STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN -- (Marketwire) -- 12/13/12 --
Youth peacemaker network to harness technology to promote peace-building capacities among South Sudanese youth with the support of Ericsson, andZain
Forest Whitaker, Oscar-winning actor, humanist and Goodwill Ambassador oftheUnited Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO),announced today the PeaceEarth Foundation will launch the Youth PeacemakerNetwork in South Sudan in cooperation with UNESCO Juba, the Ministry ofCulture,Youth and Sport of South Sudan, Zain and Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC).
The Youth Peacemaker Network will nurture a new generation of leaderscommittedto reconciliation and conflict prevention. Participating youth fromSouthSudan's 10 States will be trained by local and international experts inconflictresolution, leadership, peace and community building as well asmediationskills. These youth will forge peaceful, non-violent relationships withtheirpeers as they work together with their communities, engage with youthnation-wide, receive mentoring and training in business skills to promoteattractivelearning and skills-based opportunities.
"Reconciliation is a slow process, and it often takes as much time to getout ofa conflict as it took to get in one," said Forest Whitaker. "That's why itis soimportant to work with youth to promote the significance of education,personalempowerment and leadership to build peaceful conflict resolution skills andtechniques."
With 72 percent of the South Sudanese population under the age of 30, apeacefulfuture for the country is in the hands of the young. "Peace is anenablingfactor for the development and prosperity of South Sudan and to thebuilding ofa national identity, said Mr. Salah Khaled, UNESCO Juba's Head of Office."It isessential to empower young people and train them with the skills they needto betomorrow's leaders."
The program will use the field expertise of its key partners. UNESCO Jubawillfacilitate the secure access of youth living in remote areas. Ericsson willprovide mobile broadband connectivity, computers, and mobile phones fromSonyMobile, alongside basic ICT and social media training and tools forconnectingteachers and students through the global education initiative Connect ToLearn.Ericsson will provide on-site project management resources, Wi-Fi coverage,andthe Ericsson cloud computing solution to support the program.
In support of its belief that mobile connectivity is a tool of empowermenttobuild peace and a positive agent of change, Zain will provide internetaccessvia 35 mobile broadband dongles with capacity of 1GB per month, as well asmobile phone SIM cards for program participants.
PeaceEarth and UNESCO Juba are working together with South Sudan'sMinistry ofYouth, Culture and Sport as well as State-level ministries and YouthUnions toestablish computer centers in the State Capitals. These centres willhelpparticipants from the Youth Peacemaker Network to share theirexperiences andaccess additional trainings through the online platform www.peaceearth.org.Zainwill also support additional cooperation with governmental agencies tosupportand develop Sudanese youth.
Mr. Cirino Hiteng Ofuho, the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, saidaboutthe project, "The fact that young people will have a place to learn andpracticecomputer skills and communicate with youth from different States andcounties,will provide them with future opportunities while also buildingtheirrelationships and breaking down some of the misunderstandings whichlead toconflict in the first place."
The Youth Peacemaker Network will begin its initial roll-out byholding itsfirst training for young women and men from Jonglei. The training willtakeplace from 12-15 December 2012 at UNESCO Juba, and will coverconflictresolution, leadership, peace and community building, and mediation skills.
Over the next two years, the program will expand to include South Sudan'sothernine States and will continue to support the long-term capacitydevelopment ofthe youth as well as providing mentoring and business skills topromoteattractive alternative learning and skills-based opportunities for youth.
For more information on PeaceEarth and the Youth Peacemaker Network, pleasevisit www.peaceearth.org.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Forest Whitaker:
Award winning artist, Humanist and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador, ForestWhitakerhas dedicated most of his time to extensive humanitarian work. In 2011, hewasnamed UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Peace and Reconciliation for hispersonaldedication and work in the field of conflict resolution and his commitmenttopromote humanitarian ideals. He founded the Los Angeles based PeaceEarthFoundation in 2012, and in partnership with Rutgers University, he co-founded ofthe International Institute for Peace under the auspices of UNESCO. In 2007hereceived the Cinema for Peace Award for his selfless and ongoing advocacyforchild soldiers, as well as his work with inner-city youth. He was alsoawardedthe Humanitas Prize in 2001. Currently, he serves as a spokesperson for theUgandan child soldier orphanage Hope North, and is a board member of thePresident's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH). For moreinformation, join the conversation @ForestWhitaker.
About PeaceEarth Foundation:
The PeaceEarth Foundation is dedicated to peace-building and communityempowerment in areas of conflict everywhere. Founded in 2012 by AcademyAwardwinning actor Forest Whitaker, the PeaceEarth Foundation works to engage,empower and inspire youth, women, and global citizens to promote peaceacrossthe planet. Through on-the-ground programs in Africa and the United States,thePeaceEarth Foundation helps societies affected by conflicts and violencetransform into safe and productive communities. For more information, go towww.PeaceEarth.org and join the conversation on Twitter @ForestWhitaker.
About UNESCO Juba:
UNESCO's mission is to contribute to the building of peace in the mindsof menand women. UNESCO Juba is working together with the Ministry of Culture,Youthand Sport and the Ministry of General Education and Instruction, tointegratepeace building into educational planning and delivery. The Office'sprioritiesinclude increasing literacy rates, promoting lifelong learning,mobilizingscience knowledge and policy for sustainable development, addressingsocial andethical challenges, fostering cultural diversity, intercultural dialogueand inbuilding an inclusive knowledge society through information andcommunication.
Zain is a leading telecommunications operator across the Middle East andNorthAfrica providing mobile voice and data services to over 41.282 millionactivecustomers as of 30 September, 2012. With a commercial presence in 8countries,Zain operates in the following countries: Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait,SaudiArabia, Sudan and South Sudan. In Lebanon, the company manages 'touch' onbehalfof the government. In Morocco, Zain has a 15.5% stake in Wana Telecom, nowbranded 'INWI', through a joint venture. Zain is listed on the Kuwait StockExchange (stock ticker: ZAIN). For more, please email email@example.com orvisit:
About Connect To Learn:
Connect To Learn is a global education initiative launched in 2010. With agrowing portfolio of partners now on board, Connect To Learn was designedas apublic/private partnership to promote access to a 21st century secondaryeducation for everyone with a special emphasis on girls. The gender focusis dueto the challenges girls face in completing their education globally,despite theenormous economic and societal benefits gender parity in education enables.Connect To Learn aims to propagate practical solutions to ensure thatpeopleworldwide have access to education, providing secondary school scholarshipsandother support to keep girls in school, and implementing mobile broadbandconnectivity in the schools they attend to improve access to learningresources.Connect To Learn is a non-profit venture catalyzed by The Earth InstituteatColumbia University as Scientific Advisor, Ericsson as lead ICT partner,andMillennium Promise, an international 501c3, as administrative partner, andotherorganizations and individuals providing vital contributions. For moreinformation, please go to www.connecttolearn.org. Connect To Learnmultimediacontent is available at http://www.connecttolearn.org/media/video-library
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Youth Peacemaker Network launched in South Sudan:http://hugin.info/1061/R/1664686/540038.pdf
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