The Power of Goodness project run by Peacebuilding UK and local partner CPCD in Chechnya continues to organize round tables in remote areas of the Chechen Republic. In January our colleague and psychologist Birlant Mudaeva organized a round table on the theme “Extremism – its Sources and Consequences” at High School № 1 in the village of Alkhazurova. Participants of the roundtable included students of classes 9 to 11, a representative of the local administration, village elders, a local religious leader, parents and educators from the school.
Birlant shared with participants about the consequences of radical influences that are at work through social networks, which most young people use extensively and may be exposed to. Cases of young Chechen men and women being recruited to join ISIS in Syria have increased over the last 5 years. Prevention of extremism through education allows us to protect against the negative impact of such influences. The compassionate values and examples provided through the Power of Goodness stories provides a positive alternative to the violence and fear propagated by the extremists. Bringing members of local communities together to coordinate their responses to extremism in this way raises awareness and the effectiveness of the response. Further meetings are planned in Alkhazurova and other communities.