- PEACE & SECURITY
Whilst guns may have fallen silent in Sierra Leone after the eleven (11) years rebel war, the problem of youth and children engaging in cliques, violence, ghettos, gangs, terrorism, conflicts, armed robbery, social exclusion, alcoholism and misuse of drugs, are still a reality. This opens a new battlefield for the authorities with an assumption of frightening proportions. If not tackled urgently and decisively it may consume a whole generation of our Youth and children.
To solve such issues, we have been working in collaboration with Young Peacebuilders in New York, USA. We are together engaging in intensive peace education and leadership training interventions within Bo City, Sierra Leone. This will reverse the trend towards harmful behavior. We have been reaching out, mobilizing, re-orientating and building the capacity of youth and children in and out of schools by setting them up into peace clubs to educate them on the issues of violence, drug abuse, alcoholism and rudiments of peace, mindfulness, good leadership and non-violence. This emphasis is on the need for them to become effective peacebuilders and leaders who will be fully involved in the process of peace and good leadership promotion in their schools and communities. Currently our peace education project is operating in two schools, United Brethren in Christ Junior Secondary School, which is in Moriba town; and Aladura Junior Secondary School, which is in the Kennedy community in Kakua Chiefdom.
This project has helped to transform most of our young people into effective peacebuilders in their schools and communities. It has further helped in removing some of the roadblocks faced by young people that normally serve as barriers for them to expose their peacebuilding potentials. This builds bridges that strengthen their peacebuilding capacities as they too have been helping to share their peacebuilding experiences derived from the peace club training with their fellow colleagues in schools and communities.
Our peace education and good leadership project have been using the following strategies in ensuring the realization of our peacebuilding activities:
- Forming young peace clubs in schools, to train club members on managing peer pressure, building self-esteem, negotiation, project management, communication, decision making process and building of good social relations among their peers in preventing violence and enacting peace among peers.
- We nurture environments where young people’s peacebuilding potential is maximized. We do this by developing quality child and youth peacebuilding tools, projects, research, partnerships and together supporting more young peacebuilders and increasing their impact.
- Distribution of non-violent, peace building and effective leadership related materials during our meeting sessions with the peace club members and other means of timely dissemination of information on preventive measures to violence and illegal use of drugs and small arms/light weapon trading.
- Developed research and tools that nurtures peacebuilding passion and skill in children and youth in a context that is impacted to armed conflict, violence, drug abuse, in helping to prevent and end the cycles of violence and drug abuse amongst young people in Kakua Chiefdom, Bo District.
- Identify and share best practices on how children and young peacebuilders can maintain resilience while they continue to exercise their peacebuilding skills and voice on key security issues limiting them to reach their full potentials.
- Partnership: Start and or/strengthen local partnerships to better engage young people as peace builders within Kakua Chiefdom, Bo District.
- Young Peacebuilders clubs: To start Young Peace clubs in schools and communities within Kakua chiefdom with the Young Peacebuilder support and guidance.
- Resources Development: To help identify, pursue, acquire, and manage funds to develop the Young Peacebuilder partnership and peace clubs. Communication: To communicate clearly and consistently with the Young Peacebuilder team abroad and partners locally to ensure efficient, well informed and expanding collaboration.