Community Leaders Seek Solutions to Youth Violence and Political Divisions
Global Peace Foundation Tanzania representatives met with 37 community and faith leaders on July 9, 2016 in Kipunguni, a community located on the western part of Tanzania’s capital Dar es Salaam, to discuss youth-related issues and proposals to advance youth development and opportunity.
Local leaders expressed concerns over recent outbreaks of youth-led violence and deepening political division between opposition parties Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo and Chama cha Mapinduzi. Cell leader Mr. Seleman Bishangazi also pointed to social challenges, such as weakening social support, unemployment and drug abuse.
Global Peace Foundation Tanzania representative Martha Nghambi introduced the values-based approach of the Global Peace Foundation, citing successful models that have been implemented in communities in conflict. Peacebuilding programs like the One Family under God campaign in Nigeria and One Nation under God campaign in Kenya, she said, have moderated conflict and rebuilt cross-community relationships and cooperation based on shared values. “Shared principles and values are the foundation for social cohesion,” said Ms. Nghambi.
Mr. Bishangazi expressed enthusiasm for potential implementation of Global Peace Foundation Tanzania’s peace campaign, Vijana Na Amani (“Youth for Peace” in Swahili). “I believe this meeting will change our perception and from now onwards,” he said. “Let’s forget our differences and unity as one family.” Vijana Na Amani has sought to counter youth radicalization and violent extremism through raising peace ambassadors through education, sensitization and leadership and entrepreneurship development in communities and universities.