How can lasting peace be developed on a community level? Rotary International and the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) came together to answer this question through the Positive Peace Activator Program.

The Positive Peace Activator is a training program for Rotary members well-versed in peacebuilding to further their knowledge and capacity. Activators complete at least three educational actions per year, to further engage their community and train others in Positive Peace. This encourages them to put their training into action, through further engagement with local Rotary clubs.
From its conception in 2020, the Activator program has trained five cohorts in Latin America, North America, Europe, South-East Asia, and now East Africa. These 150 Activators have led their own projects such as hosting lectures and workshops, as well as acting as peace mentors to their regional Rotary clubs.
East Africa was carefully chosen for the next region of Activators due to the existing commitment to peace displayed through the Makerere Peace Centre, as well as the need for peacebuilding given the recent conflict in the area, explains Rebecca Crall, Area of Focus Manager – Peacebuilding and Conflict Prevention, Rotary International.

East Africa Cohort

From 2- 4 September 2022, 40 peacebuilding professionals gathered at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Led by professionals from IEP and Rotary International, the group engaged in three days of activities and discussions on the professional implementation of Positive Peace.

Designed as a training-of-trainers program, Activators were first led through the history of peace theory and current issues as identified by IEP’s research for the Global Peace Index. This was followed by how these theories and ideas can be translated into action in their own communities, as well as what they can do to lead others interested in engaging in peace.
Rotary International President Jennifer Jones not only attended the launch, but immersed herself in the Positive Peace Pillar mapping exercise alongside the participants. This invigorated the room and further inspired Activators to dedicate their time and skills to peacebuilding.
“The competitive selection process for Activators ensures that we have an incredible group of people in the room, which always means our workshops are engaging and informative. Sharing skills and ideas and seeing the motivation among our participants to bring the concepts of Positive Peace into the world is truly inspiring.”- Rebecca Crall, a representative of Rotary International and one of the key organisers behind the program.

One of these extraordinary attendees was Tegla Lourope, who spoke to Activators about her broad span of work as an Olympic athlete, peacebuilder and global activist. As a Kenyan woman, her reputation preceded her in this event, with participants eager to hear from her about her successes in the field and her inspirational life story.
Inspired to further their own peace journeys, Activators split into regional groups to design a Positive Peace Project that meets a need in their country. Given one day to design and plan this, each group then pitched their ideas to a panel of experts and were given feedback on how to best promote these to Rotary clubs.
For the two years following the completion of this training, Activators work with Rotary and Rotary stakeholders in their communities to identify and address community needs, as well as educate others on Positive Peace. It is in this role that they have the opportunity to action the projects conceptualised in the workshop, in further collaboration with community members and Rotary leaders.
Following the success of this cohort, plans have begun for West and North African Positive Peace Activators Cohorts in the coming months.
Learn more about the program at Positive Peace Activators.
Rotary-IEP Partnership
Launched in 2017, the Rotary-IEP partnership was designed to enhance Rotary’s peace and conflict resolution efforts with data-driven methodologies and tools. To date, the partnership has seen thousands of Ambassadors, Activators and online Academy students learn to apply new peacebuilding methods to their communities, while addressing underlying causes of conflict.


Alessa Dever is a Partnership Associate with IEP

Alessa Dever

Partnerships Intern at IEP

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