1887

Women and Men in Partnership for Post-Conflict Reconstruction

Report of the Sierra Leone National Consultation, Freetown, Sierra Leone, 21–24 May 2001

image of Women and Men in Partnership for Post-Conflict Reconstruction
Following a decade of armed conflict that led to the virtual collapse of the country’s social, economic, legal and political fabric, the Sierra Leone National Consultation on Women and Men in Partnership for Post-Conflict Reconstruction, held in Freetown in May 2001, brought together 250 people from governmental and non-governmental organisations to discuss ways in which the war has impacted differently on women, children and men and how best to ensure gender equality in all reconstruction efforts. The papers in this report examine the following issues from a gender perspective:



political and public decision-making

security and peace-building

legal reform

violence and other crimes against women and children

poverty, economic recovery and empowerment

health, HIV/AIDS and STIs

settlement of displaced persons and rehabilitation of ex-combatants

the role of young people in post-conflict reconstruction.

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The Role of Young Women and Men in Post-conflict Reconstruction

I wish to share the South African experience in relation to the role of young people i n society and in particular to the role of young people in post-conflict reconstruction. In 1976 when I was in my second year of school, the townships erupted in flames. It was the first visible sign of youth protest. There was a sense that it was young people who were resisting apartheid education and refusing to be subjugated, and who took to the streets in large numbers. The decade from 1976 to 1986 was marked by considerable conflict and confrontation between young people and the state. Those of you who know something about South African politics would agree that it was also a time when the state (the white government) and the black community were in frequent clashes, but what we understood was that the struggle for power was around race.

English

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