Ahtisaari Days

The Ahtisaari Days are held throughout Finland every year. The aim is to help young people learn and practice conflict-solving, peace mediation and reconciliation. After all, these skills are essential everywhere, from the schoolyard to the highest levels of international politics.

Welcome to peace making

The Ahtisaari Days are held every year, with the aim of bringing conflict resolution to every school. Finland has a long tradition of conflict resolution. Even in playschool (kindergarten), kids learn to get along and solve their arguments peacefully and fairly. And in the wider world, Finnish conflict resolution has an important role in solving the most serious conflicts in many places.

The Ahtisaari Days are named after Martti Ahtisaari, a politician and diplomat who was President of Finland from 1994 to 2000. Mr. Ahtisaari won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2008 for his long life of working for peace throughout the world. The goal of the Ahtisaari Days is to help young people learn more about conflict resolution and solving arguments. They learn about the importance of peace and non-violence – at school, at home, everywhere.

Right now there are many severe crises facing the world. All of these have been caused by violent conflicts, and by failed attempts to solve these conflicts. For example, around the world over 60 million people have been driven from their homes and are now refugees. This is more than in 1945, at the end of the Second World War.

The Crisis Management Initiative (CMI) is a conflict resolution organization that Mr. Ahtisaari set up in 2000, after he stepped down as President. With the Ahtisaari days, CMI invites teachers and students to take practical steps to promote peace. Peace matters always and everywhere – at school, at home, at your hobbies, and anywhere you go. Anyone can make peace, and everyone should. Learning how to make peace makes it far easier to get along with others, no matter what age you are or what you do. The Ahtisaari Days help you to learn these skills through a set of simulations we’ve put together. The simulations are intended for students at middle school (junior high) and high school.

The Ahtisaari Days are held in early November, on or around Saint Martin’s Day (the 11th of November), and can be held throughout that week at schools all over Finland. The materials can of course be used at any time!

CMI holds the Ahtisaari Days in cooperation with the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

The Ahtisaari Days bring conflict resolution to all Finnish schools.

Peacemaking and negotiation are vital life skills

Finnish schools have been at the centre of the Ahtisaari Days from the start. The events promote peace and effective conflict resolution among kids and teens.

Conflict resolution is an important part of Finland’s foreign policy, but it is just as important in Finland too – in everyday life, and at every level. For this reason, the Ahtisaari Days aim to introduce Finnish youth to the ways in which organizations like CMI work to solve violent conflicts and promote peace everywhere.

CMI organizes the Ahtisaari Days in cooperation with the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

In 2019, Ahtisaari Days were held in Jyväskylä on November 14th. In 2020, Ahtisaari Days will be held in Lappeenranta.