APPROCH TO OPERATIONALIZE A PEACE EDUCATION CLUB

 

      Procedures

 

  • Conduct a study to identify the problem of the environment and the capacity building needs of the supervisor; identify the intervention sites (schools, churches, community...)

  • Organize awareness and information contacts with the managers of the intervention sites.

  • Identify with site managers the supervisors of the program.

  • Select club members in the sites.

  • Form membership committees in the sites.

  • Develop the work plan

 

CONFLICT ANALYSIS AND INTERVENTION PROCESSES

 

After collecting data from children, supervisors and parents, we can already move on to conflict analysis in order to gain a good understanding of the causes, people and issues involved in conflict. It is important to take the necessary time to understand conflicts before moving on to the formation of peace education clubs or taking any other action. We must avoid the approach often used in the history of witchcraft. Often in a situation where someone is accused of witchcraft, many people do not seek to analyze the conflict to know the history of the conflict but directly accept that the story is true. This makes the problem bigger and more complex, and sometimes pushes people to find solutions to a false problem.

 

It is helpful to work with the school management board including the principal, teachers, parents and/or students and a group of community members to discuss the history of the conflict affecting children and youth. Aspects to consider are its causes, who is involved, and so on. This allows to have several perspectives to the conflict. Teamwork in analysis is ideal. You can work alone but in this case, you may not see some important aspects of the conflict or problem. This can reduce the effectiveness of our analysis and therefore our intervention.

 

Several tools have been developed to assist in conflict analysis. For example the 3 Ps Triangle (People, Process, Problem).

 

  • 3 Ps

 

Understanding and analyzing any conflict is challenging. It is useful to have a framework that delineates the various aspects and facets of conflict. The following guidelines are developed based on three major aspects of conflict: people, process and problem. It is an analytical tool developed by Jean-Paul Lederach asking different questions about people, process and problem in order to analyse conflict.

 

People: refers to relational and psychological elements of conflict between people. This includes people's feelings, emotions, individual and group perceptions about the problem.

 

Questions to ask:

Who is involved in the conflict?; Who are the main parties to the conflict? Who are the secondary parties? How does an individual or group perceive the situation? How do they interact with each other? How do groups perceive conflict differently? Where is the conflict centered? Which individuals or groups have strong positive relationships with each other?

 

Process: refers to how decisions are made and how people feel about them. The decision-making process in a conflict is often one of the main causes because individuals may not appreciate the decisions that are made. When people feel that decisions have been made unfairly, it can develop a sense of powerlessness towards them and therefore they may decide not to support the decision. Sometimes people cannot openly reject the decision, but their behaviour can disrupt relationships in ways that create open conflict.

 

Questions to ask:

What factors are causing the conflict to escalate? What factors encourage peace? What methods are used to resolve the conflict? What is the conflict phase? How has the behavior of the different parties influence the conflict over time?

 

Problem: refers to the specific issues involved in the conflict. This may involve different values, opposing views on how to make a decision, conflicting objectives, and concrete differences regarding use, distribution or access to limited or scarce resources (land, money and time).

 

Questions to ask:

What are the root causes, major problems and effects of conflict? What are the issues in the conflict? Who are the people in conflict? What are the needs of the different parties in conflict? Are criterias mutually acceptable in the decision-making process? What might be some common values or interests in the conflict?

 

 PEACE EDUCATION CLUB ACTIVITIESs

 

  • Training of supervisors

 

The training of the supervisors can take 5 days depending on the time and means available. Note that this may vary from one organization to another, from one context to another. Other additional training can be organized to strengthen the capacity of supervisors as needed.

 

The training of trainers aims to strengthen their capacity with the knowledge and skills in conflict resolution and non-violence contained in the curriculum modules of peace education clubs. This training also gives them additional methodological tools so that they can effectively train children or participants in promoting culture of peace in schools and in the community.

 

Several learning approaches can be used, including role-play, demonstrations, small group discussions, drama, and appropriate videos during the session. It is important to ensure that these learning methods or tools carry a message of peace and non-violence. A good preparation of each of these approaches is very important. These approaches give participants a deeper understanding of the topic. During this training period, emphasis is placed on teaching methods, described in the methodology section of the manual.

 

  • Members' Sessions

 

During the sessions, participants are trained by the supervisor. The gatherings (meetings or sessions) of the peace education club, depending on the time available, may last one hour. Sessions should not exceed one and a half hours as children or participants may become tired. Holding meetings that last longer can cause children or participants to lose concentration. However, having meetings that are much shorter may not allow enough time for discussion or completion of activities. It should be noted that recommendations on duration may vary depending on the context and this is only a guideline. What is important is that the participants (children) understand the subject and know how to apply the knowledge acquired.

 

Participants are required to use the knowledge gained in three ways:

  • They must share this knowledge with other students in their class, school or other schools who are not members of the Peace Education Club.

  • They must share their knowledge with family and friends in the community.

  • Finally, they must apply this knowledge in their daily lives.

 

After each session or meeting, participants or students should report back. In this report, they should indicate the number of their classmates or school and friends in the community whose knowledge they have shared with. They should also include their parents' responses, and stories about how they generally applied the knowledge in their daily lives. These reports are presented to the supervisor during the training session. These compendiums are included in a single short-term report to be submitted to the coordination team after three months. Lessons learned are necessary because they help to see the impact of peace education clubs and help in the development of the program.

 

  • Parent Training

 

The members of the Peace Education Club Coordination in collaboration with the school leadership select influential and active parents in the community for training on Peace Education Clubs. This activity is important because parents not only need to understand what children learn through peace education clubs but they should also participate in promoting peace in the community. Training for all parents should take place on different dates to allow the coordinating team to monitor and periodically evaluate activities simultaneously. After every three months, parents are required to submit a report on the impact of the training received in their home communities.

 

 

  • Follow-up of Peace Clubs

 

Monitoring peace education clubs after they have been established is extremely important. This follow-up allows peace education club leaders to receive feedback that will help them become more effective trainers of the peace education club program. The coordination team has a duty to monitor and visit schools and communities where peace education clubs are practiced to see what is happening on the ground (in schools and communities). These types of visits encourage supervisors and children and allow the coordination team to assess the project's impact on the ground. The frequency of such monitoring depends largely on the number of schools and the size of the community concerned within a particular radius of action. But in general, each peace education club should be visited at least once a month by the peace education club coordinating team.

 

Additional activities :

 

Beyond the above activities, peace education clubs also do many other activities such as tree planting and exchanges between members of peace education clubs. Revenue generating activities can also be considered to meet certain project needs.

 

Peace Education Club Festival

 

The Peace Education Club Coordination Team could have a tradition of bringing together all Peace Education Club members once a year if security conditions allow. Of course, the availability of financial resources and logistics for such an activity will have to be taken into consideration. The festival can take place in one day: it can start from 9 am to 4 pm.

Festival activities include poems, traditional dances, debates, the presentation of works of art (drawings) with a message of peace, songs, theatre, testimonies and stories related to the impact of peace education clubs in schools and society. Guests should include school principals, religious representatives, community leaders, traditional leaders, government representatives and other institutions in the country and even in the region. The festival is an opportunity to promote peace.

  • Sports and cultural activities; such activities are organized to facilitate the transmission of messages of peace

  • Training of child leaders on specific topics.

 

  • Annual General Assembly of Peace Education Clubs

 

For the smooth running of peace education club activities, the coordinating team should hold two regular meetings annually. After every six months, it is important to review progress. At the end of the year it is important to organize a General Assembly to evaluate the impact and challenges of the project and plan for the future. As with monitoring, the General Assembly of all leaders of peace education clubs can promote cohesion among their different clubs. This gathering allows the sharing of ideas among leaders of peace education clubs and helps these leaders to create and strengthen support networks among themselves.

GENERAL OVERVIEW OF THE PEACE EDUCATION CLUBS CURRICULUM AND METHODOLOGY

 

  • Curriculum

 

The Peace Education Club curriculum contains eight chapters on various aspects of conflict, violence and conflict resolution. Generally, these modules can be presented or used in order; from the first chapter to the last. But, depending on the need and context, framers may feel free to present or use an appropriate chapter depending on the need or situation.

 

The chapters of the Peace Education Club Program are as follows:

 

  • Chapter 1 : Introduction

  • Chapter 2: Understanding Conflict (It contains 10 lessons)

  • Chapter 3: Understanding gender-based conflict (It contains 7 lessons)

  • Chapter 4: Conflict Resolution (It contains 7 lessons)

  • Chapter 5: Rights of the Child (It contains 1 lesson)

  • Chapter 6: Leadership (It contains 1 lesson)

  • Chapter 7: The path to reconciliation (It contains 9 lessons)

  • Chapter 8: Evaluation of the role of peace committees in schools (It contains 1 lesson)

 

  • Details on the lessons

 

Section on the Introduction of the Peace Education Club

 

The introduction should be read by supervisors before teaching. This part of the curriculum can help the supervisor to prepare and acquire additional knowledge. They may choose to share this introduction with the children to help them gain a better understanding of the topic.

 

Discussion Questions

 

Debates are a key element of peace education club sessions. They provide an opportunity for children or participants to discuss conflicts or situations that are relevant in society. Discussions also give participants a chance to gain a deeper understanding of the lesson or topic of the day. In addition, they create the opportunity to examine the application of knowledge on non-violent conflict resolution.

 

The questions in each lesson should be answered and discussed by the participants before the trainer/supervisor gives the answer. The answers in the curriculum are not necessarily good answers for every group, as contexts and experiences vary. The best way for children to learn something is to explore the ideas for themselves and discuss them among themselves. It is the job of the supervisor to help and guide them in the discussion if necessary and to make sure that everyone remains respectful and that everyone has a chance to contribute to the debate in a spirit of conviviality.

 

If there is a derailment in the debate, i.e. the discussion is off topic, the participants should be quickly brought back to the topic nicely. However, if the discussion is about important and relevant issues, such as a specific case of conflict that children are experiencing, children should be allowed to explore the issue and appropriate non-violent solutions. In all cases, the sensitivity of the issue must be taken into consideration. If the example is necessary, for example if it is aimed at the reality of the child's life, and therefore deserves consideration, the trainer/supervisor can stop the discussion gently and discuss it with the child in person after the session so as not to embarrass the child and in order to give him or her more necessary support or advice.

 

  • Activities

 

The activities in the lessons are important for children to better understand the topics. They are particularly important for students in elementary school, secondary school or in the community. The activities also allow participants to try peace strategies in a different way.

 

Small group work is often useful. Although they take a long time, it is important to realize their benefits. Small groups are good because of what they:

  • Allow children to relax and feel comfortable expressing their views, especially younger children.

  • Allow children to teach each other and apply the lessons in their lives.

  • To allow a deeper examination of the subjects.

 

During this small group work, the supervisor should visit all the groups and listen to the discussions among the members and help answer some questions or challenges by doing the exercise. After the group work, the children / participants should make a presentation in the plenary. The trainer (supervisor) should ask each group to choose a spokesperson to present the group's work.

 

  • Brainstorming

 

Brainstorming, is a process of examining a problem or conflict and proposing possible and varied solutions to solve that problem or conflict. Brainstorming allows all participants to offer ideas that are related to the theme. Brainstorming is a very useful tool because it helps us to think outside the usual solutions. At the end of the brainstorming stage, a series of solutions can be found and their application to the problem in question examined. If this exercise is used at the beginning of the lesson, it also helps the supervisor to know the level of the children/participants and to adapt the material to their levels.

 

  • Stories and role-playing:

 

Stories are great ways for children to learn. The use of stories makes it possible to give illustrations of the lesson in a more concrete and personal way. The stories of peacebuilders drawn from the context are to be encouraged. These are better adapted to children. Children need role models, like Patrice Lumumba, whom they can follow in their lives. They allow children to see how these principles are actually applied in real life, and offer children a lot of encouragement. They also enable children to see themselves as part of a great movement for peace and justice in the world.

Role plays are also useful and unique in that they allow children to experience the situation in a more interactive way. By acting like someone in a given story, we understand the situation better and that opens horizons.

 

The debates that follow after telling the story and role-playing are very important. They help children to deepen their knowledge.

 

  • Peace Education Club Methodology

 

The purpose of peace education clubs is not to ask children to memorize the exact principles or names of different problem-solving techniques. In contrast, peace education clubs aim to help children develop a new way of thinking about violence, conflict and peace, and help them develop skills that enable them to prevent conflict in their schools, families and communities, manage and resolve conflict through a non-violent approach. Children need to learn to think critically and creatively to deal appropriately with unexpected and complex situations. In other words, they need to learn peace-building and conflict transformation skills in order to respond to the many conflicts and cases of violence they will encounter throughout their lives.

 

The peace education club methodology is different from the usual classroom methodology. The Peace Education Club uses the dialogue methodology. This methodology is participatory and active. It allows the debate to take place between the children and their supervisors. However, the supervisor leads the discussion and ensures that the children learn the essential elements in each lesson. In this methodology the use of familiar examples to explain lessons is highly recommended.

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