We are the European Youth Team (EYT) Welcome to our first official page!
The EYT was set up in November 2019 by a group of young European peace activists who are part of PeaceJam networks across Europe.
These members were part of the ‘Core Team’ and put out a call for applications for new members to join and create the overall European Youth Team. What started as a small initiative grew to be one of the most active youth organizations across Europe, running projects and events based on the ethos of; “for young people, by young people."
The European Youth Team was given the task of thinking ahead to November 2020, where the first Pan-European conference was to be held in Belgium. The team spent many months planning the conference, thinking of speakers and workshops ideas and decided that the themes for the conference should be themes most relevant to young people; Environment, Health, Education, Migration and Equality.
Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference took its place online and once again it was up to the European Youth Team to work together to ensure that the online conference would be as impactful as if it was held in person.
The conference itself was a great success, with over 30 workshops and speakers from all five of the chosen themes alongside Nobel Peace Laureate Jody Williams, an open-mic night and an initiative called the Laureate of the Future Award. The programme lasted for 5 days, with many mentors ensuring that the conference provided an impactful, enjoyable and effective way of still working to promote peace during the pandemic. You can learn more about this conference via this link; https://peacejamforaninclusiveeurope.org/
The aim of the EYT was to promote PeaceJam values and global youth inclusion within the current issues and topics in which youth can make a big impact. Strengthening the youth, providing support through different projects and activities, as well as creating a safe space for the young people to share their ideas are the guiding ideas of the EYT!
After the PeaceJam conference in November 2020, we wanted to continue bringing positive change and spread our word, so we brought youth from all over Europe into one place called the “European Youth Team”.
Our members have different educational, cultural and national backgrounds, which makes it more colourful and gives us insight into different perspectives at the same time. Members also have different experience backgrounds with PeaceJam, some of them have been working with PeaceJam for a while, while others are totally new! We are open to new members, enthusiastic people willing for the action and promotion of the different ideas which can make and reach youth all over the world. We have strong connections with PeaceJam from many countries, from the UK to Greece, Uganda and even Mexico, which gives us a really global insight and connection of the youth. Topics that we bring are related to the environment, health, politics, migrations, law, different actions of peace, projects, online sessions and panels. You can learn more about the global organisation of PeaceJam here; https://www.peacejam.org/
The EYT wants to become a place, group and platform that allows the coming together of like-minded young people from all over Europe to make the changes that they believe need to be made. Due to the EYT stemming from PeaceJam, it aligns itself with the PeaceJam Ethos;
"To create young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities, and the world through the inspiration of Nobel Peace Laureates who pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody.”
All of these different aspects come together to create the EYT and allow us to form a connected group that can set up different programs and events for people all over Europe.
The European Youth Team is currently organised by three individuals that make up the 'Core Team'. We meet every Friday afternoon and discuss ideas for events and projects and we relay these back to our wider team, that meet monthly on the last Sunday of each month.
The Core Team
Luke is an English, Drama and Peace Education teacher from the UK. Luke first got involved with PeaceJam in June 2014 when he was invited to mentor at a PeaceJam Conference in Monaco where the Nobel Laureate with Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Following the conference, Luke returned to his University in Winchester and worked alongside the PeaceJam UK team to establish the first 'PeaceJam Winchester'. PeaceJam Winchester has run several very successful annual conferences with students and Nobel Peace Laureates.
Following the success of PeaceJam Winchester, Luke was able to help set up PeaceJams across Europe from Greece to Belgium which then launched the 'PeaceJam Europe' initiative.
Luke also works very closely with organisations such as Rotary International and Rotaract, Great Lakes Peace Centre and Uniting for Peace.
Martina is a dedicated advocate for positive global change, holding a recent Master's degree in Peace and Development Work and actively engaged with on-the-ground development projects in various countries including the UK, Sweden, South Africa and Zambia.Her passion for International Development and Peacebuilding is underpinned by this unique blend of academic knowledge and hands-on experience.
Martina is deeply passionate about creating spaces that foster collaboration and dialogue, where diverse voices can come together to address complex challenges and drive meaningful change. This passion has been cultivated through experiences in Peace Education projects and interactions with diverse communities in South Africa. Martina believes that we can bridge divides and find innovative solutions through open dialogue and collaborative efforts. Additionally, her knack for curating strategic content further amplifies this passion. Having successfully crafted content for various organisations, Martina understands the power of tailored messaging to engage audiences and drive impactful outcomes. The prospect of utilizing these skills to curate content that sparks conversations connects stakeholders and advances the goals of different organizations greatly motivates her.
Haruna Salim Mbusa
Salim, was born and raised in Kasese, Western Uganda, andstudied Laws (LLB) from the Uganda Pentecostal University. However, for the past 5 years, he has been hugely invested into peace building and conflict prevention / resolution work, which he has for most of that time done alongside his studies.
Currently, he is volunteering at a non-profit, Act for Transformation in Germany under a program called Weltwärts. The non-profit works in areas of peace education, global learning, supporting refugees and migrants. Here, he primarily coordinates the Global Peace Room program which brings together young people from Germany, Uganda, South Sudan and Georgia for virtual discussions about peace, conflict transformation, global learning and SDGs. It also empowers the participants to design small scale projects / activities that address some of their local community challenges.
Salim helped in launching PeaceJam in Uganda and has supported its work as a Youth Team Leader. He has also been involved in numerous PeaceJam activities and campaigns both physical and virtual, and in 2022, he won the PeaceJam (International) “Design for Peace” Contest.
He has previously volunteered with Great Lakes Peace Center and Kabarole Research & Resource Centre (KRC Uganda), which are non-profits in Uganda working to build peaceful, sustainable and economically strong communities as they also promote the UN SDGs.
Salim is very passionate about community service and likes working with youth, as he believes that they have so much potential to influence change in their social systems. He is a member of Rotaract, and currently serves as the International Service Director of the Rotaract Club of Kabarole, Uganda.
He categorically works to promote the concept of Positive Peace and in 2022, he completed training as a Rotary Positive Peace Activator. This made him part of a pool of about 250 Positive Peace Activators spread all-over the world, who have been trained under a strategic partnership between Rotary International and the Institute for Economics & Peace (IEP).
PeaceJam Europe Board
The EYT have also pushed for youth representation at a Board level and were supported by PeaceJam HQ in nominating and successfully electing two EYT members to Board positions within PeaceJam Europe.
These are EYT members, Meric Gonul and Seyran Khalili, their positions on the Board are incredibly valuable for the EYT as they are able to update Board members on the activities of the EYT and advocate for more support from PeaceJam.
You are always welcome to contact us and share your ideas, comments or news with us by our email;