Stories of Hope from South Sudan

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  • Aug

    The RECONCILE Peace Institute

    Class OutsideRev. Shelvis Smith-Mather, the new principal of RPI, recruited a diverse class of students from across South Sudan for this year’s courses. RPI began in 2009 and currently offers three month certificates in Community-based Trauma Healing and Peace StudiesĀ and Conflict Transformation. Graduates from RPI return to their communities equipped with skills to address the wounds of war and build a culture of peace.

    Lucy Awate is a 2010 RPI alumni who currently works on staff at RECONCILE. “RPI transformed me personally, especially in regards to trauma.

    Most of us (in South Sudan) are survivors or victims. The course at RPI helped us becuase we shared our own feelings; it helped us to cope with the pain and also to know how to help others. Since graduating from RPI, I have now been volunteering at the hopsital to help counsel people who are traumatized.”

    Isaac Salah returned to his community after RPI with the skills to help heal families: “There are many suicides and many child soldiers who are here… When the ex-combatants and child soldiers return, their mind is not like the people in the community. Their mind is like the time of war… It is hard to integrate the child soldiers into the communities. I teach the families how to accept the children back, and I support the families to accept ex-combatants back. Families are broken, and I help them reconcile.”

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