While organisations like PeacePlayers and GFP continue to spread the message of peace within communities, Clark believes that a joined-up approach is essential to conflict resolution globally, both in Ukraine and beyond.
“It is good to see governments, private sector companies, and sports organisations all expressing similar condemnation and solidarity,” he said. “That type of global whole-of-society response is what should indeed be seen, but not only in response to Ukraine – also and equally in response to other violent conflicts and man-made humanitarian tragedies including Yemen, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Mali, Mozambique, the West Bank and Gaza.
“At the same time, condemning violence and expressing solidarity is insufficient unless connected with direct practical actions. Care must be taken not to jump onto news cycles without strategic action applied coherently and consistently across different contexts, where each organisation has proximity and strengths to offer. Peacebuilding work continues before, during, and after any violent conflict.
“The urgent peacebuilding work needed in relation to Ukraine is threefold:
(a) to highlight and direct concerned people to support non-violent efforts to bring about a cease-fire followed by a negotiated end to the hostilities;
(b) to ensure provision/access to humanitarian assistance inside Ukraine and for refugees who have fled to neighbouring countries; and
(c) serious diplomatic attention to manage the consequences of this war in a way that reduces the risk of further escalation."
Credit for images: Generations For Peace