July 15, 2010
12:00 am

Photo: Creative Learning

Here’s an organization that’s working to promote peace by supporting American volunteerism in mostly-Muslim parts of the world. That’s a cause worth supporting!

And they have  announced an essay contest and a video contest. If I had done anything that qualified, I’d definitely enter this contest. The prizes are real ($2,000 for the 1st place video; $1,000 for the first place essay) and my guess is that there won’t be a huge number of competing entries. Deadline is July 15, 2010.

America’s Unofficial Ambassadors

Did you teach English to villagers in Morocco, deliver disaster relief in Indonesia, or train women candidates to run for election in Kuwait?

Were you a medical volunteer in Uzbekistan, an art teacher in Afghanistan, or a mediation trainer in Niger?

Did you coach a basketball camp in Mali or run a photography workshop in Jordan?

If you are an American who worked or volunteered in the fields of education, unmet human needs, justice and rights, or creative expression in a Muslim majority country in Africa, the Middle East, or Asia please take a few minutes to join our Community of America’s Unofficial Ambassadors. Read more

We are excited to announce our first annual video and essay contests, with prizes that include cash awards and publication! The contests run along the themes of the impact of service, representing America, and remarkable local partners. The deadline for entry is July 15. Please click here for full details.”

More about AUA:

“AUA is based upon the premise that traditional diplomatic efforts and official development assistance are not sufficient to combat the root causes of the major challenges that face the United States and the Muslim World, ranging from failing states and the spread of extremist ideologies to the harmful stereotypes of the “other” that exist on a popular level.

“In addition to top down governmental approaches, a key to building and sustaining peace between America and the Muslim World are efforts that foster people-to-people relationships and help to alleviate human development challenges at the grassroots level where they receive the least dedicated resources. There is untapped potential among American citizens to support the initiatives of local leaders throughout the Muslim World with their volunteer service, technical expertise, and resources. At the same time, such high impact service dissipates negative stereotypes between Americans and Muslims and improves relations between the United States and the Muslim World.”

AUA is a program of the Washington, DC-based non-profit Creative Learning, which is another organization that looks like it’s worth checking out.


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