NONVIOLENCE AND PEACEBUILDING


SONAD launched nonviolence workshops and trainings as the fourth programme in the Sudan in April 2005. The rationale for launching this programme was to impart the concept of non-violence because it has been used all around the world as a tool for peaceful transformation for a better world. It is often misunderstood as the only the absence of violence. It is true that non-violence is strongly against violence, but it is much more than that. It means to actively work for peace and justice. It is a potent tool that could be used to work for a stronger civil society, democracy, reconciliation and a peaceful society.

 

Therefore considering the Sudan context at the time, SONAD launched the first of its kind in history of Sudan, a non-violence education in 2005 with two basic and one training of trainers.  The financial and technical assistance came from the Swedish Fellowship of Reconciliation (SweFOR) and the Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America and Canada. The basic non-violence trainings have the following aims:


  • To understand the basics of non-violence in theory and practice
  • To learn about history of non-violence and how it is used today
  • To practice different methods of non-violence and how one can use it today
  • To discuss how different religions can support violence and non-violence to strengthen the non-violent aspects of our faith.

 

The first batch of non-violence participants who attended the workshops were 15 in number, mostly from Southern Sudan and Nuba Mountains. The participants were selected from the basic workshop attendees of April and September 2005. 


The workshops enhanced the knowledge and skills of the participants on how one could conduct a workshop on non-violence. The aims of the training of trainers’ workshop were to:

 

  • To understand more deeply the concept of non-violence
  • To learn how non-violence can be used in Sudan and the rest of the world today
  • To share experiences in teaching and as workshop leaders; and
  • To discuss strategies for upcoming workshops and non-violence progress.


Since then, many nonviolence trainings were held in Sudan and South Sudan in teams where the trainers who had been trained at that time were cooperating with more experienced trainers.

Impressions from a Nonviolent Conflict Transformation Training Project  in Yirol West County (Lakes State) and Mvolo County (Western Equatoria) in  2012

Group Photo after conclusion of Training of Trainers in Nonviolent Conflict Transformation