In early March 2019, Peace Partners charity received almost £10K of National Lottery funding to help work with community and youth organisations to enable them to organise and facilitate the TPRF Peace Education Programme (PEP), throughout the UK. As a result, we are making the PEP workshops more widely available to the community irrespective of religion, age, gender, race, or any issues they may be experiencing such as poor mental health or homelessness. This is in collaboration with our partners and organisations who have a similar purpose; for them to share across their networks and social media; on the Peace Partners’ website and through e-bulletins and mailings.
Peace Partners has been working closely with communities affected by gang violence in South London and this is an area where we have recently concentrated our efforts to facilitate and run the Peace Education Programme. We have appealed to members of the wider community, youth leaders and organisations working with vulnerable people and community projects, to talk to us about becoming involved and for them to find out more about setting up this programme in their own organisations. To this end, in April we ran an event in Croydon with three different workshops, of which an introduction to the PEP was one. Several representatives were invited to attend and some spoke about their own efforts in their communities, including the Tutu Foundation, Ubuntu Round Table Project and Shanika Benjamin’s Young People Insight. There was a lot of enthusiastic interest in the PEP presentation from these people and from many other representatives and attendees.
Called a Conflict Resolution Workshop, this event led on to a five-week Training PEP, held specifically for those organisations who had shown interest. Several attendees from these organisations signed up and two completed the course after attending most of the ten workshops. This training PEP was also attended by participants who were familiar with the material and wanted to be clear about how to facilitate a PEP. We are very pleased to be able to expand our PEP teams to cope with the expected demand.