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Tana at 10 High Level Meeting 2022

Managing Security Threats: Building Resilience for the Africa we want.

Youth and Women for Peace and Sustainable Development (YOWPSUD) was privileged to be part and parcel of the 10th Tana High Level Forum on Security in Africa tagged on the theme: - Managing Security Threats: Building Resilience for the Africa we want.

Robinson Jambo Chivila, the communications and I.T officer working also as the field officer represented the organization in the high end forum that brought together key actors from every corner of Africa in the discourse on security and resilience across multiple political, economic and social spaces. The goal was to explore issues with an aim of building a people-enabled peace, security and resilience in the line with the African Union theme of the year 2021 and 2022 respectively; that is, “Arts, culture and heritage” and “Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security.”

With different high end guest speakers gracing the event, the likes of H.E. John Dramani Mahama, former president of the Republic of Ghana and the chairperson of the Tana Forum Board. H.E Demeke Mekonen, deputy prime minister and foreign minister of the democratic republic of Ethiopia and the host of the Tana Forum. There were also representatives from different heads of state in the likes of H.E vice president of the republic of Uganda and H.E president of the republic of Somalia.

YOWPSUD being part of the discussions was key with the organization’s background and aim on addressing marginalization and inequality by advancing the role of youth and women in political, social and economic spheres. As far as the organization capacity building component is concerned, the organization humbly empowered the staff by allowing Robin Jambo to be part of the Tana-High Level meeting in Bahir Dar and the outcome is the expansion of diversified networks that came from the interactions during side events.

The organization extended its network to Consultores HODI, a non-profit organization from Mozambique and their line of work is more similar to YOWPSUD. They are working around sensitization on early warning signs to radicalization and countering violent narratives. It was after understanding YOWPSUD’s work done in the past 2 years on cross-border engagement on harnessing the potential of African Traditional storytelling in preventing violent extremism.

Another opportunity for YOWPSUD to tap is the art hub for human rights and dialogue, a concept done by United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) aiming at restoring the dignity of different cultures and facilitate national reconciliation bringing together fragmented communities in prevention of violence in post conflict contexts and amongst marginalized communities. From this concept, YOWPSUD is intending to align to it by conceptualizing the recommendations from the AU program on harnessing the potential of African traditional story in PVE. Also the organization can also draft the concept on Make Music Day KE and highlight the key results on the initiative which could be an opportunity for fund for the initiative. By doing this, YOWPSUD would have made efforts in realization of safeguarding the African heritage for sustainability.

In the context of policies review and implementation strategy, the organization’s representative connected with a research and policy specialist from Zimbabwe but currently working in South Africa who happen to be the brains behind all policy paper works for Tana Forum. Mr. Marcus Hollington, a vibrant youth who also is a creative. He expressed his views on the organization’s approach in most of the programs and initiatives and he happens to be interest in working together with the organization on reviewing of the National Music Policy done by the ministry of sports, culture and art to be of more help to the Kenyan Youth. Mr Marcus is currently working on tool to profile artists and helping them finding opportunities globally in order to showcase and making earnings from it. The tool is set to be launched in 2023 and from the discussions he was of the idea of having the YOWPSUD’s communications officer champion for ambassadorship for Kenya.

Also through the office of the Minister of Tourism headed by Abebaw Ayalew Gella, director general of the Ethiopian Cultural heritage authority, YOWPSUD can also have a joint concept in realization of the recommendations on digitizing the African stories in safeguarding the heritage and also in prevention of violence with Ethiopia having a gap in that we can see how best Kenya can work with Ethiopia.

Another opportunity for YOWPSUD is to share its scope of work to the Embassy of Denmark in Ethiopia and also share some of the success stories of the previous projects implemented in the essence of a connection/referral to the embassy of Denmark in Kenya. In addition, YOWPSUD should do the same on the Australian Embassy and New Zealand Embassy.

One interesting thing that the government of Ethiopia has done in promotion to climate change is by planting 1billion tress by 2022 which is a key take away to the organization. With the intentions on planning to partner with REREC in a livelihood project that will help youth build their capacity in seedling nursery preparation, growing the trees and selling the trees. Also on the other hand, it’s a motivation to follow up on the idea to partner with KENHA on their pilot project of marking the highways by planting of trees.

Reported by: Taylor Torch

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