MotherSchools Macedonia Participant

Women without Borders translates research into action through community-based strategies that combine theory and grassroots-level fieldwork. Women without Borders focuses on Preventing Violent Extremism, Capacity Building, Gender Based Violence, Female Leadership, and Intercultural Dialogue.

The organisation’s core focus is its pioneering ‘MotherSchools: Parenting for Peace’ Model, which has been strengthening local, national, and global security for over a decade. This bottom-up security approach positions civil society to address the dangers of extremism while fostering dialogue between local stakeholders and global decision-makers. MotherSchools have engaged over two thousand mothers in twelve countries across Western and Eastern Europe, South and Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and Sub-Saharan Africa.

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MotherSchools Explained

4:32 mins.

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MotherSchools Macedonia Ambassador

3:19 mins.

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MotherSchools Macedonia Teacher

3:08 mins.

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MotherSchools Macedonia Participant

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Drenusha talks about the prevalence of the taboo topic of extremism in her community, and how through the MotherSchools she developed the skills and self-confidence to break the silence surrounding the issue. As a ‘Buddy’ of the MotherCircles sustainability programme, Drenusha is currently training to bring the philosophy and lessons of the MotherSchools Model deeper into her community.

MotherSchools Macedonia Participant’s message to mothers out there:

‘Not talking about the issues doesn’t protect your families. You are the one who is going to make changes. First of all in your families, then to the society, then to the whole world.’

MotherSchools Explained

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Our founder and executive director Edit Schlaffer and team member Laura Kropiunigg explain the philosophy of the ‘MotherSchools: Parenting for Peace’ Model and offer insight into the curriculum. The film provides background on the various phases of the implementation process, includes interviews with MotherSchools Austria Teachers, and features a recent MotherSchools graduation ceremony in Vienna.

Edit Schlaffer on the MotherSchools philosophy:

‘All of us have to be Women without Borders. We have to be on a mission to bring what is happening at the grassroots—in real lives—to the attention of the world.’

MotherSchools Macedonia Ambassador

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Meral talks about the long process of building trust in communities impacted by radicalisation, and how the MotherSchools have created a safe space for concerned and affected women to share their stories and become agents of change. As Macedonia’s MotherSchools Ambassador, Meral spreads awareness of the Model in Europe and encourages mothers across the globe to recognise their potential and responsibility to protect their children and safeguard their communities.

MotherSchools Macedonia Ambassador:

‘We are the frontline when it comes to combatting radicalisation and extremism; we are the voice as women and as mothers who will finally make a change …. You don’t have to be at home and thinking that you didn’t have a chance to do something about protecting your children.’

MotherSchools Macedonia Teacher

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Sabina talks about her personal experience with radical expression, the stigma associated with the topic, and how a mother’s understanding of family structures and the developmental stages in adolescence is the basis for preventing her children from going down the wrong path. As a MotherSchools Teacher, Sabina educates and empowers other mothers through the curriculum while drawing on her expertise as a professional psychologist.

MotherSchools Macedonia Teacher:

‘We as mothers, looking at the threats in our community, we have decided to take a more active role in tackling the issue. As mothers, we have understood that we need the tools, we need the understanding about this subject.’