Students Against Violence Everywhere Sierra Leone (SAVE- SL) is an organisation where students learn about alternatives to violence and put into practice their knowledge through school and community service projects. As they participate in SAVE activities, students learn crime prevention, conflict management skills and the virtues of good citizenship, civility and nonviolence.
The organisation was created in 1989 following the shooting of 17-year-old Alex Orange. In response to his death at the hands of armed men from a rival school, students formed Students Against Violence Everywhere. SAVE is founded on the hope of making schools and communities more secure as well as involving students into meaningful violence prevention.
Aims and objectives
- To identify issues of all forms of violence, their causes and the way they affect people and find alternatives and means of addressing them through active violence prevention efforts, conflict resolution strategies, advocacies, or otherwise.
- To create positive partnership with other organisations that compliment the effort of peace and development .
- To consolidate the democratization process by ensuring sustainable peace and development.
- To discourage all forms of violence in all activities of both the private and the public sector by promoting transparency, accountability, unity, respect for the rule of law, etc.
- To promote youth's participation on national issues as well as creating a breeding ground for potential and quality leadership among them, to attain national development.
- To compliment/ promote the fundamental principles of human rights towards improving human dignity.
- To create awareness of young people to respect the principle of the rule of law, as well as the legal framework of the country to attain peace.
- To change people's perspective about young individuals being problem causers, by demonstrating their mature and responsible personalities.
- To ensure good governance, through advocacy and active monitoring of both the private and the public sector through pressure groups.
- To ensure peace sustainability through the promotion of multi-cultural ethnic tolerance through community service projects and campaigns.
Approach and method
SAVE - SL encourages youth to understand the importance of the rule of law. Members of the organisation learn to practice personal safety awareness and civic responsibility in crime prevention. They are encouraged to coordinate and participate in service projects that aid in the prevention of crime (ex. painting of peaceful messages over graffiti-ridden areas, advocating in city councils for more violence prevention programs).
SAVE - SL works to promote the management of conflicts for the safety of everyone involved. Putting an emphasis on the term 'management', the organisation seeks to build lesson plans on active listening skills and bullying prevention (ex. teaching of basic steps in conflict management, mock mediation or staged scenarios to practice skills).
SAVE - SL empowers students to get involved in hands-on efforts to prevent violence. Learning by doing is considered the most rewarding learning experience. Service projects focus on delivering a service to others and put into action the practical knowledge learned by students (ex. secondary school students teaching primary school students, donating time to local mission).