Youth Peace Academy

  • The first edition of our Youth Peace Academy took place in late July 2018 & was a great success


    Photo available here. 

    Written Report Youth Peace Academy 2018

    What it was?

    A fully funded 3 day youth training programme on all aspects of campaigning work, focusing on the nuclear disarmament movement. Participants learnt about nuclear weapons, communication tactics, lobbying activities, grassroots empowerment, legislative change, online engagement, fundraising tools and much more.

    PROGRAMME Programme Youth Peace Academy       


    • Special International Guest: Hiroshima Survivor (Hibakusha)  Mr. IESHIMA Masashi to give a testimony
    • Plenary sessions and building skills group lessons on a variety of campaigning topics;
    • The Friday evening will also include FREE entry into MugStock Festival (event: MugStock 2018: ***Early Bird Tickets on Sale Now***). The highlight of the evening will be the formation of a human peace logo followed by music and fun with Colonel Mustard & The Dijon 5 headlining. Thank you to the MugStock Family for making that happen!
    • “InspYre” social evening on Saturday 28th of July with entertaining & experience sharing (also open to non academy participants);
    • Action Field Trip on Sunday 29th of July to discover more about the Faslane Nuclear Base & Faslane Peace Camp (strictly educational – no direct action involved).
    • Speaker from 2017 Nobel Peace Prize Winner – ICAN, Ross Greer MSP (youngest ever MSP) and many more

    Please note. The event is taking place in Glasgow and is for over 18’s only (at the time of the event). Peace Education Scotland is covering accommodation, food, training and transport costs during the academy. We can cover up to £10/person transport to get to Glasgow, but participants from farther away may need to top it up to get there. Please keep your travel receipts. If selected, you will be requested to pay a fully refundable deposit of £20. This is to avoid no-shows. Cancellations will be possible if sufficient time is allowed or/and a substitute participant is found.

    Accommodation: SYHA Glasgow Youth Hostel, 7-8 Park Terrace, Glasgow, G3 6BY

    Day venue: Uni of Strathclyde Students’ Association, 90 John Street, Glasgow, G1 1JH, Vertigo Rooms (level 8)

    We can accept up to 100 participants with accommodation needs. An additional number of 20 participants may be considered if they have accommodation arrangements elsewhere in Glasgow (family/friends).

    We are looking for volunteers to help with this event. Please get in touch.

    International guest from Japan: Hibakusha (被爆者Mr. IESHIMA Masashi

    We have the privilege to welcome to the academy a surviving victim of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. A once in a lifetime dialogue for all the academy participants.

    Masashi was born in 1942 at Ushita-machi, Hiroshima City. At the time of the atomic bombing, Masashi was a toddler, playing inside his house located at 1.8 kilometers from the blast center. Around the end of the summer in 1945, he moved to his grandparents’ house in Tottori Prefecture, where he grew up. Upon graduating from a university, he started working at the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications. After retiring from the Ministry work in 2001 as the director of the East Japan Business Center of Postal Savings, he moved on to serve in postal-related agencies and companies for another 6 years.

    Then he decided to join Toyukai (Tokyo Federation of A-Bomb Survivors Associations), with the determination to dedicate the rest of his life to the work of abolishing nuclear weapons and sharing his A-bomb experience with younger generations.


    David Newbigging – Facilitator of “Campaigning Video Making”

    BAFTA New Talent winning Director and Storyboard Artist. David has directed shorts films, commercials and a feature film that have screened on television and in film festivals in Europe, the US and Asia. He has worked in community and educational arts, film and television. More on his work here.

    Sessions overview

    This session will focus on how to create watchable, engaging campaign videos from a practical perspective. We will cover how to engage your audience, what equipment you need and how to use it, visual storytelling and how to get your content out there. There will be a small selection of equipment available to get your hands on.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Media skills, photography, sound recording, storytelling & citizen journalism.


    Martin Birdseye – Facilitator of “Making the Moral Argument”

    Martin is a retired engineer and full-time peace activist who works to raise the understanding of the ethics of weapons of mass destruction. A long-term member of CND and PAX Christi he focuses on nuclear weapons, being currently a co-chair of Christian CND. To see some of his work on the topic, including the Nuclear Morality Flowchart please visit

    Sessions overview

    The most powerful and most permanent reason for abolition of nuclear weapons is the moral argument. This session will look at the role of ethics in the nuclear weapons debate and in the emerging global awareness of responsibility for achieving a nuclear weapons-free future. Starting from a personal algorithm (a decision flow-chart) we can work out our own moral standpoint; and go on from that to see how we can apply the essential moral standards that hold together human society to the nuclear weapons debate. ‘Mind Maps’ can help us assemble and make the arguments. From the confidence of a consistent, complete and logical starting point we can examine ways to bring the various sectors of society, one step at a time, towards a new approach to human security and solidarity. And we can see how these practical methods can be applicable across the inter-related fields of Peace, Social Justice and Environmental campaigning

    Skills aiming to develop

    Analytical skills, critical thinking, moral reasoning, decision – making abilities and will raise awareness of the moral implications of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction.


    Elizabeth Minor – Facilitator of “Driving legislative change”

    Elizabeth works for the London-based organisation Article 36, where she undertakes research, policy analysis and advocacy for the international prohibition and restriction of certain weapons and practices in the use of force. She focuses particularly on armed drones and nuclear weapons. As part of the Nobel Peace Prize winning International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN),  she took part in the negotiations of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons at the UN in New York last year. More on her work here.

    Session overview

    This session will look at how we push for a particular type of change at international level – the agreement of new treaties and standards. Using the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons as a case study, we will look at how international coalitions taking a humanitarian approach to disarmament issues have sought to re-frame the international policy debate around certain weapons, to focus on their unacceptable impacts rather than claims of their strategic value. We explore how campaigners engage with state representatives at the international level in the UN and other spaces, to build the commitment and will to act, and to ensure certain provisions and obligations are agreed in the final outcome.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Deepening your understanding of: working in an international diplomatic environment; the process of treaty negotiations; advocacy work in international coalitions; campaign strategies to change political narratives.


    Alastair Brian Facilitator of “Fact checking & Investigative Journalism

    Alastair is a freelance journalist who has worked for STV News, ITV Border and BBC Scotland across features, news and politics. He is the fact-checker for Ferret Fact Service and runs fact-checking workshops across the country. He graduated in MA Multimedia Journalism from Glasgow Caledonian University in 2013, and has a BA Politics and International Relations from the University of Aberdeen.

    Sessions overview

    The session will look at where to find relevant and important information online, how to structure and send information requests to public bodies, and how to check whether politicians and public figures are telling the truth.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Investigative skills, analytical and critical thinking, research skills, sense of skepticism, the ability to absorb information quickly and spot relevant information


    Alison Page Facilitator of “Public Speaking & Presentations”

    Prior to retirement, Alison worked in Organisational Development in a large government department for over 20 years before setting up her own coaching and learning consultancy.

    Sessions overview

    Alison is a member of the Isle of Arran CND Branch. She will be facilitating training sessions on presentation skills for delegates attending the Peace Academy.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Communication skills, presentation skills, cohesion and clarity, building confidence


    Special guest: Ross Greer MSP 

    Ross Greer is the youngest ever MSP, elected at the 2016 election at the age of 21 years old. Member of the Scottish Green Party. He has been invited to give his views as an elected member on what are the most effective ways for individual campaigners or groups to make contact with MSPs and lobby for a cause as well as give more details of youth involvement in politics and campaigning. This will be followed by a short Q&A session.





    Special guest: Claudia Beamish MSP

    Claudia Beamish MSP is a member of the Scottish Labour Party. She is an active member of the Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on Nuclear Disarmament with a particular interest on environment and climate change. She has been invited to give her views as an elected member on what are the most effective ways for individual campaigners or groups to make contact with MSPs and lobby for a cause as well. This will be followed by a short Q&A session.





    Special guest: Bill Kidd MSP

    Bill is a member of the Scottish National Party and he is the convener of the Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on Nuclear Disarmament. He is the most active member of the Scottish Parliament with regards to nuclear disarmament and has been a supporter of the cause for many years. He has been invited to speak about how cross party groups work and to give general lobbying tips & advice. He will also chair the “Elected Representatives” session.





    Special guest: Jonathon Shafi,  anti austerity & anti war campaigner, Co-founder of RIC

    Jonathon has been invited to give an anti imperialist background talk on the role and policy direction of Britain in the world today. He will also talk about alternative policies which need to be developed to bring about a more secure and peaceful world and share his views on how we deal with personal poverty and lack of opportunity for so many people in today’s world.





    Special guest: Sean Hoyle – RMT President Sean Hoyle – Building a campaign 

    National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) is one of Britain’s fastest growing trade unions. The RMT membership rose under and following the leadership of Bob Crow, with membership increasing from 57,000 in 2002 to over 80,000 members. It is widely regarded as one of the more radical trade unions in Great Britain able to organise massive industrial action within the transport industry, especially in the railway sector.

    Sean will give a bit of background on the RMT and how their union has increased its
    membership in recent years as well as more details about campaigning and communication strategies used by the union in relation to workplace disputes and to the wider projects they are involved in.


    John Matthews Facilitator of “Working with Press” 

    John’s work experience includes writing and presenting a weekly news review for BBC Radio Scotland, PR work for a wide variety of charities and private sector companies, political correspondent for Asian Voice Scotland, reporter and sub editor with Archant, The Extra group and the Sunday Post, editor of three titles with Johnston Press. John also holds one of Scotland’s two seats on the National Union of Journalists’ National Executive Council.

    Sessions overview

    An interactive discussion on how to maximise results from your work with the press, providing useful tips and advice to get your message across.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Building a good level of understanding on how media work and what to say to them, ability to work effectively with journalists, ability to find different angles for a story and be open to all forms of press.


    Sarah Wiktorski co – facilitator of “Building your own campaign” 

    Sarah is currently employed with the Scottish Trades Union Congress as their Campaigns & Communications Officer. She previously was a trade union organiser, and has worked on national campaigns such as Better Than Zero and the Scottish Living Wage Campaign. Sarah has also worked extensively in the third sector, specifically with Disabled People’s Organisations and within the drug & alcohol treatment sector. She joined her local branch of the CND whilst at high school and was actively involved in the campaign at both a local and national level for several years.






    Sarah Collins co – facilitator of “Building your own campaign” 

    Sarah Collins is a Policy Officer with the STUC. Sarah was previously an organiser with the Better than Zero campaign and a branch secretary with Unison in East Ayrshire. Sarah got involved with trade unions due to her previous campaigning experience with the Stop the War Campaign.  Sarah was also involved in initiating and organising the Radical Independence Campaign.


    Sessions overview

    Knowing how to plan and deliver a campaign is an essential skill for all activists. In this session, you will work through the steps of planning a campaign and then have a go at designing your own campaign for an issue you are passionate about. We will look at different campaigning techniques, as well as discussing some real-life examples of successful campaigns.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Building a good level of understanding of the steps needed to launch a campaign, planning skills, building campaigning strategies and tactics,

    More on STUC

    They have been at the forefront of Scottish political and civil life for over 120 years. Campaigning organisation which brings together workers, their families, and their communities to fight for changes we want to see in society. The focus in 2018 is on the changing nature of the labour market and precarious forms of employment. Our overarching aim is to promote trade unionism, equality, and social justice. The STUC has a long and proud history of supporting the CND.


    Shona McAlpine Facilitator of “Lobbying & working with elected represenatives” 

    Currently a Secondary School Computing Science Teacher Shona has a long and demonstrated history of working in the government and Scottish politics. She worked for over 5 years as the Office Manager for Humza Yousaf MSP and has extensive anti austerity & anti war campaigning experience.

    Sessions overview

    Her session will give an overview on how parliamentarians work and how best to get your campaigns and messages across for them do deliver meaningful change. Session packed with tips, examples and ideas.

    Skills aiming to develop

    Increase knowledge of legislative processes, procedures, rules and calendars. Building a understanding of UK’s and Scotland’s political system. Enhance lobbying strategies and tactics.


    Youth Peace Academy Photographer + Photography exhibition – Gareth King

    Gareth is an award-winning photographer based in Perth, Scotland, Gareth’s photography work has been exhibited internationally since graduating with a BA Degree in Professional Photography from Greys School of Art, Aberdeen. His photography is grounded in the tradition of documentary visual story telling focusing on creating awareness and understanding across cultures, communities and countries, using photography as a tool to tell stories showing our
    commonalities rather than differences in a world that seems more polarised than ever.

    In 2017 Gareth documented the months on Faslane Peace Camp in it’s 35 th year leading up to a visit from Reiko Yamada, a survivor of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima in WW2. Reiko Yamada and Midori Yamada together with their translator and fellow anti nuclear activist Shigeo Kobayashi a member of Japanese Against Nuclear (JAN) visited the peace camp along with members of the Scottish Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (SCND) on 30.03.2017. The visit coincided with with the UN negotiations for a global ban on nuclear weapons treaty on 27.03.2017 – the UK, USA and France did not attend.


    Youth Peace Academy Film Maker – Patrick Rooney

    Patrick Rooney (DEAR FRIEND Films) is a filmmaker who has experience on numerous productions, as well as a keen interest in nuclear peace campaigning. He is particularly interested in the genre of documentary and will be creating a short film of the event”.




    Anne McLaughlin Facilitator of “Fundraising”

    Anne  worked in fundraising and event management for over 12 years. She did this in a variety of settings from the corporate sector to the voluntary sector and from running a local charity and events venue to raising funds for political activity and campaigns. She has been a political activist for more than three decades and this year marks 30 years of activism within the SNP. She is a former MP (2015-2017) and former MSP (2009-2011) and currently trains people in public speaking, leadership and political engagement.

  • Here are some of the presentations and resources we gathered from our speakers. These are free for personal use & not to be reproduced.

    Hiroshima Survivor message Ieshima Masashi

    Alison Page 2018 Peace Academy SCND – Presentation Skills  ( for personal use only and not to be reproduced)

    ICAN session handout

    Fact checking presentation

    Peace Academy 2018 – Lobbying

    Nuclear Morality Flowchart

    NMFlowchart Notes

    Moral Arguments in Campaigning

    Humanity, Morality, Legality1 (1)

    NUJ code of conduct for journalists

    press release type

    Message from Hibakusha Survivor Masashi Ieshima

    Recorded speech of Hibakusha Survivor Masashi Ieshima

    Politicians session recorded