Global Peace Foundation’s ongoing peacebuilding work in Nigeria is healing communities traumatized by religious persecution and tribal and cultural conflict. Peacebuilding workshops centered around the theme of “One Family under God” help participants explore shared values across traditions to drive positive social change and build more inclusive communities.

Global Peace Foundation (GPF) Nigeria collaborated with the Christian Rural and Urban Development Association (CRUDAN) to host peacebuilding workshops in November and December 2023.

One training on the freedom of religion aimed to address religious conflicts and promote harmonious communities. The event brought together diverse communities to envision violence-free societies. Tear Fund Peace Foundation’s dedicated staff played a pivotal role in facilitating the training. CRUDAN and GPF Nigeria facilitators also skillfully guided participants through small group discussions, emphasizing freedom of religious choice, respect for human dignity, and envisioning a society free of violence. The facilitators’ expertise contributed to the program’s success, fostering a space where participants felt empowered to share their perspectives and commit to positive change.

Through this collaborative initiative, participants gained insights into shared values and committed to applying their knowledge in their communities. The training proved instrumental in achieving its objectives, with participants now serving as advocates, calling themselves Freedom of Religion and Belief agents for community cohesion. Together, they are championing service-oriented initiatives in their localities. The collaborative effort underscored the significance of partnerships in driving positive social change and building resilient, inclusive communities.

GPF Nigeria and CRUDAN also collaborated on capacity-building workshops to equip participants with mediation and reconciliation skills. The training improved inter-community relations and organized a dialogue forum to reduce conflict escalation on November 16, 2023.

Women and youth leaders fostered discussion on pressing issues at the community dialogue forum. The participants, empowered with mediation and reconciliation skills, actively addressed conflict within their communities. The forum served as a platform for dialogue, enabling the exchange of perspectives and developing collective solutions. Importantly, they agreed on a way forward, showcasing the tangible application of the acquired skills in real-life community scenarios.

The collaborative effort between GPF Nigeria and CRUDAN equipped individuals with valuable conflict resolution tools. It facilitated a forum where diverse voices converged, fostering a collective commitment to building harmonious and resilient communities.

GPF Nigeria and CRUDAN organized a Trauma Healing Training in December 2023, designed to navigate the complex dynamics of trauma, providing participants with valuable tools to recognize, cope with, and overcome the aftermath of deeply distressing events.

Integral to the program’s success was its seamless integration of the values and principles espoused by the One Family Under God campaign. By incorporating themes of forgiveness, love, trustworthiness, and the celebration of diversity, the training addressed the immediate concerns related to trauma and laid a foundation for long-term healing and reconciliation within the communities involved. This intentional alignment with the campaign’s core values contributed to a transformative experience, fostering an environment where participants could find common ground and embrace a shared vision of unity.

“The training was thought-provoking and eye-opening,” said Aisha, “I feel liberated after the forgiveness session, knowing that I have forgiven anyone who wronged me knowingly or unknowingly.”

The participants’ active participation and positive testimonies testify to the program’s efficacy. The openness displayed during the sessions and the willingness to engage with challenging topics indicate a genuine commitment to personal and communal healing. The recommendations put forth by participants further highlight the potential for the initiative’s sustained success and long-term impact. As participants advocate for the program’s expansion, mainly to engage more women in the community, the ripple effects of this training are poised to extend far beyond its initial scope, creating a positive legacy of resilience, understanding, and unity within the participating communities.

The Trauma Healing Training stands as a beacon of hope, showcasing the profound impact that collaborative, values-driven initiatives can have on the well-being and cohesion of communities recovering from trauma.

The original post appears on Global Peace Foundation. Global Peace Foundation is an international non-sectarian, non-partisan, nonprofit organization, which promotes an innovative, values-based approach to peacebuilding, guided by the vision of One Family under God. GPF engages and organizes a global network of public and private-sector partners who develop community, national, and regional peacebuilding models as the foundation for ethical and cohesive societies. Dr. Hyun Jin Preston Moon is the founder and chairman of the Global Peace Foundation.