing mass violence. We invest in small projects through grants that average $5,000. To date, we have supported projects in 40 countries.
GLOBAL IMPACT | LOCAL FOCUS
In just six years we have already seen the impact of our investments in women, youth, and other community leaders in 40 countries. Our projects are all locally-led and address specific needs, such as empowering women to build peace, bridging community divides, providing alternatives to young people who could be recruited by violent extremists, and countering hate speech online and offline. Our work spans the globe, and we provide clusters of resources in three countries to deepen our impact: Myanmar, Nigeria, and the United States.
“Dangerous Speech is any form of expression (speech, text, or images) that can increase the risk that its audience will condone or participate in violence against members of another group.”
-Dangerous Speech Project
Dangerous Speech serves as a red flag to local and international communities that mass violence against men, women, and children may be on the horizon. While we are broadly focused on preventing mass atrocities and combating hate, Dangerous Speech is a theme that cuts across many of our efforts.
Our Civil Society Exchange Program brings together activists who can learn from each other’s shared experiences, build relationships, and share knowledge across the field and around the world.
Dangerous Speech Global Fund
This fund provides critical micro-grants, expertise, and connections to organizations that work to understand, monitor, and counter Dangerous Speech in communities around the world.
COUNTRIES OF FOCUS
The Rohingya people of Myanmar are the largest group of stateless people in the world and have been systematically persecuted by the Burmese government, military, and Buddhist extremists for decades. In recent years, the crimes committed against the Rohingya have risen to alarming levels. The United Nations has said that this is a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing” and many experts have called it a genocide. There is concern about ongoing mass atrocities against the Rohingya, as well as potential mass atrocity against other marginalized groups.
Local organizations and community members in Myanmar are best-placed to respond to and prevent further violence against the Rohingya and other marginalized groups; yet they are often overlooked by the international community. We provide direct support to these leaders and serve as a bridge builder between international and local organizations as needed to amplify community voices.
Steady increases in violent extremism and Dangerous Speech divide communities along sectarian lines in northern Nigeria and the Middle Belt regions, raising concerns of a growing risk of mass atrocities. With a complex political climate, both local and international experts anticipate that rising levels of Dangerous Speech and increases in tensions throughout the country may catalyze violence that could quickly escalate.
Despite this ethnic and religious strife, Nigeria is home to vibrant and strong civil society working to address these challenges. Since 2014, we have supported locally-led initiatives, including micro-grants to address Dangerous Speech and other risk factors, trainings, workshops, civil society exchanges, and more. Our work is led by two local staff on the ground in our focus regions of the Middle Belt and the North West.
Dangerous Speech has risen and spread at alarming rates in the United States since the 2016 election, targeting marginalized racial, ethnic and religious groups, immigrants, undocumented persons, refugees, LGBTQIA+, and/or persons with disabilities. After conducting an in-depth scoping of 400+ organizations working to combat hate and division across the country, we saw a clear need for more tools and resources to strengthen resiliency at the community level.
Drawing from our international efforts and learnings, we are bringing conflict prevention tools and resources to frontline activists working to reduce hatred and division fueling the risks of identity-based violence in the U.S. We support community-driven projects, provide trainings, micro-grants, and coordination for activists and organizations in our 10 states of focus* as they identify, test, and implement locally-led solutions.
* 10 States of Focus: Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee, Texas