On 30 September 2014, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, through His Excellency Dr. Ziad Aldrees, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of Saudi Arabia to UNESCO, approved the release of USD 2,050,000 for Phase II of the “Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Programme for a Culture of Peace and Dialogue” implemented by UNESCO, in close cooperation with the King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Centre for National Dialogue. The ten approved projects under the Phase II will scale up the long-term sustainability of capacity building initiatives and tools geared to the promotion of intercultural dialogue.
Main achievements in Phase I launched in 2012, include, among others, the elaboration of tools and guidelines to assist Member States in the revision of textbooks and curricula free from gender, cultural or religious stereotypes; dialogue and e-training platforms to empower young journalists skills in media information literacy and intercultural dialogue, graduate and postgraduate diplomas in universities in the Arab States as well as pertinent online dialogue-based resources. A pedagogical manual on “South-South Philosophical Dialogue” and a touring exhibition on “Writing Peace” were prepared to highlight the contribution of each culture and civilization to the building of a peaceful world for all. The Programme also offered a platform on which youth could share their vision on culture of peace and dialogue, which involved an International Conference on “Youth Volunteering and Dialogue” that was held in Jeddah in December 2013, but also the international contest on “Pathways to a culture of peace” and capacity building workshops within the “Learning to live together media campaign” and “Reporting to the other” initiatives.
The International Programme contributes to UNESCO’s work on the promotion of intercultural dialogue for mutual understanding and cooperation for peace, thus echoing the Organization’s commitments as lead UN agency for the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022).