In 2015, Peace Direct supported a series of workshops to find out more about the work of local peacebuilding organisations in the Central African Republic. The purpose of the workshops was to find out more about the role that local organisations are playing in addressing the various conflicts in the country. We also wanted to support local groups to develop collaborative plans for further peacebuilding activities in CAR.
After a series of six workshops in various locations, these are our key findings:
Key findings from our engagements with local peacebuilders in CAR over the past year include:
- Local peacebuilding organisations are active in all provinces in CAR and engaged in a broad range of activities, focused most heavily on social cohesion and reconciliation. These activities have included engaging with a range of civil society actors that other internationally led interventions struggle to reach;
- Local organisations have an impressive rootedness in their communities and a capacity to mobilise the local population for activities, as well as to collaborate across organisations;
- Local organisations have a clear sense of key principles for successful peacebuilding in their communities, the dynamics of local conflicts, and their own strengths and weaknesses;
- Despite strong capacity to develop and implement peacebuilding activities, the lack of international or national-level support for local peacebuilding organisations has constrained their ability to work at a larger scale and has meant that their visibility to the national government and international community is low;
- For longer-term sustainability of peacebuilding in CAR it will be vital that a strong cohort of local peacebuilding organisations are supported. A strong local peacebuilding sector, with organisations or networks capable of implementing large scale programmes and with the institutional strength to advocate for their work and engage with government, gives the greatest chance of sustainable peacebuilding gains.
- The greatest needs and opportunities for supporting local peacebuilding organisations include additional direct funding, investments in organizational development, engagement in large-scale conflict analysis, and support for improved local approaches to monitoring and evaluation.
A full report, including an overview of peacebuilding plans, is available for download by clicking on the image below (PDF).