Developing skills to build peace in Bougainville
The peacebuilding training is exactly what we needed.
Training participant and community leader from Bana, Bougainville.
Community leaders from across central and north Bougainville have been developing their peacebuilding skills, with training from the Nazareth Centre for Rehabilitation (NCFR), supported by Conciliation Resources.
The 2001 Bougainville Peace Agreement saw the end of almost a decade of violent conflict on the island – an autonomous region of Papua New Guinea. A target date for a referendum on Bougainville’s future political status has been set for June 2019. Within a challenging post-conflict environment the NCFR is working to enhance the skills of local leaders to identify and develop solutions to conflicts in their communities.
In May, the NCFR with support from Conciliation Resources, held a three-week training course for 56 community leaders, all of whom are actively committed to peacebuilding and social work at a community level. The course included training on peacebuilding theory, conflict transformation, trauma healing and the use of conflict analysis tools. One participant, a community leader from Bana, said:
This peacebuilding training is exactly what is needed, it helps us to connect all of the pieces together.
The participants used the knowledge and analytical tools learnt during the training to develop strategies, which could be used to address conflict and build peace in their areas. One female community leader from Haku, North Bougainville, said:
We have been using what we have learned in this training to map out conflicts in our communities and find strategies for how we can address that when we go back.
During the final day of the workshop the NCFR invited representatives from the Autonomous Bougainville Government to take part in a dialogue session where participants debated the public policy issues affecting their communities.