Evaluation of Internationale fredsprojekter (International peace projects)
Over the period 2008-2012 the ROCKWOOL Foundation supported international peace-building projects in Lebanon, Burundi, Uganda and Nepal. The basis for this support of peace-building initiatives in countries with a long history of violent internal conflicts was the development of new methods of involving children and young people in particular in the work of peace-building, giving them tools for conflict resolution and for promoting peaceful coexistence.
Lebanon: The evaluation was carried out by the Intercultural Management Institute (IMI), American University, and was aimed at documenting the experiences that the coaches, the participating children and the children’s parents had had through their participation in the activities organised by the CCPA. In addition, the evaluation process studied the potential value of involving children and young people actively in peace-building initiatives, and aimed to assess the effects that the establishment of numerous football clubs has had on strengthening democratic and intercommunal values among the participating children and adults. The SFCG project has not been evaluated.
Burundi, Uganda and Nepal: The evaluations and the evaluation briefing notes are the work of Tana Copenhagen ApS. The aims of the evaluations were to assess the projects in terms of the following: 1) the use of innovative methods in mobilising children and young people in peace-building work; 2) the impact of the projects on conflict management and the promotion of peaceful coexistence; and 3) the potential for extending the use of the methods and tools to other situations.
The evaluations all utilised qualitative methods to collect information, primarily from the children and young people who participated in the projects, but also from employees in the local organisations responsible for implementing the projects and from parents of the project participants. Individual interviews and, in particular, focus group interviews were used to collect information from the children and young people involved. Project documents and other background materials were analysed to form part of the data for the evaluation.
Lebanon: The project demonstrated that there are good opportunities for voluntary club work in Lebanon, with the establishment of over 100 football clubs during the project period. These football clubs gave children increased opportunities to meet across ethnic and social divides. There are also indications that the children achieved greater understanding of factors such as self-discipline, tolerance and conflict management through their participation in club activities. There is general recognition of the abilities of the volunteer coaches to engage the children in training activities in an inclusive manner. However, it was not possible to demonstrate on the basis of the existing data that the CCPA’s activities contributed to strengthening civil society and promoting peaceful coexistence.
Burundi, Uganda and Nepal: The projects had contributed to increased understanding amongst the young people involved of the causes of conflict and of their own opportunities to act and to find solutions to disputes. In addition, they had resulted in improvements in the application of methods and tools for conflict resolution and, particularly in Burundi, increased involvement of young people in traditional conflict resolution processes. A derived effect of all three projects was a strengthening of the social capital of the young people involved, enabling them to work together to improve their conditions of life. Even though the approach was not particularly innovative overall, innovative elements were identified in individual projects, such as the decision to involve relatively resource-strong young people, and to avoid providing direct financial support for the groups’ activities.
Evaluation of ADRA Youth for Unity Programme, Burundi
Evaluation of Caritas Youth against Conflict Programme, Uganda
Evaluation of RTC/CWIN Youth and Creative Conflict Transformation Project, Nepal