AVP Community Workshops making a difference in Springfield, MA

Large turnout at AVP Open House on MLK Saturday in Springfield

19 Jan 2015

There was a great turnout for the AVP open house on Martin Luther King Saturday in Springfield, and some TV stations were on hand to capture the good work being done by our AVP facilitators.  Here are two videos that capture what occurred at the MLK Open House:  The first from 22 News WWLP is entitled Frustrated with violence, Springfield residents strive for peace through “AVP”  The other video from CBS 3 Springfield is entitled Group meets in Springfield to discuss alternatives to violence Kathy Rubenstein wrote an excellent article in the Fall 2014 edition of the AVP Massachusetts Newsletter (see page 8) about the history of the program in Springfield and how it has grown... more »

AVP Massachusetts Newsletter

Fall 2014 Edition

6 Nov 2014

download here
(English & Spanish PDF)
This edition provides news about the AVP International Gathering in Dublin, Ireland.   It also includes stories about the Annual Pot Luck Event, the Seeds of Equality Exercise, a special Spanish workshop at MCI-Shirley, and an update about the AVP Springfield Community program... more »

What are you doing for Peace One Day?

AVP supports International Peace Day with workshops around the world

21 Sep 2014

We all need peace to live, and this day of global ceasefire and non-violence is a chance to recognise and work with others towards peace in our world. Last year we registered 21 events in 5 countries including 4 Canadian Provinces, 3 Australian Territories, and 13 US states... more »

AVP International Gathering in Ireland

Our Gathering brought us together to share, learn and celebrate

13 Jul 2014

download updated information about AVP structures here
(English & Spanish PDF)
154 AVPers from 43 countries send greetings from the beautiful and historic surroundings of the Maynooth campus, Ireland.   Under the guiding lights of diversity and inclusion we search in our different and similar ways for peaceful pathways into the future... more »

AVP Massachusetts - Spring Newsletter

Apr 2014

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(English & Spanish PDF)
This issue of the newsletter reports back from AVP National Gathering held in May in Philadelphia, introduces our new AVP-MA Chairman, and provides news about Facilitator Training, DOC Awards and Recognition, Trauma Workshops in Nepal, Community Workshops in Springfield, and an HROC Workshop. more »

Article on AVP in Nairobi slums

Mathare to host peace meeting

10 Mar 2014

LYNET IGADWAH, NairobiNews Mathare area will tomorrow host a forum that seeks to foster peaceful co-existance among residents. The area is one of the most volatile in the county with the latest incident occurring a year ago where residents clashed following a Supreme Court ruling on the presidential election petition... more »

Vacancy for Scotland Coordinator

AVP Britain is looking for the right person to build on its successes

12 Feb 2014

AVP Scotland Co-ordinator (0. 6) £24K pro-rata (fixed-term for 18 months) We are recruiting a part-time National Co-ordinator for Scotland (0... more »

2014 African Regional Gathering - Kenya

The first continental AVP gathering in Africa allows our groups to learn and share with one another

29 Jan 2014

AVP facilitators have been active in Africa for decades, developing trauma programmes in Rwanda and Burundi after the genocide, tackling Christian-Muslim tensions in Nigeria and East Africa, helping to heal post-apartheid divides in South Africa, and post-election scars in Kenya. There is a huge amount to be learnt, celebrated and grown from our African facilitators, and this regional gathering allows nearly 100 local facilitators, from across the continent, to come together and share their experiences... more »

AVP International Gathering 2014

The next IG will be held in Ireland - 13-19 July 2014

30 Nov 2013

Come join us!!! AVP International Gathering Maynooth University, Ireland 13-19 July 2014 Breakout sessions on many topics, including youth, prison and trauma healing Regional meetings - come meet your neighbors Growing AVP in frontline situations Pre-conference workshops on Trauma, Discernment, Youth, Continuing Learning Planning for the 2014 AVP International Gathering in Ireland is well underway. Please plan to join us – we hope to hear from many of you as we go forward with ideas and contributions for the programme... more »

Ally Al Dickerson writes about AVP

Ally Al returned home from prison to Rochester and now coordinates AVP's Rochester Landing Strip and facilitates Rochester community workshops

23 Oct 2013

I first became involved in AVP in 1990.    I had already been incarcerated eleven years, and had been studying metaphysics and asking some metaphysical questions... more »

What are you doing for Peace One Day?

AVP will be supporting International Peace Day on Sept 21st with workshops around the world.

21 Sep 2013

We all need peace to live, and this day of global ceasefire and non-violence is a chance to recognise and work with others towards peace in our world. Last year we registered 21 events in 5 countries including 4 Canadian Provinces, 3 Australian Territories, and 13 US states... more »

AVP New York's 2013 Annual Gathering

September 6-8 - Powell House Retreat and Conference Center

19 Sep 2013

Fifteen AVP New York facilitators gathered for the annual gathering weekend, September 6-9 at Powell House, a Quaker retreat center in Old Chatham NY.   Because we were a smaller group than last year, we shared meals with another group, the Powell House Committee, many of whom are AVP supporters... more »

AVP Massachusetts - Summer Newsletter

Aug 2013

This newsletter reports back from the AVP-USA National Gathering in Florida. It also looks at community workshops in Springfield, a workshop research project at the NCCI-Gardner prison facility, organisational changes and the annual Summer Pot Luck Event... more »

International Gathering Registration Begins

Registration is now open for the 2014 International Gathering in Ireland

May 2013

Greetings AVP’ers Worldwide! Registration is now open for the 2014 AVP International Gathering in Ireland. The Gathering will take place from 13th-19th July 2014... more »

new film : Until Hope is Found

Jan 2013

Patrick Mureithi created the powerful documentary ICYIZERE:hope about HROC workshops in the aftermath of the Rwandan genocide. In his new project, he documented our HROC workshops in Kenya, dealing with trauma caused by the post-election violence... more »

PAV Encuentro Internacional 2014

Jan 2013

Primer anuncio: ¡GUARDA LA FECHA! Encuentro del AVP internacional Universidad de Maynooth, Irlanda 13 – 19 de Julio de 2014 Sesiones de grupo sobre varios temas – la juventud, la cárcel, y la curación de traumas Reuniones regionals Como crecer el AVP para situaciones de primera línea Se ha comenzado la planificación para la reunion del AVP de 2014 en Irlanda.   Por favor, planee unirse a nosotros: esperamos eschuchar de muchos de ustedes como avanzamos con ideas y contribuciones para el programa... more »

What are you doing for Peace One Day?

We are proud to participate in this global day of peace, by holding as many workshops as possible.

21 Sep 2012

AVP actively works for peace, and we will be supporting International Peace Day on Sept 21st with workshops around the world. We all need peace to live, and this day of global ceasefire and non-violence is a chance to recognise and work with others towards peace in our world... more »

AVP makes a difference at failing Philadelphia middle school

AVP training of new teachers helps turn around a school

Sep 2012

This article describes how AVP Maryland got involved with rehabilitating a school known for its violence and poor grades. more »

Reconnecting AVP to MLK’s Beloved Community

Unabridged article written for The Transformer

Jun 2012

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(English & Spanish PDF)
This article tells the story of how AVP reconnected with some of its history.   This is the complete article that was sent to the AVP/USA newsletter The Transformer for publication, but only a small portion of the article was printed in the Spring 2013 edition of that newsletter, and some important aspects were lost... more »

AVP Massachusetts - Summer Newsletter

Jun 2012

This newsletter reports back from the AVP-USA National Gathering on Memorial Day, in Maryland. It also covers working with the Department of Corrections, restarting work at NCCI-Gardner, and the annual Summer Pot Luck Event... more »

Reconciliation in Burundi

Interview with Adrien Niyongabo

May 2012

Admirable Adrien from Burundi speaks about reconciliation between Hutu and Tutsi genocide survivors, in their face to face encounters, as participants at experiential AVP/HROC workshops in Burundi. This interview was conducted by Blaze Nowara at the AVP USA National Gathering in Maryland... more »

AVP Massachusetts - Spring Newsletter

Mar 2012

AVP-MA welcomes new board members, gives special thanks to Nancy Shippen, tells the story of AVP-MA's beginnings, and prepares for the USA Gathering. Download the newsletter here (388kB PDF)... more »

AVP Nepal's journey towards self-reliance

One of our newest programmes continues to grow and develop

Feb 2012

After a pause of about a year and half AVP Nepal has rejuvenated its journey towards self-reliance. The pause provided valuable time for nurturing ideas and reinvigorated the possibilities within us... more »

International Gathering 2011 - Guatemala

Oct 2011

Our global AVP/PAV family came together in Antigua, Guatemala, for the 2011 International Gathering.   Our theme was weaving the threads for stronger community, capacity and impact worldwide... more »

Nairobi AVP Benefit Concert - Sat July 2nd

2 Jul 2011

AVP Kenya is preparing for a substantial workshop programme, in the run-up to fresh elections in Kenya in August 2012. Our Nairobi benefit concert at the German School on Saturday 2nd July raised funds and awareness for our work... more »

Peace Talks Radio covers AVP

Jul 2011

Peace Talks Radio, the anchor program of Good Radio Shows, Inc. , recently devoted a one-hour program to AVP... more »

AVP/USA Annual Gathering

27 May 2011

MOVING FORWARD!!!  Building Communities   Welcoming Diversity    Exploring New Tools for the Future The 2011 AVP/USA Annual Gathering will be in Belmont, California, May 27-30th. For more details and registration visit www... more »

In Memoriam: Stephen Angell

Smiling Steve, who spread AVP to many new countries around the world, has died aged 91

May 2011

Stephen Angell became involved in the early years of AVP.   He was instrumental to its subsequent growth and spread, including to England, the Balkans, Africa, Latin America and Australia... more »

PAV Encuentro Internacional 2011 - Guatemala

Nov 2010

El Comité del Encuentro Internacional del Proyecto Alternativas a la Violencia (PAV) se complace en anunciar la confirmación de la sede y fecha del Encuentro Internacional (EI) de 2011: Tejiendo la tela de una comunidad con capacidad e impacto mundial más fuertes. Llegada: Domingo 2 de octubre de 2011... more »

announcing International Gathering 2011 - Guatemala

Nov 2010

The AVP International Gathering Committee is pleased to announce that a date and venue have been confirmed for the 2011 International Gathering (IG): Weaving the threads for stronger community, capacity and impact worldwide. Arrival: Sunday Afternoon October 2, 2011 Departure: Saturday Morning October 8, 2011 Location: Posada Belen, Antigua Guatemala The venue is a beautiful 17th Century building, now used primarily as a Catholic retreat centre, run by the Belencito order of nuns... more »

A light has gone out... Peg Erlanger

Jul 2010

Peg Erlanger has imprinted her personality on the office of president of the Alternatives to Violence Project USA, the organization she loved so dearly. As we try to describe this wise warm loving woman our hearts are heavy... more »

Cheering the first AVP workshop by Korean facilitators

Jul 2010

The first AVP workshop was held at Helmon Retreat Center in Daejeon City, located 2 hours from Seoul. The reason why we, as facilitators, felt some feeling tension mixed with expectation was that this was initiated by Korean facilitators for the first time... more »

Growing impact of AVP for youth in KZN, South Africa

May 2010

For 11 years, the University of KwaZulu-Natal has been teaching non-violent methods of conflict resolution in schools and communities throughout KwaZulu-Natal by means of the internationally-acclaimed Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP), which the University’s Student Leadership Development initially introduced to the Province. AVP also forms one of the electives in the Certificate in Education (Participatory Development) (CEPD) courses run by the Centre for Adult Education (CAE)... more »

2010 Awards

June Adams Johnson and Professor Jo-Ann Della Giustina are honored for their community work


June Adams Johnson (Jazzy June) was recognized as a Community Builder by the United Way of North Central MA for her AVP work in prison. June facilitates AVP weekend workshops and an ongoing AVP support group in the MCI Shirley Medium prison... more »

Choosing the Other Way

Sep 2009

It was during the decade (1995-2005 A D) long Maoist-government armed conflict in Nepal that took the life of about thirteen thousand people. In December 2000, a 46 year old man was missing since ten days for no known reason... more »

Our new program in Nepal on its first birthday

A brief update, as AVP Nepal recently (and quietly) celebrated its first birthday of existence. In April and May of 2008, the first 2 Basic workshops were held in Nepal's capital city, Kathmandu... more »

Healing the Rifts

Aug 2009

The Rift Valley of Kenya experienced violence and displacement, after disputed elections in December 2007.   Participations in a Healing and Reconciliation workshop from different tribes committed to work together and rebuild several  homes which were destroyed, welcoming back their displaced neighbours... more »

Innovative youth programmes in Australia

Aug 2009

Because of the large number of workshops and the ‘low bullshit tolerance’ of young people Sydney HIP has become a melting-pot for innovation. Sydney AVP community and prison workshops have benefitted greatly from the innovation and the inclusion of restorative practice stemming from the HIP program... more »

new work with Somali refugee camps around Daadab

Jul 2009

After a long, bumpy, six hour journey from Nairobi, the first group of facilitators alighted at the Hagadera Refugee Camps. This marked the start for important new work for AVP within Somali communities... more »

New programme in Jordan established

Jul 2009

The AVP Iraq-Jordan program builds momentum with refugee youth and adults, training our first new facilitators in Amman.   This is a key first step for localising AVP work within a Middle Eastern context... more »

2009 Awards

Karing Kathy Rubenstein and Dick Nethercut were honored for their community work


Karing Kathy Rubenstein receives the Volunteer of the Year Award at Old Colony Correctional Center in Bridgewater MA. left to right: Supt... more »

AVP Globetrotter


The Harlem Globetrotters are an exhibition basketball team that has travelled throughout North America spreading positive messages in schools (earning the nickname the 'Ambassadors of Goodwill'). AVP Globetrotter was created in the same tradition... more »

AVP - International Coordinating Committee

Oct 2008

Within the 2008 International Gathering in Kakamega, many of us worked hard to figure out what should be the face and structure of AVP International to respond to needs in today's often violent world. To insure that all voices were heard, we held a plenary session where all delegates chose a group that identified with their concern and vision for such an organization... more »

AVP International Gathering 2008 - Kenya

Sep 2008

The International Gathering brought together about 120 people from 23 countries, in Kakamega, Western Kenya. It was extraordinary to spend 5 days with creative, innovative, dedicated people who are all committed to AVP... more »

AVP in Nepal

For thirteen years, Nepal had been beset by escalating levels of violence as the Maoists increased their pressure on a corrupt and ineffective monarchy and administration. In the spring of 2006, an historic agreement was reached to hold free elections... more »

Meeting challenging needs after the Kenyan elections

Apr 2008

Kenya erupted in violence, following the disputed elections of December 2007. AVP has been extremely active, running hundreds of workshops at short notice, mainly with youth and communities affected by the violence... more »

AVP International Gathering 2006 - South Africa

At the start of spring, 104 people from 23 countries have gathered at Hartbeespoort Dam between Johannesburg and Pretoria, South Africa: a rainbow gathering in the Rainbow Nation. We have come together at The Good Shepherd Retreat Centre, a place of welcoming hospitality, peace and spirituality... more »

Doncaster Mind

One of our long-standing partnerships is with Doncaster MIND, which hosts AVP workshops for clients with mental health needs.

"Doncaster MIND as an organisation has benefitted tremendously from the partnership in terms of our enhanced reputation locally as the only provider of effective conflict resolution. " Jackie Lewis, Director... more »

Engage for Change, Newcastle

We worked with community groups in the East End of Newcastle, training members to deliver mini-sessions on nonviolence with local young people.

"Engage for Change in Newcastle has valued working with AVP because it has taken time and gained the trust of the people in the community. In a very difficult and sensitive area of our lives they have very successfully engaged with a substantial number of us to look for and work for change in our relationships... more »

Catherine's story

After a violent incident, Catherine chose to help solve social issues around her. She supports AVP with her professional skills.

I became involved with AVP about three or four years ago and support the organisation with its communications and outreach work. My journey to AVP began after I was a victim of violence when my local shop was held up at gunpoint while I was in there... more »

David's story

David is the Director of AVP Britain, and supports the growing work of our volunteer facilitators.

"As AVP's Director I feel like a wildlife gardener - I try to make sure AVP is watered with funds and that our volunteers have what they need to run our workshops well. I'm a volunteer facilitator myself so sometimes I'm also helping with the work programme... more »

Jennifer's story

As a facilitator, Jennifer started by working on her own issues, and now loves seeing the changes in herself and others.

"I became involved with AVP in 2002. I had just started working in prisons, and felt that it would be useful if I trained as a facilitator... more »

Roger's story

As a prison inmate, Roger found that AVP offered him a turning point, and helped him become a better person.

"Aggression being the biggest make up of my personality, somewhere along the line it had to change. Having completed seven anger management courses, it never seemed to work as there is always a one way answer... more »

Karen's story

Struggling with handling intense emotions, Karen found AVP workshops helped her a lot. She has now trained as a facilitator.

"The switch in my head had been pushed. The switch that reads above it, ‘Violence, Warning, Do not touch!’  Too late though, my switch had been flicked and a chain of violent behaviour began... more »

Rebecca's story

Attending AVP workshops have improved Rebecca's confidence, and helped her stand up for herself.

"My sister recommended AVP to me.   She had come across it through her charity work with the Quakers and was a facilitator... more »

Carta del Encuentro Internacional del PAV 2011

Tejiendo la tela de una comunidad con capacidad e impacto mundial más fuertes.   Carta del Encuentro Internacional del PAV Antigua, Guatemala, Octubre 2-8 de 2011 A  todos los amigos del PAV y amantes de la paz y la noviolencia en todo el mundo: Les enviamos nuestro cariñoso saludo y noticias desde la hermosa ciudad de Antigua, Guatemala... more »

The Governor's story

Jon Parkin is a former Governor of HMP Wymott, and says that AVP has been a major contributor to the success of the prison.

“I have seen a real change in many of the men who have undertaken the project. It seems to give them better understanding of self and an ability to help other people deal with issues and problems... more »

video about AVP in prisons

Information about AVP's work at HMP Grendon, and the thoughts of the Governor at the time.


"After an AVP workshop prisoners are enthusiastic about skills and the experience of fellowship.   They realise they have the capacity to manage situations much better than they thought in the past... more »