"Peace needs…" Social Media Campaign: Creating a virtual gallery of hope

1 - 31 December 2023

Peace needs square EN


2023 was a challenging year for peacebuilders. As it ended, in many contexts political and societal tensions around the world had escalated to a point where effective communication on peacebuilding and reconciliation became increasingly arduous, even for organizations like ours, Caux Initiatives of Change, dedicated to these goals. We found ourselves treading a fine line, struggling to find the right words.

Peace needs hope
First post...

However, staying silent about peace was never an option. We wanted to convey a message of peace that was neither patronizing nor seeking a quick fix. Instead, we aimed to create a safe space, emphasizing unity in the pursuit of peace rather than division, where people could reflect without feeling pressured to take sides.

To achieve this, we launched the "Peace needs..." social media campaign in December, modelled after an advent calendar, with daily posts featuring images, core values, peacebuilder quotes, and related stories or initiatives. The posts were published on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and X for a global audience, including individual peacebuilders and peacebuilding organisations in International Geneva and elsewhere, committed to our mission to build trust across the world’s divides.

Our objectives were to foster contemplation on peace, spotlight global peacebuilders, emphasize commonalities in peace-related dialogues, and motivate personal actions, irrespective of their scale.

Peace work is not for pessimists or even for realists. You need to be able to give people hope, you have to yourself believe there is hope. Therefore it will be important […] to always trust your own inner compass.

Quote by Antje Herrberg, Chief of Staff EUCAP Sahel, chosen to launch the campaign on 1 December

Despite it being a busy time of year, the level of engagement remained consistent throughout the month. As our campaign unfolded, our social media platforms transformed into a virtual gallery of hope, showcasing inspiring stories and practical steps toward peacebuilding and demonstrating that peace isn’t just an aspiration. It is also a tangible concept, grounded in universal values, where everyone has a role to play. If peacebuilding isn't confined to specific contexts but can be practiced daily, every action has the potential to be a building-block for peace. In a world often characterized by division and conflict, the campaign reminded us that peace is a journey, one that requires continuous effort, commitment, and hope.

Peace needs all of us
...and final post.

At Initiatives of Change, we are convinced that everyone has a role to play in making peace a reality. While collecting quotes and stories, we were reminded how deeply embedded peacebuilding efforts are in our organizational mission and it was heartening to recall the many committed peacebuilders who have worked with us over the years. 

The campaign also served as a reminder that we are not alone in our peacebuilding efforts. Sometimes this work can feel lonely, but connecting and collaborating with others who share the same goal encourages us to persevere and be part of a unified effort toward peace, regardless of our location. 

Despite initial concerns that the campaign could polarize opinions, the feedback was overwhelmingly positive. For example, a senior advisor in a conflict context commented on a post, stating : “This statement encourages me to stick to my view and do what I can. Yes, peacebuilding is tedious work. Yes, the impact is often not as large scale as we would wish it to be. But it is still better to keep at it than getting discouraged. Baby steps, one after another, sum up.”

By showcasing a diverse array of peacebuilders from around the world, the campaign underscored our shared humanity and the collective power we hold to foster a more peaceful world.


This article was also published in the 2024 March edition of the Swisspeace magazine "A propos".

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By Ulrike Ott Chanu
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