We Aim To:
- Build bridges between communities, particularly Muslim and Jewish communities in the UK.
- Prevent conflict and discrimination between minority and marginalised groups
- Use media and the arts as a tool for positive social change
In 2006 Salaam Shalom was founded on the premise that, by enabling greater familiarity and understanding between people of different faiths and cultures, fears and myths are dispelled, resulting in a more tolerant, socially cohesive society. We continue to be driven by the belief that encouraging dialogue between different communities is a fundamental building block in this process.
Our current objectives are;
- Providing safe spaces for dialogue between British Muslims and Jews that addresses contentious issues, such as the Israel-Palestine conflict.
- Better equipping British Muslim and Jewish communities to prevent and address contentious issues within and between their communities.
- Helping young people understand their role and responsibility in preventing prejudice and discrimination.
- Better equipping teachers with creative resources to build safe spaces for dialogue and prevent discrimination amongst the young people they work with.
- Helping children value the diversity of the communities they live within and so they feel more confident to challenge prejudice and stereotyping.
- Helping children feel more confident engaging with people from different communities face-to-face and through Media.
And our current activities are;
- Proud2B project (for children 9-11 yrs) (regionally)
- Resistance project (for young people 14-19 yrs) (locally- nationally)
- Salaam Shalom Mediation for Jewish-Muslim Dialogue (nationally)
- Volunteer led projects that support our aims (locally)
The Tudor Trust funded Salaam Shalom for five years for 2010. It has also been supported by The Rayne Foundation, The Merchant Venturers, The Edith Maud Ellis Charitable Trust, Comic Relief, the Police Commissioner, Bristol City Council Development, Bristol City Council Community Cohesion and local community partnership funding since 2012. Individual project funding has also come from The Ats Council England and the Heritage Lottery Fund. Salaam Shalom needs support to continue its work. Please contact us if you would like to make a donation.
Our aims include building relations between Muslims, Jews, as well as the wider communities that they are part of. To build relations between these communities, we use topics of shared interest to provoke discussions that reveal shared experiences, ideology, aspirations, values and fears.
Through finding common ground, we hope to foster positive intercommunity relations and by building these relations it is possible to tackle more contentious issues constructively.
Another point to this is challenging stereotypes and misconceptions. It is important that we provide people with an opportunity not only to share their religious and cultural identity, but to also defy pidegeon-holing, by representing themselves as members of wider society and as individuals.
Salaam Shalom began as an online Radio station; now we are engaging more broadly with our communities, through different forms of outreach projects and activities. Photography, creative writing, drama, debate and film are some of the mediums we are using, along with continuing to produce podcasts.
We are a UK based project, and Palestine-Israel is not our focus. What happens in Palestine-Israel impacts on the experiences of Muslims and Jews, among others, in the UK. There are a large range of views on Palestine and Israel within our communities, and we do not expect all who are involved with Salaam Shalom to share any particular view. However, as an organisation, we recognise that Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza systematically violates Palestinians’ freedom, dignity and human rights. We also acknowledge many Israelis do have legitimate fears about their safety and security due to the risk of attacks. Our hearts break for all Israelis and Palestinians who are harmed and killed in the violence that has been ongoing for decades, and we acknowledge that Palestinians are disproportionately affected in this, where Israel has vastly more military power at their disposal.