By Emiko Perea
The aftermath of the general election in Tanzania last November was tumultuous for people on opposing sides. Radicalization among the youth population has led to ongoing violence across Tanzania, especially due to differing religious and political viewpoints. To rectify this, Global Peace Foundation Tanzania started an ongoing project called Vijana na Amani (Youth and Peace) several years ago to counter radicalization in youth through peace education and capacity building workshops.
This year, as part of the Vijana na Amani project, GPF Tanzania started “My Vote my Peace” to promote peace during the election. The general election also prompted GPF to create the Wanawake Sasa project. This project connected 150 young women to women leaders from their political parties to learn to campaign peacefully and to develop leadership skills in the political spaces. Through mutual communication between the mentees and mentors, these young women were trained to become the voice of change for peace.
One young participant, Tunu Msekwa, said, “Wanawake Sasa project trainings have given me some adequate skills in conflict prevention and resolution, moral leadership skills, presentation, and public skills. I will bring positive changes in my society through the use of these valuable skills from training.”
To further the efforts for peacebuilding in Tanzania, the inauguration of the 16 Days of Activism 2020 took place on November 25, 2020, to end gender-based violence and strengthen women’s human rights. Stakeholders from embassies, UN agencies, government, and development partners attended the inauguration under the slogan “Change Begins With Me.” There were 104 participants with the guest of honor, Tulia Ackson, the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Tanzania.