Event Reports

KAS-supported Civic Education Programme started in South Sudan

by Mathias Kamp

New Cooperation with the Salesians of Don Bosco

A workshop in Maridi for youth and women marked the beginning of a new civic education programme that KAS is implementing in South Sudan in collaboration with a new partner, the Salesians of Don Bosco.

On 9th July 2011 the Republic of South Sudan celebrated its independence and, with that, the birth of the world’s youngest state. With the new context also the work of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung in South Sudan, coordinated by the office in Kampala, entered a new phase. Having been active in the region for several years, KAS has now revived its work with a new approach and a new partner. The Salesians of Don Bosco have excellent structures in South Sudan and an effective network that reaches all the way down to the grassroots level. With support from KAS the Salesians are implementing a civic education programme targeting youth and women in urban and rural communities.

The first pilot workshop for both target groups was successfully held in Maridi from 26th to 27th July. Around 80 youth from the age of 12 to 20 years were trained for two days under the theme “Awakening the Youth to Face the Reality”. The highly participative workshop, facilitated by local resource persons, focused on topics such as human rights, civil rights and duties for youth and the role of the youth in society and community development. With the raised awareness and confidence and the knowledge acquired the trained youth shall become agents of change in their families and communities and take up their role as active and informed citizens in the new state of South Sudan.

In a parallel session, a group of around 80 women from communities around Maridi came together for a separate two-day workshop. Under the guidance of Mama Monica, the main facilitator, the participants had lively debates about the challenges facing their country after independence and how they can contribute to nation building and development. Participants agreed that the workshop formed a good starting point for them to take up their responsibility and become active citizens. Knowing one’s rights and confidently exercising them was considered to be the main pre-condition for such an active involvement in the social and political affairs of the country. At the end of the workshop the women agreed to come together on a regular basis and to form an interest group. In a first step, a committee was chosen to work out a structure for an organized women’s group.

Youth Workshop Maridi