Unite the region through knowledge.

Aileen Getty School of Citizen Journalism

YaLa Peace Institute in Honor of Nelson Mandela

The MENA Leaders for Change Program

Advisory Board

Citizen Journalism

The YaLa Academy’s Aileen Getty School of Citizen Journalism brings together leading journalists and new media experts to train 100 Middle Eastern youth per semester in basic journalism techniques, photo- and video-journalism and mobile activism. Building off a program launched in 2014 in partnership with the U.S. Institute of Peace, the program is a unique online program focused on new media communication and peacebuilding. In a region where media is too often a tool for nationalism, division and fear, YaLa citizen journalists will be empowered to tell a different kind of Middle Eastern story.

YaLa Academy also works in partnership with our sister movement – YaLa Africa – both to bring localized curricula of our training programs to African students, as well as to bring the experience and know-how of African experts to the young generation of the Middle East.

Check out YaLa’s first documentary produced by the School, which explores what Israeli and Palestinian youth can learn from Rwanda’s forgiveness, reconciliation experiences! In “Tel Aviv-Ramallah-Kigali” YaLa Citizen Journalists Sarah and Hamze embark on a life-changing journey of understanding and peace-building through youth empowerment, join them by clicking here!

Applications are now being accepted for the 2016 program, click here to read more about the program, or  here to apply.

The YaLa
Peace Institute

In Honor of Nelson Mandela

The YaLa Peace Institute in Honor of Nelson Mandela is a ground-breaking peace studies program to supply the young leaders of the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) region with the necessary tools to create a future of self-sustaining and durable peace.

Students learn online directly from the men and women who led processes of peace negotiation, human rights, transitional justice, peacebuilding and reconciliation in South Africa, Rwanda, Ireland, the Balkans and the Middle East (click here for the list). Find out more by clicking here for the Overview or clicking here for the FAQs and sign up below for the next cycle, starting in October 2015!

Application Process

Detailed online application including 4 short essay questions

The MENA Leaders for
Change Program

The MENA Leaders for Change Program, sponsored by the U.S. State Department.  This intensive program for emerging peace leaders consisted of online training and face-to-face workshops in collaboration with the US Institute of Peace, Vanderbilt University and the Harvard Program on Negotiation. Over the course of two years (four semesters), a total of 330 young leaders from the MENA region participated in the program:

  • 120 Israelis
  • 120 Palestinians
  • 90 MENA region

The top 160 students participated in the two year-end workshops held in Jordan in 2013 and 2014 and are now pursuing their projects and activism with the help of seed funding, mentorship opportunities, and a network of supporters including the US State Department Alumni Program. For more, please Click Here.









Application Process

Detailed application including 4 short essay questions
Reviewed/scored by 2 different staff members
Interviews via phone/skype