Addressing the participants, Ms. Wasye Musyoni, Programme Manager, Norwegian Church Aid highlighted the importance of doing away with the era of “gerontocracy” where the older generations are favoured irrespective of their capacity or lack thereof, while the young people are placed at the background during solutions and decision making processes in the society. She recognized the centrality of faith inspired resources in bringing peace, stability and development to the region.
“We must find within ourselves the willingness to rise above the religious, political and ethnic influences and divisions which compromise neutrality and ability to work with a common accord.” – Wasye Musyoni
Violent Extremism is one of the biggest challenges facing humanity today. Several factors push and pull youth towards violent extremism. It is important to understand these drivers so as to prevent it.
Voices from the Youth
“Someone has to take the initiative in dealing with conflict. Like Wangari Maathai said “let us be like the humming bird that tries in its little way to put out the forest fire”.
“As people of different faiths, there are more factors that unite us, than those that divide us.”
“In order to solve our problems, we have to take ownership of the problem. It is important that we talk about these issues and look at our own fault in it.”
“Young people should participate in policy and strategy development. It is our common responsibility to engage with various stakeholders in doing so.”
“The importance of documentation should be emphasized so that programs and actions can progress without interruption due to change in leadership.”
“Ignorance breeds fear! We need to go above the barrier to understand the other person, even though it takes courage to do so.”
“Despite our differences we can still live together. For we may love our kind, but until we interact with others we may not understand and love the other.”
“Women and children are very important in peace building. They play a significant role that must not be ignored.”
“Patience is important in conflict transformation.”
“We should be encouraged to indicate that we have some things in common with people of other faiths, thus promoting our connecting factors.”
“If someone who is being lured by terrorist groups comes to you for guidance, the best way you can handle the person’s safety and security is by contacting the National Counter Terrorism Centre in Kenya.”