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mika-kashtanMy name is Miki Kashtan. I grew up in Israel, one of the most tortured pieces of land in the world. Now I dedicate my life to making war obsolete. I am the Face of Peace.

During the war in 1973 I decided to leave Israel. I couldn’t bear to live where people were killing each other. In 1974 I was drafted into the army for two years. In 1983, after one more war, I moved to New York. In 1988 I started a journey that led me from despair and cynicism into passionate vision. In my vision I see a world organized around attending to the needs of all life with the natural generosity that emerges when we live free of coercion and engage wholeheartedly with each other. I discovered Nonviolent Communication in 1994 and recognized its revolutionary power to transform consciousness, action, and social systems to align with that vision. Since then, I have channeled all my creative powers to embrace, integrate, and bring to the world the shining possibility of global peace and collaboration. In 2002 I co-founded Bay Area Nonviolent Communication in Oakland (BayNVC).

“We use Nonviolent Communication as our foundation, a consciousness, language, and practice that allow us to see everyone’s humanity, including our own…”

BayNVC is committed to working to create a world where everyone’s needs matter and people have the skills to make peace. We have dedicated ourselves to seeding and nurturing change agents who can extend the reach of the message of hope and peace beyond what we can do alone. We use Nonviolent Communication as our foundation, a consciousness, language, and practice that allow us to see everyone’s humanity, including our own, to dialogue with others in the face of disagreement, and to create group and systemic structures that enhance inclusivity and effectiveness in working together across differences.

As part of this work I supported the Peace Alliance for five years by hosting conference calls where I coached activists on how to model and embody the peace they wanted to create in the world. I also facilitated the 3rd summit of the Global Alliance for Ministries and Departments of Peace in Japan in 2007. I have worked to empower people committed to nonviolence to take leadership in the world. Some of my former students are in South-East Asia working with NGOs and others to provide peace education and to support healing from the trauma of war. More recently I am focusing on empowering people in existing positions of leadership to embrace nonviolence and transform their use of power. I work with people at all levels in organizations to create an atmosphere of trust and collaboration even across power differences within organizations and to put everyone’s needs on the table. I blog regularly on The Fearless Heart and host The Conflict Hotline, a TV show that demonstrates how conflict can be transformed using the tools and consciousness of Nonviolent Communication.

read-more-face Read more spotlighted stories from Faces of Peace here.  You can also read inspiring stories from people around the world who are posting sharing their own stories here.  Please post your own story today!
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