Roman Koval

Educate to Mediate: Shaping Future Peacebuilders in Ukraine

In 2013 and 2014, student-led protests broke out against the use of authoritarian power in Ukraine. But how did peace education play a role? And how did civil society cause a shift from mediation in the classroom to mediation on the streets?

2013 was a significant year in Ukraine. On 21st November 2013, a student-led protest broke out in response to Ukraine’s former President Viktor Yanukovych’s decision to end talks on a Ukraine-European Union Association Agreement. Referred to as ‘Euromaidan’, it began peacefully, however, as this march gained traction, it was met with violence from the police. Older generations began to join the students, expanding the civil resistance against the use of authoritarian power. Tensions erupted again on the 20th February 2014, which would later be known as ‘the Revolution of Dignity’. Scenes of street clashes, petrol bombs and the shooting of protesters flooded television screens and newspapers.

To shed some light on these events and the role that peace education played, we sat down with Roman Koval, Founder and Head of Board at the Institute for Peace and Common Ground, for the Peace Corner podcast. Roman highlights how education in schools can shape and form the lives of peacebuilders. He shares personal stories of training those who went on to negotiate and mitigate violent conflict in the Maidan protests. To find out how Roman helped to shift mediation from the classroom to the streets of Ukraine, tune in here!

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