People building peace: Annual Report 2017
“Our work is not done in isolation…ours is without doubt a collaborative endeavour.”
Where we work
2017 in numbers...
In collaboration with our partners DAAD (the German Academic Exchange Service), we opened up possibilities for students from Abkhazia to study in Germany. Enabling young Abkhaz to participate in overseas exchanges is an important step towards the de-isolation in Abkhazia, which many feel is crucial for building peaceful societies in the region. Read more.
A community meeting in Dungu, the Democratic Republic of Congo.
In 2017, we supported over 550 youth from eleven communities to form a network of youth coalitions committed to promoting messages of peace and tolerance. The participation of young people in these groups has led to armed gangs giving up their weapons and stopping their criminal activity; young people ending the extra-judicial killing of suspected Boko Haram members, and girls pursuing alternative livelihoods to sex work. Find out more.
"This group called me their friend and sister and showed me love...I feel like I have the chance at a new life now." [Member of a youth peace platform in Nigeria]
In 2017, we successfully engaged key influencers in New Delhi and Islamabad, as well as from across Jammu and Kashmir, increasing collaboration between them. Notably, we enabled two former national security personnel from India and Pakistan respectively, to jointly participate in a public meeting in London – the first time this has ever happened. Find out more about our work in South Asia.
Young ladakhis in Srinagar, Indian-administered Kashmir, share their perspectives on peace and conflict. In 2017, a total of 1,283 new people paticipated in dialogue and awareness-raising initatives about building peace within Jammu and Kashmir.
Alongside our partners CIASE, we are supporting a network of indigenous women from ten different indigenous communities across Colombia to play an active role in the country’s peace process. In 2017 we provided training to over 90 women, as well as an innovative internship opportunity with CIASE, which allows the women to engage with, and lobby, national and international decision-makers. Find out more.
"Indigenous women are totally invisible, discriminated against, and excluded even in their own territories and by some indigenous authorities. CONAMIC allowed me to understand that this situation is also common in many other towns. The alliance of women motivated me to join electoral politics." Maria Ines, Nasa People, Colombia. Find out more.
As part of the International Contact Group, we continue to provide support to the peace process between the Government of the Philippines and MILF. In addition, this year the government and the NDF negotiation panel asked us to facilitate some of their meetings. This role helps enable the negotiations to move forward and is testament to the trusted relationships we have built in the country. Find out more about our work in the Philippines.
In 2017, we strengthened the capacities of local peacebuilders in Kenya, through an exchange visit to West Africa. The visit enabled the Kenyans to gain valuable insight and inspiration from the success of the West African dialogue platforms. Following the visit, participants committed to tangible actions which they can implement at home. These included the involvement of more women in their peace committees and better collaboration between officials and the committees. Watch this film to find out more.
Kenyan peacebuilders attend a meeting of District Platforms for Dialogue in Grand Cape Mount, Liberia, as part of a comparative learning trip to West Africa.
Sister Lorraine Garasu is one of the island of Bougainville’s foremost peace advocates. She’s founder of our partner organisation, the Nazareth Centre, which provides care and trauma counselling for women, children and former combatants affected by the conflict on the island. Her work has earned her the Papua New Guinea Government's Silver Jubilee Award and the Order of Australia medal. Read her story.
"Whether it is a survivor or victim of sexual violence or former combatants, the most rewarding thing is to witness them recover and live a normal life." [Sister Lorraine Garasu]