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Event Reports

Conflict Prevention and Human Rights in Lebanon

Training and Graffiti in order to promote the youth in Al-Qaa

To reconcile Syrians and Lebanese, train the youth in conflict prevention and human right as well as to promote tourism, the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation worked toghether with the NGO Dawaer on behalf of the Bernhard-Vogel-Foundation in Al-Qaa, North Bekaa-valley. On the 9th and 10th of June, a final workshop taught the youth life skills with regard to human rights, conflict management and dealing with racism. Also, in a community project a graffiti artist from Beirut and teenagers from Al-Qaa created interactive wall paintings in order to raise awareness for similar reconciliation projects.

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As the final point of a project organized by the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation (KAS) in cooperation with the NGO Dawaer on behalf of the Bernhard-Vogel-Foundation, the participating youth managed a training in conflict prevention with around 20 children from Al-Qaa. The total project lasted several months and had the goal to teach Syrian and Lebanese teenagers skills with regard to human rights, conflict and racism as well as to bring together both groups. The trained youth will function as multiplier in the future, since they can pass on their newly learned skills independently.

During the workshop the Lebanese and Syrian volunteers imparted knowledge about conflict prevention and human right on the children in a playful way. In doing so they used several didactic methods such as role plays, short movies about bullying and pantomime.

The volunteers could draw on skills, which they had acquired in the previous stages of the project. Those stages included a training of the youth in December 2017 and workshop organized by themselves with around 80 children in February 2018. All in all around 20 volunteers have been trained during the project.

After the workshop, a community project took place, during which graffiti-artist Ahmad Mazloum created interactive wall paintings and drawings. During the projects, the young people helped him to paint some of the five walls in total (three big ones and two smaller ones) at public places in Al-Qaa. The young people not only participated in the painting, but also documented the work with videos and photos. Last year, they took part in workshops of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and the NGO Dawaer concerning media and photography.

The graffiti show a traditional situation – two women baking bread together – as well as four interactive pictures allowing the viewer to either become a puppet of two larger-than-life hands, to turn into an angel by standing between two wings, to blow away a dandelion, or to receive a bouquet of flowers.

Among other things, the community program intended to attract tourists and to promote conflict prevention projects in neighboring regions with a high population of refugees. Unfortunately, the Syrian teenagers, who had already attended the KAS media training beforehand, could not partake in the graffiti-project because an infectious skin disease had broken out in their refugee camp.

The reason for the engagement in Al-Qaa was a series of suicide attacks in the village during the summer of 2016, which severely strained relations between Lebanese inhabitants and Syrian refugees living there. The conflict prevention project was able to build a foundation of trust for overcoming these tensions and to train young people as long-term mediators of peace. Nevertheless, further projects will be needed to stabilize the developing trust between Syrian refugees and Lebanese youth in the long run.

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Dr. Malte Gaier

Dr +216 - 70 01 8080 +216 - 70 018 099


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