Staying Golden: the legacy of Sierra Leone’s “Golden Kids” radio show

Pascal Masuba was 11 when he became a radio reporter in Sierra Leone, right after the end of the civil war. What he learned at the time turned him into an activist for the rights of children.

Austrian Foreign Ministry Honors Search’s Grassroots Program in South Sudan

Our program in South Sudan won the Intercultural Achievement Award presented by the Austrian Government.

Young Reporters Become Radio Personalities in the Central African Republic

The radio show “Children in Action” is reshaping the conversation on children’s rights in the Central African Republic. Its producers’ story will surprise you.

Promoting peace and social cohesion in schools and communities in Kidal

The project funded by UNICEF had the objective of improving the access of girls and boys living in the region of Kidal to quality education. This study reports on a conflict analysis done in the region to identify key conflict dynamics, its sources, and key actors. It also reports on the effectiveness of the project in reinforcing the capabilities of community members, students, and teachers of using peaceful conflict transformation techniques, especifically the common ground approach.

The data collection approach was mixed, involving a survey, focus groups and individual interviews. Around 50% of students report learning about the importance of peace and social cohesion in schools. Although there was a disparity in percentages of learning about non-violence in different regions, there was no disparities in terms of gender, meaning boys and girls received the same information. The radio program “Children of Kidal for peace” is popular among the children of the regions surveyed. Overall, the majority of survey participants agree that the radio program touches upon subjects that concern them.

The most popular channels used to teach the Common Ground approach were sketches, radio emissions, and peace poems. The impact of these activities was also felt among community members and parents who report the activities help children address difficult but real issues that pose an obstacle for peace. As a recommendation, Search is encouraged to reinforce the Common Ground approach among teachers. Also create a network with the different districts where the project has been implemented to share knowledge and experiences between students.

‘On Est Ensemble’: Supporting Reconciliation and National Unity in Guinea

This evaluation is part of the overall project On est ensemble, which includes two subprojects. The first is “Rebuilding Together”: Community-Driven Reconciliation and Enhanced Communication in Guinea Forestiere, and the second project is “Votons pour la paix”: Supporting Participative, Transparent, Credible and Peaceful Elections in Guinea. Both projects have the aim of promoting reconciliation, conflict resolution, and social peace in Guinea.

The project “Votons pour la Paix” was implemented in all four regions of Guinea, contributing to participatory, transparent, credible, and peaceful presidential elections. Politicians’ rhetoric is considered the main factor influencing interethnic violence, along with lack of knowledge about the political process. The project has been effective in disseminating accurate and useful information about the electoral process through the media. Search’s media productions and the creation of a joint media platform composed by media professional and civil society organizations have provided the public with more accurate information, which is less prone to ignite violence. It has been effective in countering divisive political rhetoric. While media efforts are recommended to continue, other recommendations involve more inclusion of vulnerable youth groups and also the involvement of political leaders.

“Rebuilding Peace” was implemented in the Forest region, where interethnic hatred and traditional practices are the main factors that drive to violence.The project contributed to promoting reconciliation, conflict resolution, and social peace in Guinea. Search organized listening sessions with participants from different ethnic groups of its radio program Nimba. The sessions provided community members an important platform to voice their concerns and grievances, but also to hear other members needs and interests. Training sessions facilitated by Search successfully enhanced the capacity of young leaders on conflict resolution techniques based on the Common Ground approach, rumor management, and communication skills. The project has made a difference in community member’s knowledge about the sources of violence in their communities and especially ways in which they can be avoided.

Third Study of Reforms and Population Priorities in terms of Reforms in Guinea

This final evaluation and survey was part of the project ‘Governance and Responsibility of the Public Sector’ financed by the World Bank through the Unit of Coordination and Project Implementation. Its main objective was to reinforce government leadership and their strategic capacity to carry out reforms to improve the public sector.

Data collection included a document review from the previous two surveys conducted for this project, surveys conducted in households, to civil society organizations and civil servants, as well as focus groups. According to the household survey there was a 24% increase in the number of respondents declaring they know about the reforms taking place in the country. Being radio the main source of information for the population, the percentage of households that have listened to at least one of the radio emissions conducted by Search increased to 59%. The project was also relevant in term of attitude changes in public sector workers who have listened to Search’s radio emissions.

The recommendations include continuing Search’s communication activities on government reforms prioritizing television for the dissemination of information related to reforms. Additionally Search is encouraged to support local artists in the production of sketches about public sector reforms.

Peace Rising

With the help of our local staff’s training and mentorship, the young people featured in these testimonies became influential peacebuilders.