My visit, useful links, UN Youth Day!

By Jan Oberg, TFF

Dear dear AYC friends!

I am excited at the thought of soon coming down to work with you. Together we can make your Club greater and greater…Here are 6 important things that I hope you will study before I come.

First, August 12 is the International Youth Day. Its theme is sustainability. Lots of stuff here. I believe the AYC must mark the Day with some kind of activity, statement or that we have an internal activity to discuss the relevant issues.

Second, the International Crisis Group has published a new report about Burundi’s peace process. I believe it will be interesting to you and that you must know about it and share its content with many others.

Third, are you familiar with the online Burundi Tribune? Perhaps it is an important place for you to keep up with daily events?

Fourth, here is a new book about Burundi, about life after violence. It is good that more boks are now coming about your country; last year came Nigel Watt’s excellent (I’ve read it!) “Burundi. Biography of a Small African Country” which even mentions TFF’s work …A third one, from 2006, is reviewed here.

Fifth, Mr. Karsten in Denmark who support the AYC is very interested in stories about reconciliation and forgiveness. He uses them at seminars and in articles in is own work for peace – tell people about the beautiful things people can also do to each other. I would like you to think of such stories you know or you have experienced yourselves, write them down or otherwise share them with each other and convey them directly to him or to me while I am with you.

Sixth and last, there is a new manual for training of trainers. I have not read it – perhaps it contains somewhat the same principles and ideas as the one you already have in your library (from dear Ina). But – this is different in the sense that it focuses directly on Rwanda and I can’t imagine that it will not tell a lot that could also enlighten and inspire you guys in Burundi.

I mention this Manual in particular because you have decided that I (and dear Chantal) shall do a lot of training with you. We’d be glad to do so. BUT…training and knowledge is ALSO a matter of self-study, of reading good stuff, of discussing it at study circles – of sharing and thus growing together.

There is a WEALTH of knowledge already in your little peace library. I know reading may seem more tedious and require more concentration and individual work but it is and remains absolutely necessary if you want to … well, be the change you want to see!

See you soon!

Best and amahoro, always!


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