The HOPE not hate campaign was founded in 2004 to provide a positive antidote to the politics of hate. 

At that time, the British National Party (BNP) was winning substantial votes and local councillors in our northern towns and traditional anti-racist and anti-fascist campaigns were not having an impact.

HOPE not hate was established to offer a more positive and community-focused way of doing anti-fascism. We prioritised working in communities to town centre demonstrations and we engaged and spoke to local people rather than to ourselves.  By listening, we realised that the far right were tapping into a wider mood of alienation and hardship that needed addressing.

And we have had some amazing success! Across Britain, HOPE not hate has worked tirelessly on the ground with local people to defeat the politics of hate.

Our campaigning has always been backed up by first class research and intelligence. We have exposed the illegal activities of extremist groups, and been able to foil serious plots to commit acts of violence and even terror.

But perhaps more importantly, we have worked proactively to make individuals and communities more resilient to hate 

Since 2010, we have built peaceful and positive resistance to attempts by the English Defence League to divide communities, offered support to and run joint initiatives with Muslim organisations and have campaigned against Islamist extremism.

In May 2013, just days after the murder of Lee Rigby in Woolwich, over 47,000 people signed our ‘We Are The Many’ letter, which spoke out against the EDL’s attempts to whip up anti-Muslim hatred and the Islamist extremists who were behind the murder.

Our community organising work is backed up by ground breaking research and surveys, which allow us to focus our efforts on the areas of the country most vulnerable to hate. In 2011 HOPE not hate commissioned a ground-breaking survey of public opinion which resulted in our first Fear and HOPE report, followed up by further surveys in 2015, 2016 and 2017. 

Following the devastating murder of Jo Cox MP, we ran a national response, focussing on bringing people back together to celebrate what they have in common, culminating in 100s of events across the country for a More In Common weekend in September 2016. With everything from picnics in the park to big community festivals, the weekend was designed to inject positivity at a time when many were reeling from her murder, and from the negative rhetoric used during the EU referendum campaign. 

After running a pilot project, in 2017 our Education Department launched as a fully-fledged element of our work.  In our first two academic terms alone, we reached almost 10,000 school pupils, as well as training many teachers to deliver content for themselves. 

Meanwhile, our organising team continue to work with some of our most hard to reach communities, as well as supporting a national network of volunteers.  

In a country that is increasingly divided into those who are comfortable with multiculturalism and those who feel threatened by it, we are developing training tools that can be used in all kinds of contexts to allow people to engage with other who hold different views from them, and to use those difficult conversations to bring people together.