April 21, 2021 – Recently, the Whitaker Peace & Development Initiative (WPDI) commenced training another 100 community leaders from two townships in Cape Flats in Conflict Resolution Education (CRE). As two of the most historically marginalized communities in all of Cape Town’s metropolitan area, Bellville and Langa townships have struggled with widespread insecurity. However, in the coming weeks, WPDI will empower this cohort of aspiring peacemakers with tools they can use to help bring peace to their respective communities.
Over the next eight weeks, the 100 community leaders will strengthen their capacity to address conflicts and their underlying drivers and to have a better take at mediating conflicts. Once they complete their training with us, we hope that their experiences as leaders will be enriched by their participation in our program, with significant benefits for their respective townships.
Since the trainings started, the leaders have expressed to us how positively impactful the workshops have been for them. Nonzukiso, a 37-year-old community leader from Langa Township told us that “I have learned how to mediate conflicts, which I know will be useful when helping my community disentangle itself from disagreements. I fully comprehend the role I should play in the peacebuilding process.” Similarly, Reginald, a 47-year-old community leader from Langa Township spoke about how she “has learned about the importance of being impartial at all times, especially in how I identify sources of conflict.”
Over the next few weeks, the 100 community leaders will continue with their conflict resolution training, and we are confident that they will continue to hone their skills and develop tools that will allow them to play more constructive roles in their communities. As Anthony, a 31-year-old leader from Bellville Township, mentioned to us, “I am so happy with this training so far. I want to use my training to help my community end our existing conflicts and come together.”