Capacity Development for Local Peace Structures in the Benishangul-Gumuz Region in Ethiopia

An assessment of Local Peace Committees in Benishangul-Gumuz Region in Ethiopia by the GIZ identified their capacities and potential to prevent violence through greater capacity development. The Berghof Foundation works closely with the GIZ and national partners in delivering support to these Local Peace Committees, particularly through increasing individual knowledge of the members of these committees on peacebuilding and conflict transformation, designing formats to increase peer exchange, creating team and relationship building opportunities, and establishing an inter-communal peace network.

The Benishangul-Gumuz Region (BGR) of Ethiopia is a federal state in the west of Ethiopia, bordering Blue Nile State in Sudan. Although the region has been relatively stable in the past, instability and conflict have increased in recent years. Like much of the region, food security is an increasing concern, amplified by conflicts in neighbouring countries (Sudan) and a large number of displaced persons. Conflicts over migration, access and management of natural resources, and land ownership have led to increased ethnic tensions and violence both within BGR and with its neighbouring regions (Oromia and Amhara). Historical marginalisation and the overflow of instability from Sudan and South Sudan have also increased volatility in BGR, especially near the borders. The GIZ has collaborated with the Government of Ethiopia and IGAD/CEWARN to address conflict prevention and mitigation in the Benishangul-Gumuz Region of Ethiopia.

The project is funded by GIZ.

The project comprises six activities:

  • Draft curricula for the trainings, carrying out desk research on the region, design criteria for committee participants and develop conflict analysis methodology.
  • Develop the curricula with the implementing partner at the first writing workshop, and provide technical backstopping for the first youth-focused training.
  • Participate in the first round of peace committee trainings to provide backstopping, and lead the second writing workshop to further develop and update the curricula.
  • Draft the regional conflict transformation strategy.
  • Support the facilitator for a community dialogue/peace conference, lead an advanced mediation training and establish the practitioners’ network, and facilitate a final writing workshop to develop the regional conflict transformation strategy.
  • Finalise the regional conflict transformation strategy.