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Anna Lindh Foundation and the Club de Madrid join forces to support the next generation of leaders in building a new narrative against extremism

The partnership programme will involve experienced leaders of the Club de Madrid and Youth Ambassadors for Dialogue from the Anna Lindh Foundation’s regional network

MADRID (27 OCTOBER 2015) – The Anna Lindh Foundation launched today a new framework of cooperation with the “Club de Madrid”, the world’s largest group of democratic former presidents and prime ministers dedicated to using their experience to address global challenges.

The cooperation will centre on building a dynamic partnership and mentoring programme involving experienced leaders of the World Alliance-Club de Madrid and Youth Ambassadors for Dialogue from the Anna Lindh Foundation’s regional network. The partners will also establish a strategic focus on empowering youth leaders across the Mediterranean to build a “bottom-up” narrative of shared values and culture of debate in the face of rising intolerance.

The cooperation framework was announced on the occasion of the Policy Dialogue “Madrid+10” on Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism, which brought together more than 200 political leaders, policy-makers and grass-route initiatives. As the central institution for intercultural dialogue in the Mediterranean, the Anna Lindh Foundation was invited to lead the “Madrid+10” strategic debate on the role of youth and educators in countering extremism, presenting insights from its latest “Report on Intercultural Trends” and flag-ship debate programme “Young Arab Voices”.

A first phase of action will now be launched by the Club de Madrid and Anna Lindh Foundation, with the support of the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (“Debate to Action”) and centred on the following components:

  • launching a region-wide programme of high-level policy dialogues in association with “Young Arab Voices”, the flag-ship debate programme of the Anna Lindh Foundation and British Council, and in partnership with regional education and media networks.
  • roll-out of a regional capacity-building and national cascade training focused on enhanced communication and advocacy skills for youth leaders, developed in association with Common Purpose International and Club de Madrid members.
  • supporting the “Madrid+10” online platform which aims to facilitate knowledge sharing and gather support for the Global Consensus on how to confront and prevent radicalisation, and mapping existing, high-impact social media initiatives.
  • transforming new research on the role of youth debate and network-building in countering-extremism, developed with Chatham House and In Place of War (IPOW), into policy advocacy outputs to be championed by world leaders.
  • creating a permanent mentoring platform and process whereby youth leaders from across the Mediterranean can benefit from expose to former world leaders and experience of those mentors when it comes to leading social change. 
  • supporting the development of a regional communication and advocacy campaign on the positive role of debate in counter-extremism (“Debate, Not Hate”) in partnership with youth networks of UNESCO, Council of Europe and the Anna Lindh Foundation.

This first phase of action is also framed by the overarching values the Anna Lindh Foundation and Club de Madrid aim to promote through their longer-term collaboration when it comes to building open and pluralistic societies as well as supporting the active participation of civil society and youth.

For further information, contact:

Paul Walton, Anna Lindh Foundation Headquarters (Alexandria) / Head of The Executive (

Maram Anbar, Club de Madrid Secretariat (Madrid) / Senior Program Officer (