YouthPower Learning Webinar
Beyond Dividing Lines: Overcoming Challenges in Youth-Led Civic Engagement for Peace
Tuesday, February 26, 2019
9:00 am to 10:30 am (EST)
3:00 pm to 4:30 pm (CET)
Click here to access the webinar recording and resources.
Youth are involved in all phases of peace and conflict cycles, from prevention to humanitarian support to post-conflict truth and reconciliation processes. Youth bridge the divide between peace and conflict, for example, when former gang members create peace initiatives in Sierra Leone, and young women who had faced discrimination find their own voice and strength to create new enterprises. Youth initiatives contribute to bringing together societies and create positive perceptions of all groups, and help to foster dialogue and normalization of relations among groups previously opposed to each other. This is one of the findings of a recent youth-led research conducted by YouthPower Learning grantee, the United Network of Young Peacebuilders (UNOY) in Afghanistan, Colombia, Libya, and Sierra Leone.
This webinar will discuss youth and civic engagement in peacebuilding by sharing youth-movement experiences from two of the countries included in the study. Speakers will connect these cases with the current global trends taking place in other conflict affected areas. During the discussion, speakers will focus on factors that motivate and limit youth to undertake civic activities for peace; they will also discuss the impacts and challenges of this work. This webinar will provide first-hand insights from young, local researchers, and concrete recommendations for policy-makers and program designers on how to shape policies and programming related to peace and security that contribute to more youth-inclusive peacebuilding and peaceful societies.
Melvin Sharty - Young Peacebuilder, Youth Participation in Peace and Development Sierra Leone
Melvin Sharty is currently a member of Youth Participation in Peace and Development Sierra Leone (YPPD-SL) whose work is geared towards enhancing the capacity of youths to be self-starters in the positive and peaceful co-existence that is needed for the wellbeing of the communities. Melvin has organized a number of grassroots civic engagement trainings on the promotion of non-violent dialogue among youth, trained youth as domestic election observers, increasing transparency in the healthcare sector and provided victims of domestic violence with safe spaces to report sexual assaults at the Network Movement for Democracy & Human Rights.
Rawan Khalfallah - Young Peacebuilder, Together We Build it Organization, Libya
Rawan promotes sustainable peace by empowering young people and women to take a strong stand in violence prevention, advocating for their inclusion in decision making processes and to take on a leadership position. She is a member of the organization Together We Built It!, where she leads an online awareness campaign on gender based violence, which integrates comics and pop-art. The campaign has reached more than half a million young people in Libya. Rawan is also a U.S Department of State exchange leadership alumni and a former member of the UN Women 2018 Agora program team.
Celina Del Felice - Educator and Researcher, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya
Dr. Celina Del Felice has a background in Political Science, Peace and Conflict Studies. She works as a trainer and researcher on topics related to peace and global citizenship education, children and youth participation and mediation in multicultural settings. Presently, she is an e-learning tutor and educator for the Network University and Universitat Oberta de Catalunya and she coordinates the Humblebees network.
All speakers have been involved as researchers as part of the following research project: Understanding youth-led civic engagement in peacebuilding: Examining the context and contributions of young peacebuilders in Afghanistan, Libya, Sierra Leone, and Colombia.