AEUB Caux Forum header 2018
Learning to be a Peace-Maker (LPM)
16-27 July, 2018

Learning to be a Peace-Maker (LPM)

16-27 July, 2018

"Learning to be a Peace-Maker" is a training course for young European Muslims and their peers (aged 18-30), designed and delivered by British broadcaster and Imam, Ajmal Masroor, in association with Initiatives of Change.

This is a unique programme, combining a course in peace-making for young European Muslims and their peers, with their participation in the Addressing Europe’s Unfinished Business – Tools for Changemakers forum.

The purpose of the first part of the programme (16-22 July) is to provide knowledge about Islamic approaches to Peace-Making as a basis for ‘internal dialogue’ between young Europeans.

The purpose of the second part of the programme (23-27 July) is to enable the participants to take part with Europeans of all ages and backgrounds in a conference addressing critical issues facing all Europeans.

The aim of the programme is to:
  • Inspire, equip and connect young Europeans to become peace-makers
  • Foster peace-making and trust-building between European Muslims and their counterparts in the wider society
  • Empower young Muslims to address questions/misinformation within their own community and outside in the wider society
  • Empower young Europeans who are not Muslim to address questions/misinformation within their own community about Muslims in Europe.




Young European Muslims are either born or brought up here. Their parents straddle the ethnic and European cultures. They have an expectation that their children will be culturally more ethnic. However, their children are more familiar and at home with European culture. This programme defuses that tension and helps make young Muslims’ European and Islamic identities symbiotic. In the current environment of increasing hostility towards Islam, which is seen as a foreign and alien religion, Muslims are viewed with suspicion. It is imperative to help young Muslims form a confident European Muslim identity.

Islam requires Muslims to be at peace with themselves and others. We are currently witnessing the proliferation of terrorism, extremism, death and destruction all over the world. Many cities across Europe have suffered terrible attacks and many lives have been lost. Most of these recent attacks have been attributed to terrorism inspired by Islam. The truth is that terrorism has no religion, race or colour. It is simply evil. But the most serious consequence has been the fissure that has developed between communities.

This course will help young European Muslims and their peers to understand that they can play a very important role in bringing communities together. It will help them engage in honest conversation which brings root causes of conflict to light, builds trust and brings healing. In the same way, those who are not Muslims will gain a better understanding of their friends and neighbours who are Muslims, build better relationships and friendships, and consequently create a more cohesive society.




Between 2009 and 2012, Initiatives of Change (IofC) and Imam and broadcaster Ajmal Masroor delivered the ‘Learning to be a Peace-Maker’ (LPM) programme in countries across Europe, including Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, France and the UK. This included two cycles of Foundation and Advanced Courses at IofC’s international conference centre in Caux, Switzerland. Due to the timing of Ramadan, the programme was paused, but will now recommence.

A total of 330 have participated from 9 European countries. It was publicly launched in the UK parliament in 2012.


The ‘Learning to be a Peace-Maker’ course

The course will be conducted in a highly interactive way, combining talks from Imam Masroor and other scholars, with small group work. Its modules are:

What Peace-making Means and What it Entails

Participants will explore:

  • Jurisprudence (fiqh) of Peace-making, and the theological principles of peace-making through examination of Islamic texts and its contexts
    • War and Peace
  • Prophets in peace-making and aspects of the life of the Prophet Mohammed and his peace-making initiatives
    • Violence and Extremism
    • Loyalty and Citizenship
    • Inner Dimensions of Peace
  • The characteristics of peace-makers and peace-making and their effects on communities and the world.



Taking part in Learning to be a Peacemaker programme in Caux 2011, was the first time I truly felt there were native Europeans who might unconditionally support me as a member of society. They didn’t give a hint of frowning on the cultural heritage of my parents nor imposing on me a sense of inadequacy because of my hybrid identity. It was only when I met people from all over Europe who held me in their hearts, that I came to hold Europe in my heart!

Javed Latif, Netherlands


Reports and videos from previous programmes


The Team

Imam Ajmal Masroor | Lead Trainer

Ajmal Masroor is one of the Imams at four London mosques, leading Friday prayers (Jummah) on a monthly rota. Through the Barefoot Institute, he provides counselling for relationships between husband and wife, parents and children, siblings and relatives. He writes on marriage and relationship issues, and also on political, social and community matters. He is regularly invited by the media as a commentator on current affairs, and as a public speaker at conferences and seminars nationally and internationally.


Peter Riddell | Programme Coordinator

Peter Riddell has spent many years with IofC organising trust-building programmes between people of different faiths based on shared moral and spiritual values. He was coordinator of conferences at Caux between 1994 and 2003 on the theme of peace-making. He has helped found several organisations, including British-Arab Exchanges, Somali Initiative for Dialogue and Democracy and the Balfour Project. He is currently Convenor of IofC UK’s Agenda for Reconciliation programme, whose main training course is ‘Refugees as Re-Builders’, focusing on Dialogue Facilitation, Ethical Leadership and Sustainable Livelihood, for refugees who wish to contribute to rebuilding their country of origin.