1BAOP has come from 20 years of work running PeaceJam with Nobel Peace Prize winners. Over this time, 1 million young people in 39 countries have participated with the Nobel Laureates in PeaceJam. PeaceJam offers a year-long program, year after year, helping young people see the potential in themselves to create change. As a result, young people become effective leaders.
The idea behind 1BAOP is that the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates want to create an amazing global citizens’ movement where everyone is empowered to become an agent of change. It is ambitious. We are working with 13 Nobel Laureates. The plan is audacious. We have wonderful founding partners, supporting the campaign infrastructure and tools- Google, Wells Fargo, others…
Our website, http://www.1billionacts.org/, shows people how to get started. We want to develop a huge network of nonprofit organizations. You can submit a form to become a member of the campaign and your work will be featured. The campaign has 10 focus areas. These are presented at the top of the website. The scope of the campaign is very ambitious. The Nobel Peace Prize winners spent 2 years working on this campaign. To build peace, we have to create the conditions for peace- social justice and meeting basic human needs. What will be causes of wars? … lack of access to water and food, hatred, violence, poverty, etc. We have identified 10 focus areas to target for change. We need change in the environment, education of girls, human rights, etc. We really do believe that everyone matters. This belief reflects the personal experience of each of the Nobel Peace Prize winners on the Board. We have taught this to young people for 20 years. Also, we have great technology behind us to support us. It is exciting that we have Google as a partner. Google has committed to 5 years’ worth of work. We want tools that allow global collaboration in a deep systemic way. We will create supportive technology that will be free for the entire world to use. A new app will come online this summer. We are having monthly Executive Committee meetings in Silicon Valley. We want to provide an umbrella that will hopefully bring all of us together in a way we have not done before.
Regarding my personal background: When I was 19 years old, I began working for US Congress, for my state’s Senator. I am from Detroit and was fortunate to be able to do an internship. I learned a lot but learned some sad things along the way. It is hard to create change at the top level. We have become paralyzed, polarized, and grid-locked. It is upsetting that there is so little that our governments are doing. 20 years ago, I moved to Colorado and started something new. I wanted to do grassroots work- rooted in each community and working with young people. Young people are still open to thinking that the impossible is possible. Now I have the wonderful opportunity to share what we have learned through the past 20 years with the world. In the nonprofit world, we are all stretched thin and just trying to keep our own ship afloat. Now, through PeaceJam’s 1BAOP, we are trying to make it easy to collaborate and become a member of this campaign and have everyone’s work count. We will be bringing in local governments, cities, universities, high schools, elementary schools, businesses, all organizations.
We are creating a campaign and infrastructure that allows people to come in as “tourists” and then they go forth as “guides”. We are unleashing the goodness and greatness in everyone in a way that enables us all to work together. We have incredible leadership from the 13 Nobel Peace Prize winners. We hope that everyone will join us either as an individual or group. Wherever you are, this campaign is for you. Archbishop Desmond Tutu has nominated the campaign for the Nobel Peace Prize. The campaign is for 5 years. If you get involved now, you will be co-creating the campaign with us.