BODE GBADEBO, Abuja
Ahead of the 2020 International Day of Peace slated for Monday, September 21, an humanitarian group, Mercy Corps, has said it will use its Community Initiatives to Promote Peace (CIPP) programme to amplify the voices of women to mark this year’s edition of the day.
In a press statement on Thursday, Mercy Corps said the CIPP programme it implements in partnership with other humanitarian organisations aligns with this year’s theme of the International Day of Peace – ‘Shaping Peace Together’.
“On this international day of peace, the ‘Community Initiatives to Promote Peace’ (CIPP) program implemented by Mercy Corps in Partnership with Interfaith Mediation Center, Pastoral Resolve (PARE), Africa Radio and Drama Association (ARDA) and Savannah Center for Democracy, Development and Diplomacy (SCDDD) fully aligns itself with this year’s theme of ‘Shaping Peace Together’.
“The theme honors the spirit of inclusion, non-discrimination and acceptance as a global initiative that promotes respect, safety and dignity for everyone.
“The programme has lined up activities to amplify the voices of women and advocate for an end to all forms of discrimination and collective effort to address barriers that impede meaningful participation of women and other marginalised population in peace processes in Nigeria’s North Central and Northwest regions,” it said.
Mercy Corps noted that, as witnessed over the years, conflicts have been on the rise in the North-Central region, with devastating consequences on development, democracy, security, economy, human life and climate, among others.
“In a bid to address this, the US Government through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is supporting the Community Initiatives to Promote Peace program to enable communities prevent and respond to violence and violent extremism by strengthening key skills and relationships, and fostering an enabling environment for peace through policy advocacy, media outreach, and linkages to development programs.
“On this important day in the world calendar, Mercy Corps reiterates its commitment to reducing violent conflict and intergroup violence in the places it works by lessening systemic drivers and increasing community resilience to those drivers.
“In Nigeria we will continue to address gender gaps in conflict prevention, and peacebuilding through: (i) Integration of women leaders into peace structures (ii) Capacity development and support for women-led peace initiatives and (iii) Enhancement of women’s networks to build a movement for strategic conflict prevention and response,” it added.