Annually, the Intercultural Innovation Hub provides backing to grassroots initiatives that actively foster intercultural dialogue and understanding, thereby making valuable contributions to peace, cultural diversity, and the establishment of more inclusive societies.
This year, the ceremony took place in Berlin and was presided over by Mr. Miguel Angel Moratinos, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for UNAOC, alongside Ms. Ilka Horstmeier, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG People and Real Estate, Labor Relations Director. The ceremony in Berlin was led and moderated by Dr. Mandeep Rai, author of The Value Compass.
The IIH is a longstanding collaboration between the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the BMW Group, with support from Accenture. The honored organizations gain valuable access to networks, funding opportunities, and a comprehensive 12-month training program aimed at enhancing their internal capabilities. They also receive professional mentoring from experienced coaches.
This year, the Intercultural Innovation Hub 2023 recipients were:
- Fundación Barranquilla+20 (Colombia) – Women for Climate Justice
- Fundacion Ixcanul (Guatemala) – Itinerant Traveling Cinema
- inspire (Indonesia) – Pledge United
- Corn Diferenças (Brazil) – Literature in Multiple Accessible Formats
- Oasis ‘Reach For Your Dreams’ (South Africa) – Community Street Football/Netball
- SWAN’s initiative (Germany) – More Leylas in Leadership
- Tech2Peace (Israel) – A New Reality: Israelis and Palestinians Innovating Together
- Programa Adopte un Talento / PAUTA (Mexico) – Empowering Girls and Adolescent Girls from Vulnerable Groups and Communities in Mexico with Science
- Wasel for Awareness and Education (Jordan) – Shabbek Wa Bader
- WelcomeAustralia (Australia) – Welcoming Cities
Each one of the recipients had a unique story to tell which was equally empowering and inspirational. The diversity aspect was also in full display with people coming from around the world to support this cause. For example, “Pledge United” is an organization dedicated to addressing gender-based violence from an early age through the power of football. Their objective is to educate and challenge existing gender biases and attitudes among young boys. The initiative implements an 8-week program that combines football and gameplay with lessons on women’s rights and gender issues. By doing so, the project aims to establish secure environments for women, eradicate gender inequalities, and foster greater unity within societies.
Another recipient was “Tech2Peace” which adopts a unique approach to peacebuilding by organizing seminars that offer technical and entrepreneurial training in conjunction with intercultural and interfaith dialogue. From Brazil came “Mais Diferenças” which strives to ensure inclusive reading experiences for individuals of all abilities. Guided by the principles of universal design and accessibility, this project integrates various elements such as text, audio narratives, sign language animation, and other features.
The partnership between the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and the BMW Group started in 2011. There were 71 organizations selected so far reaching 118 countries. Over 6 million beneficiaries were impacted by this initiative.