Kick off of the International Peacebuilders' Forum 2016
We are excited to announce the opening of the International Peacebuilders’ Forum (IPF) 2016! In light of current trends in mass forced migration across the globe, this year’s theme of the forum is “Peacebuilding among people displaced by violence and war.” The aim is to provide a platform and safe space for reflexivity for practitioners in refugee and migrant work, and people from these communities to deepen contextual understanding, foster collaboration and joint action, and establish an international community of peers.
Janet Lim, former UNHCR Assistant High Commissioner for Operations, launched the forum 2016 on Wednesday, 20 July with her speech “Exploring the Big Picture on Refugees and Migrants.” She drew on her 34 years of experience to present an overview of the present situation, operational challenges, and changes within the migration sector of development. Among the changes she noted, she included the emerging relevance of acknowledging the agency of migrants themselves: “Another area of change, one that is close to my heart, is the need to recognize that displaced people, whether they be refugees, IDPs, or migrants are people who have capacities and need also to be given a chance to help themselves.”
On Thursday, 21 July, participants will have the opportunity to choose between seven workshops that address various relevant topics such as how to create calm in chaos and that are led by professional peacebuilders from around the world. Friday will offer time for sharing stories and for reflection. The afternoon session will encourage participants to brainstorm possibilities to progress, improve, and collaborate in their work. The forum will close on Saturday, 23 July, with a speech by Mpanzu Bamenga, former asylum seeker from Zaïre and founder of the Dutch Inclusion Leaders Network.