Across Ethnic Boundaries: Promoting Regional Reconciliation in Acholi and Lango Sub-Regions

Across Ethnic Boundaries is a one year initiative that focuses on promoting community conflict memory and fostering reconciliation at community and regional level beginning in January 2015. With support from USAID-SAFE, the project is a replication of best practices and learning from the Bearing Witness project, a local truth telling and memory project implemented by JRP in Atiak sub-county in 2014.

The rationale for the project is that Lango and Acholi sub-regions experienced the heaviest violations during the war between the government of Uganda and LRA. This led to the fragmentation of the social fabric across the ethnic groups in northern Uganda including growing tension between the Acholi and the Langi. The project targets places where widespread violation of human rights occurred and involves grassroots communities and local leaders as well as traditional, religious and government officials.

We hope to mark the beginning of regional reconciliation and the best practices from the project will be replicated in all of northern Uganda.

To foster social cohesion and regional reconciliation JRP’s Community Mobilisation department implements the following activities.

Conducting a survey on regional reconciliation using Lango and Acholi sub regions as case studies.

Establishing peace structures (CORE team) to build community leader’s capacity for memory and reconciliation and to work with the local communities on memory projects and foster reconciliation. While implementing memory projects there will be exchange, learning and solidarity visits among different victims’ communities are conducted within Acholi and Lango sub-regions.

Conducting community dialogues on regional reconciliation themes to gauge the perceptions of communities on the need for and mechanisms to be adopted to foster reconciliation among different communities and ethnic groups. Dialogues provide the opportunity to grassroots communities to share their conflict memories and obstacles for reconciliation and enables them to give their opinion on how to deal with such legacy.

Training on transitional justice concepts conducted with religious and traditional leaders from Lango and Acholi sub-regions to build their capacity and enhance their involvement in peace building programs from a victim-centered point of view.

Holding targeted public dialogues on regional reconciliation for key stakeholders responsible for reconciliation and peace building in Lango and Acholi sub regions. Sub-regional dialogues are organised as well to bring together cultural, opinion, religious leaders to share experiences of conflict and post conflict challenges from their communities and identify roles that they can play in fostering regional cohesion.

Target areas

  • Gulu district – Lukodi, Burcoro, Odek
  • Amuru district – Atiak and Parabongo
  • Lira district – Barlonyo
  • Aleptong district – Abia

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