Published: April 28, 2014
"Just out of college, I joined the Peace Corps and was sent to South Korea, where I lived with a farmer family in a small village and worked on a rural community development project. After a career spent as a professor of anthropology and East Asian studies, the chance to work again for change at the grassroots level, this time with North Korean cooperative farm partners, is both an enormous challenge and an unexpected blessing." —Linda Lewis, country representative for DPRK (North Korea)
"AFSC approaches its peace-building advocacy as an opportunity to bring the voices of its partners from around the world to people in the policy community." —Alissa Wilson, Africa Public Education and Advocacy
"Seeing how AFSC launched conflict transformation activities with parents, students, and staff of St. Charles Borromée School [in Haiti]: This was my greatest source of motivation. It really took me to heart to provide my assistance to youth in my community." —Natacha Francois, facilitator in Haiti
"Being part of a project that empowers young people who live in communities marked by social exclusion and helping them solve their conflicts through nonviolent actions—it’s amazing." —Marco Bonilla, field officer in Guatemala
"I was in 12th grade in 1998 and in Banda Aceh [Indonesia], where I went to school, the civil war did not affect us. But the conflict did affect my hometown and I was also affected when I visited. I saw with my own eyes when someone was shot to death for supposedly joining the Free Aceh Movement. His body was then left in front of his house. A school near my house was set on fire. (note: After fleeing to a refugee camp, and then being kidnapped by rebels in Aceh, eventually Fadjiri became a university student and humanitarian activist.) Human values are the basis for me to work on issues of peace because when I saw people lose their rights … their sense of humanity was diminished due to terror or having to follow what is deemed right by the majority. Based on that, I had to do something." —Fadjiri, senior program officer in Indonesia
"I wanted to work in an organization that had the capacity to make real impact—experience, resources, a national presence, and a tradition of leadership—taking on the unpopular causes before they became popular. I wanted to work on social justice and also be able to be in a conversation about the spiritual dimension of the work—quite simply, love." —Eisha Mason, associate regional director for AFSC's West region
Click through this slideshow to learn from a handful of AFSC staffers about their journeys to working for lasting peace.
Then view the next slideshow, on doing work that reflects one's values.