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Truce 20/20: spreading peace in East London.

  • Published

    4 April 2013
  • Written by

    Peace Direct

Truce 20/20 graduate, Hiruni Wickramanayaka, how recent Truce graduates are spreading the peacebuilding skills they have learnt to the wider community.

After 10 successful weeks of working with the young people’s peacebuilding organisation Truce 20/20, cohort 12 (the latest Truce group) have already started getting involved and making a change to our community and helping slowly broaden the possibilities awaiting.

Recent Truce graduates have contributed in a number of different ways, all to help take the peacebuilding program forward and give what we are privileged to know to others.

As a peacebuilding community we believe that it is very important to share our experiences and knowledge with others and volunteering in schools, youth clubs and other local places is the first step towards making a change. Graduates Jermaine and Gabriel, have started volunteering in secondary schools where they have helped deliver peer mediation training sessions to students. Peer mediation involves sharing and developing skills to mediate in conflicts in school, and on the street. Jermaine and Gabriel hosted the sessions with classes of 12 students. Jermaine reported feeling nervous beforehand, but when he saw how his experiences with mediation were really inspiring to the students his confidence grew. Other graduates, Frankie, Jan and Danish, have volunteered in local youth clubs where they conducted conflict resolution workshops.

Since the programme has finished Danish has joined Newham’s Youth Participation panel and is currently working on a borough-wide event to bring together youth panels all across Newham, east London.

Alongside volunteering and getting involved with the community, Truce also hold steering group meetings which are held bi-monthly with Truce graduates to discuss how things are going and what new things can be done to take the programme forward. I myself am a member of the steering group and find it very helpful as issues are discussed collectively as a group, and I believe these meetings have a great impact on how smoothly things run within the programme.

Personally joining the Truce 20/20 programme has benefited me in many ways including a variety of new peacebuilding skills and also building myself as a person. The programme really surprised me with the amount of skills that it taught me, I am overwhelmed that I can now share my experiences with people who need it. I have really taken something away from the experiences and managed to find myself using conflict resolution skills with my own family and friends and it really does feel satisfying. I walked into this programme as a very shy individual and to see myself grow and become someone who is able to now teach others is just very rewarding. This is definitely only just the beginning for me.


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