Val Liveoak is the coordinator and co-founder of Peacebuilding en Las Américas (PLA) with the Friends Peace Teams (FPT). The program promotes peace and healing in countries where the violent legacy of civil war has added to the continued poverty and injustice that sparked the conflicts. FPT’s programs build on the Quaker experience, combining practical and spiritual aspects of conflict resolution. PLA currently works in El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, and Colombia. Val has also done volunteer work with the Alternatives to Violence Project in Bolivia, Cuba, Mexico, Burundi, Rwanda, Canada, and Kenya.
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Val Liveoak, who became a nonviolent activist in Austin in the early ’70s, has been named a “Woman of Peace” by Womens’ Peacepower Foundation (2009) and Peacemaker of the Year by the Austin Peace and Justice Center (1986). She has chosen to live below the poverty line and work as a volunteer since the early ’90s and currently lives in an “intentional neighborhood” in San Antonio, when she’s in the United States.