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Natural Awakenings Westchester / Putnam / Dutchess New York

Alternatives to Violence Project Hosts Workshop in Scarsdale: August 10 to 12

Fred Feucht

The Alternatives to Violence Project is looking for peacemakers who want to become AVP conflict resolution workshop facilitators. “We are working to create peace in our communities and in our prisons,” says Fred Feucht, who has been the coordinator for the AVP program in Westchester for 35 years. Starting with one conflict resolution workshop in Dutchess County in 1975, AVP has spread by word of mouth to 30 U.S. states and 55 countries.

There are no special qualifications for becoming an AVP facilitator, Feucht says. New facilitators must take three weekend workshops: Basic Conflict Resolution, Advanced Conflict Resolution and Training for Facilitators. The first step is to register for an AVP Basic Workshop. The next one will be held August 10 to 12, at Scarsdale Quaker Meetinghouse, located at 133 Popham Road in Scarsdale. 

The AVP program may be one of the world’s best-kept secrets, Feucht says. “Today there are workshops in Rwanda, with perpetrators of the genocide and families of victims of the genocide in the same workshop. There are also workshops in the Kurdish area of Iraq, with Kurds, Sunis and Yazitis in the same workshop. If AVP can work in Iraq, it can work anywhere.”

Last year, AVP in Westchester provided 58 conflict resolution workshops at Sing Sing and Otisville Men’s Prisons and Bedford Hills Women's Prison, as well as 12 workshops for community groups. This year, AVP is expanding its local reach even further.

“Beginning in 2018, we are providing workshops in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Garner Men's Prison in Connecticut. We need more facilitators to meet this need,” Feucht says.

The August 10-12 workshop will include sessions Friday from 7 to 10 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. (lunch and supper included); and Sunday from 1 to 8:30 p.m. (supper included).

The fee for the workshop is $40 to $100, depending on income. “Any contribution beyond $40 will help to provide scholarship assistance to those who need it,” Feucht says.

To reserve a space, contact Fred Feucht at 203.405.6103 or [email protected]. Make checks payable to AVP and mail to Feucht at 522A Heritage Village, Southbury, CT, 06488.

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