1. The underlying vision of all development is to improve the lives and well-being of people who live on the margins of society and who often lack basic resources available to the broader population. This includes those who live in debilitating conditions of poverty or who may, for various reasons, lack access to commonly accepted standards of education, health, and economic opportunity. It especially includes “the kids” who not only need education, health care, and economic resources but also a sense of hope and purpose.
2. The determining factors when assessing, planning, and implementing each Peacework project are the development needs and objectives identified by local community or village citizens. The unique insights and experience of local community leaders should ultimately determine project goals, planning, and implementation.
3. Peacework’s foundational principle is not “helping people” but rather “working alongside” local community or village partners in the process of their own development and with a full appreciation of a local community’s independence and self-determination. It is our hope and intention to bring new resources to that process and also inform those with resources about the true dynamics and obstacles to development.
4. Functionally, it is Peacework’s objective to match the human and material resources of institutions and organizations within the developed world with the needs in local communities and villages in the developing world; ostensibly to represent the resource institutions and their capacity to the village and to represent the village resources, needs, and capacity to the resource institutions.
5. The security and safety of all participants is paramount regardless of the type of project, complexity of the partnership, logistics, or location.
6. Every project is planned and implemented with genuine respect for the culture and customs of the people involved on all sides, with deference to the norms and customs of the host community.
7. Every project begins with a thorough community needs assessment and is conducted with a detailed risk management plan and emergency protocol. As part of that protocol, Peacework staff members are available 24/7 throughout the project. We have the capacity, along with our global assist contractor On Call International, to respond as thoroughly and as rapidly as possible to almost any medical or other emergency situation.
8. While we welcome the opportunity to work on short-term projects, it is our goal to foster long-term partnerships in international development, education, and service that promote lasting relationships, best utilize resources, and offer the most effective and comprehensive outcomes. We hope those outcomes will have tangible, measurable benefits and lead to positive, lasting social change. We believe that the optimal strategy for achieving this goal is the Peacework Village Network in which resource institutions and local communities plan and work alongside one another over several years and where individuals working together in business, education, health, law, infrastructure, technology, and other fields support a mutual, comprehensive vision of development.