OVERVIEW OF THE CONFLICT TRANSFORMATION
Events and occurrences of the last couple of years ranging from violent riot in U.K in 2011, violent protest in Spain, Bulgaria and Greece is constantly confusing young people as to the veracity of non-violent response to conflict. The on-going violent confrontation in Ukraine is a bad taste in every one’s mouth. Why international Youth Training on Conflict Transformation and Negotiations through Turbulence. Today ‘s world is challenging for young people: different and changing economic climate, skyrocketing youth unemployment, constant violent flash points across Europe with no clear end in sight and there is despair and natural attraction to use violent protest to either make a point or assert themselves. In this dire situations and circumstances youth workers play an important role in supporting young people in coping with personal, economic, social and intercultural conflicts. They can facilitate constructive learning outcomes and stimulate reflective perspectives, supporting young people in recognizing conflicts as part of an important learning process.
The project trained youth leaders’, managers and youth workers in a standardized conflict transformation and negotiation skills. The training was a departure from the usual conflict trainings rather it used the John Paul Lederach model pioneered in 1980’s which saw conflict as something that must not necessarily be resolved or managed rather but TRANSFORMED because conflict is natural and its neutral. The project redirected youth energy from reacting to conflict but responding and engaging with conflict and give them skills to analyse the WHY of conflict and be able to carry out right approaches to conflicts but because you cannot transform any form of conflict without adequate knowledge of negotiation skills. The training fused these two important concept and tools together. One of the aims of the training was to empower and equip young leaders and youth workers with negotiation skills. Everyone negotiates something every day. You negotiate with your family about where to spend the weekend. You discuss a raise with your boss. You try to agree with a stranger on the price of his house. We buy and sell, manage workers and work for managers, deal with friends, family, colleagues, merchants, organizations, and institutions all the time.
But how does one become an effective negotiator? The training revolutionised young people in Europe. The training not only re-launched young people and redirected their energies, it sought to make them change agents and unarmed army of young people skilled in Conflict Transformation and Negotiation through Turbulence. The varieties of countries chosen were to feed into the training methodologies being designed for the sessions. Experiential approach to learning. Young people were supported to be masters of their own learning. This approach combined with participatory methodologies allowed role plays, storytelling and new creative methods at responding to pressures and frustrations which will include but not limited to peace education, conflict analyses. Lenses of Conflict, reconciliation negotiation skills, and team building. The project took place in Brighton in U.K for a Period of ten days and countries included in the partnership are U.K, Spain, Poland, Bulgaria, Norway, Italy and Hungary. The training directly benefited 32 participants and the participants were supported to train twenty people to make an immediate multiply of 640 people and then goes into multiple of thousands.