Society for Women and Youth Affairs (SWAYA) in partnership with Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre (YEAC) with the support of Development and Peace, Caritas, Canada on Monday, July 20, 2020 organized training workshop for youths in the Niger Delta on Human Rights, Conflict Resolution and Peace-building mechanisms at Green Palm Hotel, Bori-Ogoni.
The training is an effort by both organizations to mitigate the escalation of conflict among young people in the Niger Delta.
The 50 participants who benefited from the program were drawn from Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, Cross River, Ondo and Rivers States respectively.
The program was an activity of under the project: Youths Training on Conflict Resolution and Alternative Livelihood Through Modular Refineries for Environmental Sustainability in the Niger Delta” while the specific objective was To raise awareness among the youths about human right and increase peaceful conflict resolution in the Niger Delta.
Declaring the program open, the Executive Director of SWAYA, Stella Amanie thanked participants and expressed her happiness over their encouraging turn up despite the effect of Covid-19 pandemic. In the same vein, she specially thanked Development and Peace, Caritas, Canada for their funding support to ensure that the project implementation up to the last activity was a success.
Speaking further, she said the program was timely, especially when human rights violations in the Niger Delta and Nigeria are on the rise at the family, community and societal levels as a result of poor capacity for conflict management and resolution. Consequently, she charged beneficiaries to open up their minds for new information about conflict resolution that will empower them to build resilience and become ambassadors of peace anywhere they find themselves.
Also speaking, the Executive Director of Advocacy Centre, Fyneface Dumnamene Fyneface in his welcome address expressed his happiness to welcome the youth to the training workshop and also appreciated the funding support of Development and Peace that made the organization of the workshop possible. He said “the training series is titled “YOUTHS TRAINING ON HUMAN RIGHTS, CONFLICT RESOLUTION AND PEACEBUILDING MECHAMISMS IN THE NIGER DELTA” started in 2018 when it was first organized in partnership and funding support from PAX VIVA FOUNDATION of Rev. Fr. Abel while the 2019 batch for Legislative Assembly Members of all four local Government areas in Ogoni was organized with co-funding support from Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) and Centre for Environment, Human Rights and Development (CEHRD) and the 2020 batch funded by Development and Peace. Fyneface further said the project idea was developed in the United States during his participation in the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) which also led the establishment of “Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre (simply called YEAC or ADVOCACY CENTRE)” as a platform to implement experiences gains and train other youths to promote human rights, conflict resolution and peace-building in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.
One of the facilitators, an Associate Professor, Fidelis Allen of the University of Port Harcourt took the participants on “TRANSFORMATIONAL CONFLICT MANAGEMENT”. In his introduction on conflict management techniques, he emphasized that conflict is pervasive and that it is vital for young people to be competent in the management of conflict in order to prevent its escalation to war at homes, communities and the society at large. He also introduced participants to the principles of transformative conflict management techniques.
Speaking further, he said the key objective of the raining was to build the capacity of participants to be able to respond to conflict in their communities, prevent escalation and equip them with conflict transformation techniques so that they can serve as peace ambassadors through the management of inter-personal and inter-group conflicts.
Mr. Dornubari Frank, one the resource persons presented a paper Titled: “Do No Harm” conflict resolution principles. He said that the principle was developed by Mary Anderson. The principles include: Partiality, Neutrality and Community based networking.
Conclusively, Philomena from Bayelsa State Speaking on behalf the participants at the end of the training, expressed their happiness for the privilege to participate in the training workshop and promised that knowledge acquired will be applied at homes, communities and the society at large for the promotion of peace building in their communities as ambassadors of peace.