Looking back at 2019, I am continually impressed by the courage, commitment, and resilience of our partners and thousands of local peacebuilders around the world. As war and violence raged in many places, local people on the frontlines of conflict have saved lives, interrupted cycles of violence, and strengthened the foundations for lasting peace in their societies.
Overall in 2019, Peace Direct supported local peacebuilders in 12 countries to stop violent conflict. Our partners set up local Peace Courts in the Democratic Republic of Congo, helped children traumatized by Syria’s war and trained Filipino women in conflict resolution, among many other projects.
As the end of the year approaches, we take a moment to look back at some of the key moments in our work and the lives of our partners.
Despite a year of war, violence and tumultuous conflict, the work of our partners gives me confidence, hope and inspiration that local people can stop war and build peace, even in the world’s most fragile places. As 2016 draws to a close Chief Executive, Dylan Mathews, shares some of the years’s highlights.
Today, as we celebrate International Day of Peace, I hope that we can all take the lessons from local peacebuilders and embody them now, not tomorrow or next week. If we believe in our own power, take the lead in building peace in our communities, and engage other people directly in this, there may well be a time we no longer need to mark one day as International Day of Peace. This is my #messageofhope.
This week saw the launch of the 2016 Global Peace Index (GPI) report, which made difficult reading for anyone in our sector working to build peace around the world. According to the report the world became less peaceful and more unequal in 2015, with the world’s least peaceful countries seeing further conflict and violence.