By Peaceful Means has a mission to interrupt physical and structural violence by empowering youth through peace education, advocacy, and employment.
In 2007, the Director of the The Cosby Center at St. Frances Community Center, Ralph E. Moore Jr., and the Assistant Director at the time, Nawal Rajeh, decided to run a one-week summer program with a specific goal in mind. They modeled their idea off of a camp in Pittsburgh, PA being run by the Sisters of St. Joseph that was started as a response to escalating violence in a post September 11th world. This type of summer program is known as a Peace Camp because of its emphasis teaching the principles of nonviolence.
Moore and Rajeh expanded the one-week model into a 6-week model for children ages 5-12. Each week focused on a different peace hero. The children read books, completed art projects, learned songs, and went on field trips related to that week’s peace hero, a real-world figure who exemplified the ideas being explored at the camp.
Each year since, the curriculum for the camp has expanded and changed to meet the needs of the community and the growing field of peace education. In 2010, Moore named the camp after co-founder Nawal Rajeh for her dedication and commitment to the program.
In 2013, Rajeh founded By Peaceful Means, in order to expand peacebuilding and conflict resolution programs for the D.C., Maryland and Virginia community. In addition to running peace camp, By Peaceful Means offers conflict resolution trainings for social justice organizations and runs a community organizing program for D.C. high school students.
Rajeh is joined by conflict practitioners, peacebuilders, artists, community organizers, attorneys, and others dedicated to social change, youth empowerment and community progress.