The programme is in its second phase of implementation which runs up to 2020. Acknowledging that the populations of the region are the authors of their own peace, the programme established permanent dialogue groups (GDP) to facilitate cross border exchanges. The dialogue spaces serve as a platform where communities can openly discuss the root causes of conflicts as well as propose solutions to address these challenges. We seek to establish a framework that will help rebuild and reinforce trust as well as deconstruct negative stereotypes between Burundians, Congolese and Rwandans. The dialogue groups have helped develop consensus-based and locally-owned solutions, and have provided a space for decision makers to connect with and consult the local population on their needs, priorities and understanding of conflicts that afflict the region.
In addition, the programme is working towards creating a movement of peacebuilders in the region to create greater impact. It is in this light that it is encouraging GDP members to carry out independent outreach activities. The GDP members have gradually been recognized as peace agents among their communities and within the region. Decision makers have on several occasions engaged them to better understand the needs and priorities of their communities. Some of them have also been engaged as mediators within their communities. .
Interpeace implements the “Cross-Border Dialogue for Peace in the Great Lakes” programme in partnership with six partner organizations from the region: the Centre d’Alerte et de Prevention des Conflits
(CENAP) in Burundi; Never Again Rwanda
(NAR) in Rwanda; and Action pour la Paix et la Concorde
(APC), Pole Institute
, Centre d’Etudes Juridiques Appliquées (CEJA) and Réseau d’Innovation Organisationnelle
(RIO) in the DRC.