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A Practical Guide to Youth Capacity Building for Countering Hate and Extremism

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Young people are playing a pivotal role in preserving peace, security and human rights in their communities around the world. They are passionate, committed and in-tune with local grievances and conflict dynamics, showing that when given the necessary support, young people are invaluable partners in preventing hate, polarisation and extremism. Multi-stakeholder P/CVE strategies should incorporate young people and make it possible for them to not only support peacebuilding initiatives, but also lead their own.

Through Young Cities, SCN enhances the role of young people in P/CVE in three pivotal ways: 1) by building their capacity as peacebuilders and leaders; 2) by promoting meaningful youth engagement with and youth-focused policies from municipal officials; and 3) by facilitating opportunities for cooperation between young people and their local government. Since 2018, Young Cities has mobilised youth-led efforts to build community cohesion and fosters mutual trust and understanding between youth and city stakeholders in in a geographically diverse set of countries, including Belgium, Jordan, Lebanon, Kenya, Senegal, Australia, North Macedonia and Pakistan.

This report draws from that experience to present four models for building young people’s capacity as P/CVE actors, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches and recommendations for enhancing youth engagement in P/CVE.