The Intamenwa or Indivisibles! An Event to Mobilise Youth for Peaceful Elections in 2015

 Under the support of USAID, through Search for Common Ground Burundi (SFCG), CEDAC held an event in the course of the Intamenwa Project in Bubanza Province. The event began with a march through the city of Bubanza where between 4,000 and 5,000 people, predominantly youth, showed their support for the need for peaceful dialogue and an election free from violence. The march wound its way through the city and eventually came to a conclusion at the stadium of Bubanza where they were met with a warm welcome and events for the afternoon.

The event was a huge success, with welcoming speeches and shows of support for the programme from Mr Isaac Ndayisenga, General Director of the Interior Ministry and by Mr Anselme Nyandwi, the Governor of Bubanza who also showed his solidarity for the event. Mr Eric Niragira from CEDAC and Ms Floride Ahitungiye, the representative from SFCG explained the importance of the programme as a vehicle for developing platforms for youth groups to freely express their ideas without the fear of politically motivated and often violent reprisals.

Read more: The Intamenwa or Indivisibles! An Event to Mobilise Youth for Peaceful Elections in 2015

Flooding in Northern Bujumbura has Affected Many: CEDAC Investigates

The night of Sunday, 9 February 2014, was a beautiful warm evening in Bujumbura until about 8pm when a savage storm blew in. The storm started with thunder and lightning, then the rains began. It rained very heavily and as time went on it began to flood northern parts of Bujumbura, including Kamenge, Kinama, Buterere and Ngagara. The worst affected areas are Kamenge, Kinama and Buterere where there was extensive damage to property and many lives lost.

In these regions the Centre for Training and Development for Ex-combatants (CEDAC) operates a program of psychosocial support network for women living with disabilities and female survivors affected by war. The psychosocial support programmes run by CEDAC leads to psychosocial assistance in either an individual or group setting around income generating activities. Today CEDAC has travelled out to meet with both peer-to-peer support workers and beneficiaries of the programme to evaluate the impact that the storm and subsequent flooding had.

Upon arrival in Kamenge, we were met by road workers and locals repairing the damage around the market area. The whole area was affected by the storm which severely damaged the market, creating a flood that washed away many of the houses in the surrounding area.

Read more: Flooding in Northern Bujumbura has Affected Many: CEDAC Investigates

A Celebration in Support of Those Living with Disabilities or HIV/AIDS

On 8 December, 2013 CEDAC organized in conjunction with Action On Armed Violence (AOAV), a combined celebration for the international events dedicated to people with disabilities and those living with HIV/AIDS. This celebration took place in Rutegama Commune, Muramvya Province. This is one of the many provinces in which CEDAC has implemented projects designed to assist in the psychosocial support for women living with disabilities caused by the civil war.

This event was organized to highlight the plight of those living with disabilities, and to bring this issue to the attention of the national government. The government of the Republic of Burundi, although having signed the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has yet to ratify the convention and thus bring it into law.

Read more: A Celebration in Support of Those Living with Disabilities or HIV/AIDS

Advocacy for the Recognition of Disabled Women's Rights

After over a decade of violent civil conflict, Burundi is now in the post-conflict phase, from a humanitarian emergency to the difficulties of sustainable development. It is necessary to take into account the rights of women living with disabilities. These women are indeed still stigmatized, discriminated against and deprived of their basic rights as human beings. They can all too easily become prey to economic and social problems, slowing not only their own personnel development, but also that of their communities.

On 26 April 2007, Burundi committed to the rights of disabled people by signing the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Since then, six years have passed without any further action been taken. This important commitment to protecting the rights of not only women, but anyone living with disabilities has not been presented to members of parliament for approval; a necessary step for ratification and thus passing into law. Specifically, the ratification of the CRPD will restore much needed  human rights to those living with disability such as access to education and care, freedom of movement and the participation in social and political life.

Read more: Advocacy for the Recognition of Disabled Women's Rights

CEDAC in Partnership With AOAV Tackle HIV/AIDS

 

HIV/AIDS is one of the most grievous proiblems threatening the health condition in Burundi. According to research carried out by HIV Insite, an origination facilitated by the University of California, in 2009 the number of people living with HIV/AIDS in Burundi is approximately 180,000 with an adult HIV prevalence rate of 3.3%.

In partnership with Action On Armed Violence (AOAV), CEDAC tackles HIV/AIDS by raising communities awareness to the threat posed by HIV/AIDS and techniques in helping to prevent the disease. In Bujumbura, from 20 to 22 November we gave more than 30 of CEDAC’s peer supporters from 5 communes an intensive three-day training course in HIV/AIDS prevention. It aimed at increasing the awareness of peer-supporters to the disease so that they can actively engage in awareness programs relating to HIV/AIDS prevention within their own communities.

Read more: CEDAC in Partnership With AOAV Tackle HIV/AIDS

The Meeting in Phoenix on November 12

          Meeting started by an introduction for each one of them. Eric told them what CEDAC means and its work in Burundi. As he said, CEDAC is a nonprofit organization working in armed violence reduction and victim assistance. He explained that many campaign against illegal arms were organized in Burundi and CEDAC participated in different UN meeting on arms in New York.  

The victim assistance program consists on empowering conditions of life of victims in:

-Economic reintegration, psychosocial support by using peer to peer support and Gender based violence He ended his speech by saying that CEDAC is starting ambassadorial program around the world with two main objectives:

Read more: The Meeting in Phoenix on November 12

CEDAC Leads Economic Empowerment Project with Support of UNDP in Cibitoke Province, Burundi

On 5 and 6 November 2013, in cooperation with the UNDP Burundi, CEDAC staff conducted a field visit to Cibitoke province. In Cibitoke, we work on the second phase of a wide-scale economic empowerment project for conflict-affected people.

The goal of this project is to bring a significant improvements to people’s livelihood in Cibitoke, since it has supported more than 1,000 beneficiaries for two and half years. During the first phase of this project which ran from June 2012 and was completed in December 2012, CEDAC brought people together and organized 72 groups of beneficiaries in Cibitoke province. Each of the groups must consists of 10 to 20 people, including ex-combatants, widows, former internally displaced peoples (IDPs) and others from different ethnic backgrounds affected by the conflict.

Read more: CEDAC Leads Economic Empowerment Project with Support of UNDP in Cibitoke Province, Burundi

Mr. Niragira, the Founder and Legal Representative of CEDAC Visits America

It was 30 October, 2013 when the legal representative of CEDAC flew to the United States of America.

The CEDAC’s Ambassador in the United States of America, a Mr. Edward Hakizimana invited Mr. Eric Niragira to participate in a series of events. The conferences were for advocacy and the lobbying of funds for projects to assist vulnerable victims of conflict in Africa. The events were held in Tucson and Phoenix, both major cities in the state of Arizona, America.

The presence of Mr. Niragira (the founding member for CEDAC), his active participation in the activities has helped to motivate stakeholders who want to assist in the peace-building process. It is noted that Mr. Niragira has already had meetings with the African community in Tucson. This has included the Archdiocese, Ronald McDonald House Foundation and representatives from the Protestant church.

Read more: Mr. Niragira, the Founder and Legal Representative of CEDAC Visits America

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