Inviting Women into our Power and Peacebuilding Potential, Malindi, Kenya

In mid-January, Catalyst for Peace (CFP) co-hosted a retreat with Kenya-based Green String Network (GSN) to Celebrate and Nurture Women’s Leadership in Peacebuilding. 

Women came – and some men (invited for selected sessions) from many corners of Kenya, Uganda, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, the United States and Zimbabwe. Some led organizations, addressed policy, while some gathered friends, family and fellow community members to heal their trauma and make their communities better. Some ….Keep reading this post >

National Elections in Sierra Leone

Our thoughts are with Sierra Leoneans as they hold their national elections and await the outcome. You can read below the full statement to press that we issued yesterday together with our Sierra Leonean partner Fambul Tok, calling for peaceful elections and cohesive work to fulfill the nation’s promise after the elections. You can also listen here to the jingle we produced that is now airing across the Sierra Leone, ….Keep reading this post >

Celebrating and Nurturing Women’s Leadership in Peacebuilding – Malindi Reflection

Thank you for your leadership.

These words, spoken by a Kenyan woman peacebuilder, both gladdened and surprised me – gladdened because it’s always nice to have someone affirm a positive contribution they feel I’ve made; surprised because my focus had been on serving, not leading.

She spoke at the conclusion of a five-day retreat whose theme was Celebrating and Nurturing Women as Peacebuilders. Co-convened by Catalyst for Peace and Green String Network, ….Keep reading this post >

From Peace to (People-Centered) Development – tracing the journey

Catalyst for Peace’s work with Fambul Tok in Sierra Leone has shifted from its initial focus on post-war community reconciliation. As we have written about elsewhere, building on the lessons of that work, we are focused now on creating spaces for communities to lead in their own development, supported by an inclusive governance infrastructure. Simply stated, the work has moved from peacebuilding to development (and inclusive governance) – while still ….Keep reading this post >

Growing Inclusive Governance Nationally: A learning and planning retreat in N. Ireland

In the last week of March, Catalyst for Peace and our partner Fambul Tok moved further towards partnership with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development in Sierra Leone to help grow inclusive governance throughout Sierra Leone. Together with Ulster University, CFP, FT and the Ministry convened a gathering in N. Ireland to imagine and think through how to design and operationalize a national policy that would support a truly ….Keep reading this post >

Gathering women peacebuilders in Kenya – creating space to invite our capacity

At the end of February, my colleague Charles and I went to Kenya to meet with friends and colleagues who are part of an organization called Green String Network. We wanted to explore how we could, together, facilitate growing women’s leadership in peacebuilding.

Our colleagues have long experience working in Peacebuilding in Kenya and in the region more broadly. Due to the respect they have from their previous work and relationships, ….Keep reading this post >

Kenya Day 5 – Nairobi, Kibera/Kibra

Amy and I left Angi’s early today for a women’s circle in Kibera/Kibra (the name depends on your tribe), the largest “informal settlement” (referred to by many of the people who live there by the less elegant term – slum) in Nairobi, stopping along the way to pick up Nyambura, who has done a great deal of work in Kibra.

Nairobi is in the midst of what seems to be an ….Keep reading this post >

Kenya Day 4 – Malindi and Nairobi

Thursday was a mostly easier day. We stayed at our beautiful Airbnb overlooking the Indian Ocean until early afternoon, when we went to the Malindi airport for our flight back to Nairobi. For a good part of the morning, we sat on the open-air, covered terrace and shared reflections about the women’s circle of the previous day in Mombasa.

It was clear, as it had been after the circle in Nairobi, ….Keep reading this post >

Day 3 in Kenya – Malindi-Mombasa-Malindi

Up in the dark at 5:30 AM and prepared to depart by 6 AM on the 2+ hour drive to Mombasa where we were to have a meeting with about 20 women peacebuilders from the Mombasa/Coastal area. After spending a good deal of time bouncing our way north on an unpaved, rocky road with arid, rocky land that reminded me of Palestine/Israel stretching out to the east and west, we ….Keep reading this post >

Kenya Trip – Day 2, Nairobi and Malindi

Flying high over scattered clouds out toward the coast from Nairobi to Malindi, over mostly brittle brown lands bearing witness to the drought that has been visiting Kenya for some time. The dryness of the land stands in stark contrast to the living waters that flowed through our gatherings earlier today at the Green String Network office and the nearby Wasp and Sprout Café.

About 15 women and 4 men gathered ….Keep reading this post >