Southeast Asia and the Pacific

URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific’s Cooperation Circles work to provide environmental education, empower communities through conflict mediation, develop vocational training, and create the next generation of young leaders.

Southeast Asia and the Pacific Region - peace amongst regional conflict

Cooperation Circles in URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific (SEAPac) have been engaged in peace advocacy, conflict mediation, interfaith dialogues, promotion of culture and arts, environmental efforts and development of youth education and leadership.

Regional Support Staff

  • Nivy Balachandran, Regional Coordinator for SEAPac - Pacific Zone
  • Sothearat Seoung, Regional Coordinator for SEAPac - West Zone
  • TBD, Regional Coordinator for SEAPac - East Zone
  • Potre D. Diampuan, Senior Interfaith Representative

Here are examples of URI’s work in this region:

Religious and cultural stereotypes prevent people from truly being able to see one another, leading to divided communities where conflict persists. With URI’s support, Regional Coordinator Sothearat Seoung started a public radio program called "Religions Unite to Build Culture of Peace and Justice." Through the program, he invites Cooperation Circle members to engage people of different faiths in dialogue, addressing persistent prejudices and finding ways to cooperate for the good of their communities in Cambodia. For many listeners, the program serves as an introduction to the concept of interfaith harmony.

Responding to the rise in Muslim immigration in historically Catholic Manila, and the corresponding rise in conflict, URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific has developed a model program, The Priest-Imam Forum, which creates a path for continued dialogue that helps to bridge the gap between cultures. In Mindanao, URI Cooperation Circles are helping disenfranchised Muslim communities build more productive relationships with the military and government.

Search for Cooperation Circles (CCs) in Southeast Asia and the Pacific

Stories From URI Southeast Asia and the Pacific

The way of peace

I’ve heard veteran peace activists speak of peacebuilding as a “marathon endeavor” that required conviction, perseverance, and a marathon mentality. Indeed, that is true. But, after having engaged myself in the journey for almost twelve years, I have learned that there are other things about peacebuilding as well that, from another perspective, would likewise be true.

Being Change

It is a pleasure and privilege to share insights and reflections with you on the lessons learned from my endeavors at building relationships of mutual respect, understanding and cooperation between and among peoples of diverse cultures and beliefs in my part of the world. One of the most powerful moving force for me in the endeavor is the vision of a better world that the URI--with its global community of people of diverse religions, spiritual expressions, and indigenous traditions--has ingited in me.  In striving to "be the change that I wish to see", I have gained lessons learned that I wish to humbly share here with you.

Interfaith Grassroots Peace Builder Commemorates International Day of Peace with Local and International Peace Makers

PHOTO: From left to right are Rosmary Kabaki, Catherine Lally both from the Non Violent Peaceforce, Casmir Saracan Mackno a Secretary of Barangay Baraason, Kauswagan Lanao del Norte, Pakigdait Inc. director Musa Mohamad Sanguila, Slabe Sennay of Non violent peaceforce, Mr. Assadik Alfitouri of Libyan contingent as International Monitoring Team for the GRP-MILF Peace talk, Col. Cresente Ferrer, Commander of the 601st Brigade of the Philippine Army, Capt. James Upson U.S. Military Advisory Group and last Jane Bernardo, Chairperson of the Civil Society Organization Forum for Peace