Spain

REACT - Rapid Expert Assistance and Cooperation Teams for Conflict Prevention, Crisis Management, and post-Conflict Rehabilitation (REACT + HEAT)

SUMMARY

Helsinki España was created in 1992 to advance the principles related to the human dimension of the Helsinki Final Act of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Our mission is to promote the respect and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, at both national and international levels. We achieve this by developing specialized, high-quality education and training programmes on issues intersecting human rights, conflict prevention, peace-building, and development. Our flagship international programme is REACT.

REACT is an intensive five-week (220h) in-person training on Conflict Prevention, Crisis Management, and post-Conflict Rehabilitation. It is imparted by high-profile experts and trainers from international and public institutions – including numerous UN agencies; the OSCE, EU, NATO, and ICRC; and Spain’s ministries of Defense and Foreign Affairs – and seeks to prepare selected candidates with the skills and competencies required to deploy in international field operations.

The course represents an opportunity for both career development as well as career transition, and is the only training programme of its kind that takes place in Spain.

The next REACT edition will take place from May 30th to July 1st, 2022. Registration is now closed. The deadline to apply for visa-free candidates was 1st of May, 2022.

For more information about REACT 2023 and how to apply, see below or contact us at: iucpm@helsinkiespana.org

ORIGINS

REACT was launched in 2003 by proposal from the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation with the support of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Over the past 19 years, Helsinki España has successfully organized 25 REACT editions, training over 500 professionals from 70+ countries (including during COVID-19). Today, our REACT alumni (the majority of whom are women) are deployed in 85+ countries; operate virtually within all sectors (public, private, NGO) and at all levels (from entry-level to senior management); and represent one of Spain's main contributions to supporting human-centered international peace and security efforts.

OBJECTIVES

  • Equip participants with the skills and knowledge required to understand and analyze the main threats to international peace and security, the circumstances in which armed conflicts arise, and their key actors and impact on civilians.
  • Improve participants’ skills in conflict prevention, management, and resolution, as well as the protection of civilians in armed conflict.
  • Strengthen the competence and confidence of participants to effectively deal with emergency and critical situations, as would be the case when working in peace missions.

PARTICIPATING INSTITUTIONS

  • United Nations, UN
  • Organization for the Security and Cooperation in Europe, OSCE
  • North Atlantic Treaty Organization, NATO
  • Spanish Ministries of Defence and Foreign Affairs
  • International Committee of the Red Cross, ICRC

CONTENTS

MODULE I: Conflict Prevention and Peacebuilding: conceptual framework

  • Peace and conflict analysis
  • Conflict prevention
  • Conflict management
  • Conflict resolution
  • Peacebuilding

MODULE II: International Law: Comprehensive overview

  • Public International Law: basic concepts
  • International Human Rights Law
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • International Criminal Law

MODULE III: Protection of Civilians

  • Protection of civilians in armed conflict
  • Women, Peace and Security. Gender in Operations
  • Children and Armed Conflict
  • Refugees and internally displaced people

MODULE IV: Conflicts and current threats to international peace and security

  • Asia: Afghanistan, North Korea and Myanmar
  • Middle East: Israel-Palestine, Iraq, Syria and Yemen
  • Sub-Saharan Africa: CAR, DRC, Mali and South Sudan
  • Maghreb: Libya and Western Sahara
  • Eastern Europe and Caucasus: Ukraine and Kosovo
  • Latin America: Colombia and Venezuela
  • Radicalization, terrorism and violent extremism
  • Transnational organized crime
  • Disarmament and Non-Proliferation
  • Hybrid threats
  • Climate change

MODULE V: Key actors and their contribution to international peace and security

  • United Nations, Peace and Security Pillar
  • European Union, Common Security and Defense Policy
  • Organization for the Security and Cooperation in Europe, OSCE
  • African Union, Common African Defense and Security Policy
  • North Atlantic Treaty Organization, NATO
  • The role of Civil Society

MODULE VI: Tools for sustainable peace

  • Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration of ex-combatants (DDR)
  • Security Sector Reform (SSR)
  • Accountability and transitional justice
  • Democracy and Rule of Law
  • Elections in peacebuilding
  • The role of media in peace and conflict

MODULE VII: Peacebuilding skills and competencies

  • Awareness of threats and risks. Personal security
  • Safety and security procedures for vehicle movement
  • Kidnapping and hostage survival
  • Weapons, mines, improvised explosive devices and unexploded ordnances
  • Protection of classified and sensitive information
  • First aid in hostile environments
  • Orientation and communications in the field
  • 4x4 off road driving
  • Working with interpreters
  • Stress management
  • Negotiation and multicultural communication
  • Chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense
  • Addressing media
  • Leadership

HOSTILE ENVIRONMENT AWARENESS TRAINING (HEAT)

As part of the REACT programme, students will undergo a complete five-day HEAT training, in which participants will learn how to deal effectively with risk-associated and emergency/critical situations while deployed in mission.

FACULTY

REACT teaching staff are high-profile trainers and experts from international organizations, diplomats and civil servants, military personnel, police officers, specialists from humanitarian NGOs, independent consultants, and university professors.

Fee information

The total REACT course fee is 4.950 €.

There are a limited number of partial scholarships available, which cover up to 35% of the course fee. Scholarships are awarded based on the profile and needs of each candidate, on a first-come, first-served basis. Therefore, early applications are strongly encouraged.

The fee includes the following services:

* Comprehensive five-week REACT course (220h total, 8h/day)

* Complete five-day Hostile Environment Awareness Training (HEAT)

* Organized local transport (Madrid-El Albir-Los Ángeles-Madrid)

* Personal mentoring focused on professional development, networking opportunities with participating organizations, and direct access to UNV recruiters

* Administrative, logistic, accommodation and visa-related support

* 550€ registration fee (non-refundable)

* All course materials

* Official diploma

*** Meals and accommodation costs are NOT included. Applicants are also responsible for their visa-related costs.

*** Candidates who wish to be considered for our scholarship scheme should enclose proof of their annual income and employment status. Documents should be translated into English or Spanish.

How to register

If you would like to apply for REACT 2023, please send us a copy of the following documents:

  • REACT Registration Form (available here)
  • Motivation Letter
  • CV
  • Recent digital photo, passport size
  • Copy of passport
  • Proof of highest educational level achieved and copy of academic transcript
  • Two letters of recommendation on letterhead. They should include date and stamp/signature of the entity/person writing the letter.
  • ORIGINALS MUST be sent by post. It is possible to send them in advance via email. However, it will still be necessary to send the originals as well.
  • English language certificate. In case you do not have one, please notify us and we will arrange a brief telephone interview.
  • If you wish to apply for a partial scholarship, please provide a document demonstrating your annual income and employment status (translated into English or Spanish as necessary).

Applications and scholarships will be considered in order of arrival until all places are filled. Therefore, interested candidates are strongly encouraged to prepare and submit their applications as early as possible.

All application documents should be sent to: iucpm@helsinkiespana.org

The application period for REACT 2023 is already open.

Application deadline: TBD

Incomplete applications will NOT be considered.