A huge thank you to everybody who has supported Peace Direct in 2012. For everybody who has donated, volunteered, fundraised or told a friend about Peace Direct, your support has made a genuine contribution to a more peaceful world.
With your help, local peacebuilders have made some remarkable achievements in the past year. In some of the world’s most difficult and dangerous conflicts, your support has stopped violence, united communities and saved lives.
Here is just a taste of what you have made possible in 2012…
In Zimbabwe presidential elections are scheduled for next year, and fears are growing that the country will see a return of the political violence that marred the 2008 elections. Local peacebuilders Envision are working to make sure history doesn’t repeat.
An upsurge in violence in Eastern DR Congo hit the headlines recently, but this only the most recent escalation in one of the world’s most deadly conflicts. You are supporting two projects there. The Foundation Chirezi is building a network of traditional courts where local people can resolve disputes without violence.
The Centre Resolution Conflits has extensive projects in Congo, and in 2012 completed work reintegrate former fighters from the feared Lord’s Resistance Army.Lord’s Resistance Army to renounce violence.
In Sri Lanka the violence may have ended but there is still a desperate need to unite communities in the face of ever present religious tensions. You are supporting the Centre for Peacebuilding and Reconciliation to do just that. Through their work with religious leaders and young people they are building bridges across religious divides.
In Pakistan the Taliban attack on schoolgirl Malala has cruelly demonstrated the threat of religious extremism. With your help, Aware Girls is preventing the spread of extremism and rescuing young people from recruitment into militant organisations.
In South Sudan decades of civil war have left a legacy of local violence. You are helping the Collaborative for Peace to quickly respond to conflict by empowering local people.
In Nepal, even after the end of armed conflict, political tensions are rife. Your support allows YAPE to quickly intervene in potential flashpoints before they get out of hand.
Closer to home in Newham, East London – the UK’s most diverse borough – Truce 20/20 is building a generation of young peacebuilders. In the run up to the London Olympics these ‘Trucers’ worked to prevent confrontation between police and young people.
Without your support none of this would have been possible.
Peace Direct and these amazing peacebuilders rely on your help. Not only financially, but for the moral support that comes with knowing that people half a world away are prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with them on the long road to peace.
Merry Christmas and very happy New Year, from everybody at Peace Direct.