Chanan Development Association (CDA) was formed by a group of young activists as a theatre group in 2004. The mission of CDA is to “improve the status of youth, particularly young women, enabling them to equally and actively participate in all spheres of life without any biases of gender, religion, class etc for the creation of a healthy, just, democratic, non-violent and peaceful society”.
Chanan Development Association (CDA), has many different initiatives for promoting peace in Pakistan, including: Interfaith Dialogues for PEACE, Cricket for PEACE, Youth & Culture of PEACE, and using Composite Heritage as an instrument of PEACE.
CDA also initiated the National YOUTH-PEACE campaign with the mission to create a culture of equality, acceptability and tolerance among young people in order to help establish a just, democratic, non-violent, peaceful and harmonious society. CDA has reached more than 2,000 young people directly and some 10,000 young people indirectly from all the five provincial capitals: Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Quetta and Gilgit.
CDA also provided opportunities for these young people to interact and explore other’s religion/culture values, beliefs and concepts of peace through exposure visits in their own provinces as well as inter-provincial exchange visits. As part of the project CDA hosts National Youth PEACE Festival's, which are Pakistan’s largest gatherings of young people in support of peace.
CDA believes that young people can play a pivotal role in bringing peace to society and reduce extremism in Pakistan, and the wider region. For this, their active participation should be ensured and their exposure to the composite and cultural heritage and religious/cultural values of other groups in society must be enhanced.