Youth Arise for Rural Development, Empowerment and Peace Building (YARDEPB) works towards development, empowerment and peacebuilding in order to try to address the numerous challenges faced by people living in Sierra Leone.
YARDEPB's mission is to work as a youth-led community-based non-political and impartial human rights advocacy organisation cutting across ethnic, political, religious, educational, social and regional differences to ensure that youths as well as other members of the western area rural district become aware of their human rights and security, roles, responsibilities and importance in their various communities and to actively participate or become involved in development, empowerment and peacebuilding processes within their localities for better quality of life in rural areas. YARDEPB believes that young people are the key to the future of the rural areas. Their vision, skills and talents are essential to overcoming the challenges that rural communities are facing today.
The development approach focuses on thematic areas such as agriculture, road work and maintenance, and health and sanitation. The empowerment and peacebuilding approaches focus on such themes such as elections, civic education, HIV/AIDS campaigns, gender and development, youth and development, decentralisation and governance, peace and conflict resolution, human rights, justice and security, media, adult education, and peace education (through mediation, effective advocacy, community sensitisation, mobilisation, workshops and radio talks) to enable local residents to understand and reflect on the dynamics of those themes.
YARDEPB has been carrying out activities since its creation on January 5th 2011, and has been making steady progress and achievements in its peacebuilding approach:
- In 2011, YARDEPB organised community meetings with the Waterloo township on peace education and human rights sensitisation. It also intervened in an extortion matter in a school at Banga Farm community.
- In 2013, YARDEPB organised a district achievement/meritorious award ceremony to recognise the efforts of hardworking individuals and institutions in the district.
- In 2013, YARDEPB also implemented a training program of young people on para-legal skills and mediation processes.
- Currently, YAREPB is partnering with Voice of Peace and Development Radio in Kissi town on a program titled 'The People and the Law' focused on sensitizing people on the laws of Sierra Leone, especially the Gender Acts of 2007, the Child Rights Act 2007, the Sexual Offences Act 2012, the Local Government of 2004, and many other legislations.