Karuna Center was founded in 1994 to address the growing global challenges of ethnic, religious and political conflict. Our first long-term project engaged us in post-conflict reconciliation between former neighbors after the devastation of the Bosnian war. Karuna Center has worked in more than 25 countries around the world.
The Karuna Center for Peacebuilding, Inc. is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. From our Amherst, MA office our staff of four professionals along with our Board of Directors, International Advisory Board, and group of twelve Peacebuilding Associates work to develop and implement programs around the world.
In partnership with the School for International Training in Vermont, Karuna Center staff and Associates also lead a summer institute and series of graduate certificate programs known as Conflict Transformation Across Cultures (CONTACT).
In addition, we are a member of the Alliance for Peacebuilding, a network of peacebuilding organizations from the US and abroad and an affiliate organization of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation.
Many of Karuna Center's earliest programs took place in South Asia. Karuna is the Sanskrit word for compassion.
MISSION AND PURPOSE
The Karuna Center for Peacebuilding is committed to the development and implementation of innovative, sustainable strategies for community reconciliation and transformation in societies where ethnic, religious and sectarian conflicts threaten the possibility of stable democracy. Since 1993 we have pioneered effective multi-sector training programs that promote genuine dialogue, reconciliation, cooperative problem solving, and nonviolent solutions in over 20 troubled or war-torn countries. Working by invitation and in partnership with in-country organizations, the Karuna Center leads peacebuilding trainings and dialogue workshops specifically designed to foster trust and communication between conflicting groups and to promote inter-communal projects that can advance a healthy civil society capable of supporting viable democratic institutions.
Karuna Center's approach to peacebuilding aims to assist communities and societies to create sustainable peace. Karuna Center works in every stage of a conflict – analyzing and addressing the root causes of tension, leading interventions to prevent further violent escalation, and encouraging reconciliation.
Design and Delivery of Peacebuilding Programs and Courses in:
- Conflict Transformation
- Peace Leadership and Advocacy
- Psycho-Social Interventions and Healing
- Women's Leadership and Empowerment
- Inter-Communal Dialogue for Tolerance and Reconciliation
- Promoting Participatory Democracy and Civil Society Development
- Conflict Sensitive Development
- Capacity Building in Conflict Management for INGOs
- Managing Diversity Programs for US-based organization and academic institutions
Karuna Center also offers keynote addresses on contemporary issues in peacebuilding and reconciliation.
KCP programs are developed in collaboration with local partners and stakeholders, such as civil society organizations, educational and religious organizations, government ministries, and regional peacebuilders. All programs may be conducted in French and can include Training-of-Trainers components.