‘Hiwar’ means ‘dialogue’ in Arabic, and is the name of the new British Council EU-funded project in Iraq to develop a debate programme for young people.
HIWAR will support young people to discuss the role of religion and its relationship to development, as well as promote dialogue with policy and decision makers working in peacebuilding.
Young people aged 15 to 25 years old will be invited to exchange their views and opinions, avoiding theological and doctrinal issues, about the role faith and religion can play as positive contributions to peacebuilding and in support of the country’s development.
Rather than tackle issues of division through conflict and violence, by participating, young people in Iraq can instead develop their critical thinking, communication, presentation, and debating skills.
Although led by the youth themselves, HIWAR will be implemented with local partners and will invite local leaders to get involved.
HIWAR will focus its efforts in four areas to:
- examine religion’s relationship to stability using a ‘bottom up’ conflict analysis
- establish a country-wide debating programme called ‘Iraqi Voices’
- promote the constructive role of religion to stability
- promote a dialogue on stability with policy and decision makers.
HIWAR is worth €4.85 million and will run until 2020. For more information please contact: Kelly Ferguson