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Global Hope Coalition to Honor Those on Frontlines Against Extremism and Intolerance at UNGA 2019

During UNGA 2019, Global Hope Coalition to Honor Frontline Stakeholders Fighting Extremism, Hate Speech and Cultural Property Trafficking

Leaders and activists to address the resurgence of terror groups in the Sahel and the LevantTribute to Italian Carabinieri TPC for Crackdown on Cultural Heritage Trafficking

New York – September 25, 2019

At 6:30 PM on Thursday, September 26, 2019, the Global Hope Coalition, a network of four nonprofit foundations in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa dedicated to identifying and empowering heroes and local community activists against violent extremism and intolerance, will hold its annual awards ceremony at the Neue Galerie New York.

Taking place on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly’s 74th session, the event will pay tribute to leaders in the Sahel and the Levant for their stance against the rising menace of ISIS-affiliated terror groups in those regions.

The highlight of the evening will be the 2019 Hero Awards presented to the Italian Carabinieri Unit for Protection of Cultural Heritage (“Carabinieri TCP”), and four women and men for their courageous stance and innovative solutions to the threats posed by jihadi extremism, xenophobic intolerance, and hate speech.

The event marks the fourth consecutive annual event of the Global Hope Coalition during UNGA’s opening week. The Presidents and Prime Ministers of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Greece, Iraq, Niger, Mali, and Tunisia have been among the honorees of Coalition events in previous years.

The 2019 Heroes of the Global Hope Coalition are: Waleed El-Ansary (Egypt), Adama Dieng (Senegal), Leah Pisar (USA), Bushra Qadeem Hyder (Pakistan) and Enver Yucel (Turkey).

The Global Hope Coalition was launched in September 2016 in New York by a group of former Heads of State, Nobel Prize laureates, leaders of international organizations, intellectuals and philanthropists to convene prominent influencers around a common goal: identifying and empowering frontline stakeholders and local activists fighting extremism, preaching tolerance and fostering diverse and inclusive societies.

“It’s time to recognize the key contribution and indispensable role being played by local Heroes, the men and women who often take risks to oppose extremism, protect cultural heritage, and promote harmonious relations in their communities and neighborhoods around the world,” said Deborah Lehr, President of Global Hope Coalition USA. “We owe it to these Heroes to empower them through better training, better networking, greater capacity building, and letting the world know about their daily acts of courage and sacrifice.”

In addition to its awards program, the Global Hope Coalition serves as a global convener and resource for individuals and groups engaged in promoting cross-cultural dialogue, peace, and tolerance. Serving as a link between countries, organizations, and people, the Coalition facilitates partnerships with stakeholders around the globe to increase heroes’ capacity, expand their reach, and extend their capabilities on the ground in each of their countries.

“The exposure that being declared a Global Hope Hero gave my organization was a huge boost,” said Dr. Waheed Arian, director of TeleHeal, a London-based nonprofit organization that mobilizes volunteer physicians in the UK to advise local doctors working in conflict zones through Skype. “Global Hope helped us increase our impact on the ground, and form a partnership with the World Health Organization.” Arian arrived in the UK as a teenage refugee from Afghanistan.

“No amount of high-level government decisions, international coordination, and billion-dollar programs will be able to defeat the scourge of our times, violent extremism in all its manifestations, without the crucial contribution of the frontline activist. We are trying to create partnerships and mobilize resources that can help shift the balance of power in these communities,” said Abe Radkin, the Coalition’s international coordinator.



Mariana Todorova

347 833 8686 

About the 2019 Heroes of the Global Campaign Against Extremism and Intolerance

The Italian Carabinieri Department for Protection of Cultural Heritage

The Italian Carabinieri Department for the Protection of Cultural Heritage (TPC) supports international police cooperation via INTERPOL and UNESCO to stop the illicit trafficking of cultural property. Founded in 1969, the operational department consists of three sections, respectively focusing on Archaeology, Antique, Modern Art and Counterfeiting. The Italian Carabinieri Department for Protection of Cultural Heritage is considered a worldwide leader in its field and setting international benchmarks.

Waleed El-Ansary

Dr. Waleed El-Ansary is the Helal, Hisham and Laila Edris El-Swedey University Chair in Islamic Studies at Xavier University, where he teaches courses on comparative religion, Islamic studies, and religion and science. His research focuses on the intersection of religion, science and economics. He has authored numerous books, and was a principal contributor to the interfaith training guide for young theologians, “Know the Religion of Thy Neighbor”, a concept that is challenging age-old practices in religious training centers.

Adama Dieng

Adama Dieng is Under-Secretary General of the United Nations and Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide. Prior to this position he served as Registrar of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Adama has been a tireless campaigner for human rights and dignity, and he is now leading the UN efforts to fight hate speech.

Leah Pisar

In recognizing Leah Pisar, the GHC pays tribute to the international NGO that she has led since 2017, Project Aladdin. Launched in 2009 at UNESCO by Jacques Chirac, King Mohammed VI of Morocco, Gerhard Schroeder, then President Abdoualye Wade of Senegal, Prince Hassan of Jordan, and Simone Veil, Project Aladdin has been a trailblazer in using the lessons of history to promote better relations among faiths and communities. Leah Pisar is a director of the French-American Foundation, the French Institute Alliance Française, the Harriman Foreign Service Fellowship, and the Franco-American Fulbright Commission.

Enver Yucel

Enver Yucel is Chairman of the Executive Board of BAU, one of the largest educational groups in the world that operates an expansive network of universities and schools in eight countries. He has won numerous awards for his emphasis on quality education for all, and the importance that his institutions attach to global citizenship education and teaching the universal values of respect, diversity and openness.

Bushra Qadeem Hyder

Bushra Hyder was a schoolteacher and principal in Pakistan’s most remote and volatile region along the border of Afghanistan—Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. She experienced first-hand the effects of increasing extremist violence in her region, and decided that she had to do something about it. She became a peace educator and has inspired teachers and educators across Pakistan with her devotion, compassion and efficiency. Hyder established and directs her own high school that teaches students about other religions and cultures. Hyder has conducted trainings with young women on leadership, conflict transformation, peacebuilding, and microenterprise, and has worked with local government and religious officials to implement peace curricula in schools throughout the region.

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