“God shall judge between the nations, and shall decide for many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation; neither shall they learn war any more.” (Isaiah 2:4)
Project Ploughshares is an operating division of The Canadian Council of Churches that works with churches, governments and civil society, in Canada and abroad, to advance policies and actions to prevent war and armed violence and build peace.
Project Ploughshares takes its name and its vision from the ancient biblical vision in the Book of Isaiah in which the material and human wealth consumed by military preparations are transformed into resources for human development, thereby removing the roots of war itself.
Project Ploughshares works to advance policies and actions that prevent war and armed violence and build peace. We do this primarily through research and analysis that carefully considers differing points of view. On occasion, we support broader campaigns that further our primary goals. For example, in 2003, Project Ploughshares provided leadership to Canadian churches in their response to the U.S. plans for war on Iraq. Prepare for Peace in Iraq, the January 2003 joint statement of The Canadian Council of Churches, Kairos and Project Ploughshares, was endorsed by 40,000 individuals and groups and was instrumental in helping to keep Canada out of the U.S.-led war. Some other examples of events or campaigns we have helped co-ordinate are: the Global Week of Action Against Gun Violence; Disarming Domestic Violence campaign; and 100 Days of Action on the Arms Trade, which included the Million-Faces Petition, a global online effort to demonstrate public support for a global arms trade treaty.
Our sponsoring churches bring diverse views and approaches to questions of defence and security. In Project Ploughshares they come together in support of policies that reduce reliance on military force in a broad approach to security aimed at enhancing human security. In circumstances where the resort to force is deemed necessary, the military contribution to peace operations must be deployed to support the political settlement of conflict and not as an alternative to this process. This comprehensive approach to security requires attention to the 5Ds of security: development, democracy, disarmament, diplomacy and defence.
Project Ploughshares relies on the annual financial support of thousands of individuals, as well as contributions from national churches, religious orders, local congregations and organizations across Canada. Our annual income in 2015 was $832,896. The source of funds breaks down as follows: donations 72.4 per cent; grants 27.3 per cent; other 0.3 per cent.
We use external marketing companies as a cost-effective way of mailing out our fundraising materials. They have resources and expertise we do not have in-house. The companies work on a fee-for-service basis, not for commission.
In 2015, we spent 13 per cent on fundraising and 10 per cent on administration. We aim to keep the percentage we spend on programs to as close to 80 per cent of our budget as possible. These percentages can vary year to year depending on the sources of our income. The mailings we send to our donors (see previous question), in addition to asking for support, are also important opportunities to provide information about peace and security issues and what we are doing to address these issues, and to build a network of Canadians committed to working for a more peaceful world.
Yes. Ploughshares.ca is a repository of information, including our annual Armed Conflict Reports, which offer detailed reports on specific conflicts worldwide, and many reports, briefings, working papers, articles and links to partner organizations. Learn about the work we do by perusing our site, signing up for our e-newsletter, joining one of our listservs or contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can help immeasurably by promoting Project Ploughshares among your own network of family, friends and colleagues or classmates and within your faith group.
We do our best to accommodate speaking requests. Please contact Tasneem Jamal, Communications and Fundraising Officer, either by email or at +1 519 888-6541 ext. 24306 with details of your event. Please note that except for speaking requests in our local area, we require reimbursement for our travel costs.