Peacebuilding Ministry urges youth to be peace ambassadors
By Wek Atak Kacjang
The National Ministry of Peacebuilding is urging young people across the country to be peace ambassadors.
Pia Philip Michael, the Ministry’s Undersecretary made a call during Synergizing Nonviolent Action and Peacebuilding (SNAP) training conducted by Active Citizen South Sudan on Wednesday in Juba.
“We know that youth are components of stability in our country and so, we want you to be peace ambassadors. You should have ideas of resolving conflict in peaceful means,” he narrated during an opening session.
“They should enable peace to expand and grow; we want to implant the new thinking of conflict resolution,” the peace official added.
The national peacebuilding training was conducted by Active Citizen South Sudan (ACSS), an indigenous organization through funding from the UN Women South Sudan.
Over 100 youth participated in the event meant to build their capacities on how to manage local conflicts in the communities.
Mr. Michael stressed that though the youth have continued to be challenged by quite a number of challenges including a vulnerability that pushes them to violence, he noted it was high time to reconstruct and learn from the peacebuilding experience.
“One of the solutions to our problems is what we are doing today which is peacebuilding. We need to create a platform for dialogue and the conversation among the youth,” he said.
The Undersecretary continues the people should know that the conflict is part of life and that it can still be resolved through dialogues.
According to Mr. Michael, the national Ministry of Peacebuilding was working hard to bring about sustainable peace among young people.
“We have a broad-based holistic approach that the ministry is thinking about; focusing on sustainable livelihoods skills for the young people not only creating jobs in the cities but strategizes on how to help to engage locals on peacebuilding,” he added.
“We need to be able to add value to the young people on how we can support them to build the country,” he concluded.
Angelina Stephen Ban, the Project Coordinator for Active Citizen said they were able to bring youth together to discuss ways to give peace a chance.
“We know that the youth are core factors of development basically for our country; and so, we brought them together, over 100 of them to be able to share with them some aspects of conflict through peaceful means,” she explained.
Angelina stated that the peacebuilding skills were missing among the youth and she hopes the youth use the knowledge to enable peaceful society.
“So, the idea is that at the end of the workshop, they should be able to have that thinking in their own communities to be advocates of peacebuilding and nonviolence,” Ms. Angelina concluded.
Gach Mithiang Gach Chieny, a participant of the training said that the environment and its surroundings have continued to challenge the youth and this is why it has been difficult to adopt to peacebuilding strategies.
He then said that they are now going to take lead in reaching sustainable peace since they didn’t have skills.
“These skills are important to wake us up. Personally, I will help in preaching peace among the South Sudanese. We need to love ourselves as one people. We shall form a group that can speak on peacebuilding in our locality, “he narrated.
“If we can get two to five people, who believe that peacebuilding is the solution to conflict then peace will be definitely achieved among us the young people,”
According to thereports, most of the young people have been dragged into various conflicts in one or the other.