Young South Sudanese Women as Community Change Agents
08 Jul 2024 - 11:35
Bron: Clingendael

Last week in Nairobi, Clingendael conducted a mediation skills training for a group of young women from South Sudan. This training was organised in partnership with IPHRD-Africa, a Kenyan NGO focused on promoting peace in the Horn of Africa. These women are poised to play crucial roles as insider mediators, fostering dialogue between opposing parties and advocating for peace and security within their communities – especially with an eye on the national elections planned for December, this year.

The training equipped participants with negotiation and mediation skills, enabling them to act as change agents in politically complex environments. They shared their experiences and perspectives with one another and conducted conflict analysis to identify stakeholders, understand their positions, interests, and needs, and determine the steps needed to promote peace and facilitate dialogue between these actors.

The women discussed the role of culture in various conflicts in South Sudan and the importance of being aware of their own cultural frameworks when mediating between different cultural groups. This cultural awareness, combined with skills such as reflective listening and asking the right questions, can enhance their sensitivity and effectiveness as mediators.

The participants applied their new-found skills and knowledge to develop action plans for their communities, aiming to reduce gender-based violence, intercommunal violence, pre-election violence, and combat overall discrimination.