Weak institutions, porous borders and climate change combine to make conditions harsher, nurturing sometimes violent competition over scarce resources between ethnic communities of Northern Kenya, and the proliferation of illegal small arms. (Photo: Oliver Noonan / Shalom Centre)

The peace builders of Northern Kenya; Successful research led model spreads to other African nations

Founded in aftermath of 2007-08’s national post-election violence, Kenya’s Shalom Centre pioneers successful, research-led formula for preventing conflict between rival groups that includes conducting peace education in primary and secondary schools.

Bolivian children play outside their school. (Photo: David Stephenson / Flickr Creative Commons)

Child and Youth Agency in Peacebuilding: Conflict Prevention and Peace Education

Peace education and mediation training in schools should be seen as a resourceful conflict prevention tool rather than merely a post-conflict reconciliation measure. In March this year, a conjunction of international non-governmental organizations published a report on children and youth as successful promoters of peace in conflict ridden communities. The report relied upon case studies from Colombia, DRC and Nepal, and its authors concluded that the integration of children and youth in peacebuilding projects contributes to lowering the incidence of violence and discrimination in the communities studied.