Think Peace Act Peace Students Conference: “Young Researchers chatting the way for sustainable peace in Buea Municipality”

On Wednesday November 24th, 2021, Local Youth Corner Cameroon with the support of UNESCO will be organising the think Peace, Act Peace Students Conference in the Buea Municipality under the theme “Young researchers chatting the way for sustainable peace in Buea Municipality” . This initiative seeks to promote peace, social cohesion and youth engagement in peace building by providing a platform for young people researchers to undertake an analysis of peace and social cohesion through evidence-based research as well as develop innovative ideas in fostering peace and social cohesion in Buea. The Conference will provide a safe space for students to build on evidence-based research and theoretical perspectives to discuss issues of peace and social cohesion within the Buea Municipality in the Southwest Region of Cameroon.
The conference will have a pre-activity which will be a call for academic paper competition for young researchers to produce articles with innovative ideas in fostering peace and social cohesion in Buea. The most innovative ideas and papers will be presented at the conference, rewarded with a cash price as well as mentorship from UNESCO and Local Youth Corner Cameroon. The Young researchers who submit papers will be supported by the organizers to create a “Youth Think Thank” research group
It will draw young participants (15 to 35) from academia, individual peace practitioners, regional and international organizations, civil society groups and faith-based organizations that are directly involved in peace and social cohesion in Buea. 100 participants will be mobilized including 60 young people students, 20 senior academics and 20 CSO actors and other stakeholders.

Objectives of the Conference

This Conference will provide a safe space for students to build on evidence-based research and theoretical perspectives to discuss issues of peace and security within the Buea Municipality in the Southwest Region of Cameroon.

Why the Activity
The current state of insecurity plaguing the North West and the South-West regions of Cameroon and the threats of spillover into other neighbouring regions have warranted UNESCO and other civil society stakeholders to explore alternative methods of conflict prevention to avoid escalation. Among these solutions is the putting in place of Early Warning/Early Response Mechanisms with a key component of engaging young people to lead this process through research and community engagements.
The Buea Municipality has been identified among the pilot communities for this initiative with key actions focusing on baseline studies, training and capacity building as well as engaging young people in research and community engagements. The Youth-led Organization; Local Youth Corner Cameroon (LOYOC) has been championing this process working with other youth-led organizations as well as academic institutions. These early warning/early response mechanisms initiative has as general objective toalert stakeholdersof the potential outbreak, escalation and resurgence of violent conflict, and promoting an understanding among stakeholders of the nature and impacts of violent conflict.
To achieve this LOYOC developed the Think Peace, Act Peace Initiative which seeks to promote peace, social cohesion as well as engage young people in undertaking evidence-based research on the context of peace and social cohesion as well as provide innovative ideas in fostering peace and social cohesion in Buea. The Key activities for this initiative include; – – – – Engage in a 1-month evidence-based youth-led research on peace and social cohesion.
– Organise a 1-month evidence-based research competition on innovative ideas on promoting peace and social cohesion for University Students.
– Organise a 1-day peace and security seminar at the American Corner- University of Buea Library
It seeks to create an alliance of good practices for peace in Buea, the conference also seeks to find answers for;
– What are the causes of conflict in the Buea Municipality?
– What is the role of Civil Society, Religious and Traditional Rulers in building peace in Buea?
– How can dialogue be used in resolving conflicts in Buea?

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