We are pleased to announce that YES-Ghana and Catholic Relief Services have signed a collaboration agreement on the ‘Promoting Peace in Northern Ghana Project’. Under the agreement, YES-Ghana will host a week-long Young Peace Ambassadors’ Camp in
May 2016 to train and deploy youth leaders to promote sustained peace and conflict transformation in their communities before, during and in the immediate aftermath of this year’s general elections.
The project targets communities in northern and upper east regions under the Catholic Diocese of Damongo, Tamale, and Navrongo/Bolgatanga. An open and competitive process will be used in identifying and selecting suitable youth leaders from the three Catholic dioceses. Eligible applicants should be between the ages of 15 and 25 years, in school or out of school, hailing from and resident in any of the respective project areas and must have a basic understanding of English and fluency in a local language. The selection process will also look out for youth who have demonstrated leadership experience in school, community, or religious settings as well as youth recommended by community leaders or diocesan leadership.
The selected Youth Peace Ambassadors will be equipped with capacities in promoting peaceful elections and preventing electoral violence through the use of information communications technology. Activities that utilize platforms such as radio, dramatizations, photography, sports, dance, music and art to promote peaceful elections and non-violence will be adopted by the selected peace ambassadors in order to send peace messages out to youth in the two regions.
Training during the week long camp will combine approaches in areas of goal-setting, creative learning, action planning, and thematic sessions. The camp agenda will address the root causes of violent conflicts, and how young people can become active players in achieving peace and non-violence. The camp will also focus on techniques for raising creation, communication, advocacy, and media-relations, as well as preparation for implementation of local, youth-led peace building activities.
Facilitators will be drawn from key institutions within the national peace architecture, including the National Peace Council, West Africa Network for Peace-building, and the National Commission on Civic Education, among others.
Over the years, YES-Ghana has prioritized conflict resolution and peace building as a key national policy concern in its landmark policy document published October 2012: the Youth Manifesto. The Manifesto provides comprehensive policy recommendations on conflict prevention as well as actions for youth development organisations, youth leaders and wider networks of influence to commit to delivering peace building and conflict resolution trainings for young people in the promotion of intercultural dialogue, civic education and mutual respect. YES-Ghana has in the past hosted several peace camps for youth in Alavanyo and Nkonya.