Peacebuilding

The goal of the peacebuilding programme is for communities to enjoy increased levels of peace. Violence and fear of violence negatively influence a range of rights, and violent conflict is therefore a barrier to human development at all levels. Survivors of violence often suffer long-term physical and psychological harm, while individuals and families living in conflict areas are forced to focus on organising their lives in order to avoid violence, rather than to effectively improve their living conditions. Access to basic services, sustainable livelihoods and formal and informal justice tend to decrease during violent conflict, as do freedom of expression and people’s mobility and ability to organise and participate as active citizens. Local structures that normally prevent and manage conflict are often overwhelmed due to the intensity of the conflict. 

 

Implementing Coutries

In 2018, NCA-supported peace structures addressed 383 conflicts related to issues like land, water, gender-based violence and religion. Underlying this success was the trust and respect earned by members of peace structures, rapidly addressing conflicts and thus preventing escalation, and building on local traditions for conflict transformation. A key to local peace structures’ success is their inclusiveness (in terms of gender, age, ethnicity, religion) and availability in contexts characterised by weak formal justice systems. For example, in Afghanistan, 78.5% of respondents in the end-line survey of the peacebuilding programme strongly agreed that the local peace structures were trustworthy and 70.5% strongly agreed that they were able to resolve cases timely and promptly. 

In 2018, focus continued on building more constructive relations between and within social groups. The Regional Peace Programme worked towards preventing and countering violent extremism and radicalisation, through working with religious leaders on alternative narratives to the ones promoted by extremist groups and promoting these narratives through traditional and social media. In parallel to the media outreach, youth change agents were capacitated and engaged in different ways, and they later took a range of initiatives to prevent radicalisation among their peers.

Local actors contributed to create, reform or better implement laws, agreements, policies or institutions addressing key driving factors of conflict. In 2018, 90 laws, agreements, policies or institutions improved following local actors’ advocacy efforts. NCA in South Sudan closely accompanied the South Sudan Council of Churches (SSCC) in their work for peace. This contributed to the SSCC being invited to, and with direct support from NCA participating in, the revitalisation of official peace talks in Ethiopia, where church leaders called for a cessation of hostilities.

NCA and its partners have in different ways worked to increase women’s participation in peacebuilding: building women’s capacity and networks, engaging in awareness raising and advocacy also towards male stakeholders and insisting on women’s participation despite resistance. In 2018, the peacebuilding programme supported 3,900 women in gaining skills in conflict transformation, many of whom put their new skills to use in local or national peacebuilding initiatives, including training of other women, participation in high-level dialogues, facilitation of community level dialogue, and mediation of local conflicts. 53% of female participants reported increased influence in decision making in peacebuilding structures due to NCA’s support.

Peacebuilding donor percentage

Results case

Pakistan’s Sindh Hindu Marriage Act provides a ray of hope for the protection of Hindu women and girls.