REALIZE RADICALIZATION - A WINNIPEG BASED YOUTH GROUP
Realize Radicalization is a Winnipeg based student-led initiative dedicated to countering radicalization to violent extremism in Manitoba. The group was founded in October 2019 by five UWinnipeg students after they learned about ISIS terrorist Aaron Driver and neo-Nazi extremist Patrik Mathews, two Winnipeg locals who were radicalized toward violent extremism. The five students decided there was a need for an initiative in Manitoba dedicated to Combatting Violent Extremism (CVE) through awareness creation, prevention, intervention, and research on the topic of how individuals are exploited and recruited by violent extremist organizations.
Founded in 2019 through the support of Peer to Peer Facebook global digital challenge, this group is bringing the topic of radicalization to the forefront and given the opportunity it presented a project in February 2020.
Our objective is to Combat Violent Extremism in Manitoba through utilizing a community-based approach in partnership with government, administrators, educators, and researchers all working together to implement a successful strategy for the prevention of radicalization toward violent extremism in our society.
Realize Radicalization employs the use of presentations to provide Manitobans with the information to understand how extremist organizations target, exploit, and recruit individuals.
Build a national network of CVE professionals dedicated to the prevention and intervention of radicalization toward violent extremism in Canada
CRRIC is proud to host Realize Radicalization
Check the group’s activities at https://realizeradicalization.org/
Here are the links for the Webinars RR conducted in 2020-2021.
1) Get Real Podcast #4: Dougald Lamont
October 2nd, 2020.
2) Get Real Podcast #5: Brad Galloway
November 19, 2020
3) Get Real Podcast #6: Marc-Andre Argentino
January 24, 2021
4) Get Real Podcast #7: Amarnath Amarasingam
March 10, 2021
5) Get Real Podcast #8: David Jones
March 24, 2021
6) Get Real Podcast #9: Brandon Rigato
April 5, 2021.
Realize Radicalization was created in 2019 as the University of Winnipeg’s entry for the Peer-to-Peer Facebook Global Digital Challenge – An international challenge among universities to develop an awareness project that targets extremism and hate speech in which Realize Radicalization finished in the top ten out among forty universities. Since 2007, there have been three instances of extremism leading to terrorist activity from Winnipeggers, with the most recent being Patrik Mathews, the Manitoban Canadian Forces reservist who was an active member of neo-Nazi terrorist organization The Base. Mathews was attempting to recruit a Winnipeg-based terror cell before his story went public after the publication of a Winnipeg Free Press article that identified Mathews. Realize Radicalization was developed because no community-based group dedicated to radicalization and extremism awareness or countering violent extremism existed in Winnipeg before the creation of Realize Radicalization.
Since 2019, Realize Radicalization has been involved in developing community awareness within Winnipeg related to the topics of radicalization and violent extremism, the group provides presentations to youth ranging from the ages of 13 – 27. The presentations examine how violent extremist groups target, exploit, and recruit vulnerable individuals through a variety of methods including the internet. Realize Radicalization works to create awareness of this phenomenon and provide attendees with the tools to grasp how extremist groups utilize grievances and misinformation to gain supporters for their violent causes.
Under the parameters of the CRRIC-led project, Realize Radicalization will handle the implementation of the educational workshops to instruct educators on how to approach the topic and facilitate conversations regarding extremism with their students. The Realize Radicalization members who will partake in the project are Caiden Lee, Aluk Fontaine-Richardson, and Brennen Carlson. Below is a list of activities the group has been involved with starting in 2019.