Series of photostories make local voices heard on DRC conflict

London, 2 December 2013: International Alert, Local Voices and Search For Common Ground are proud to announce the launch of their joint project Local Voices – Congolese Communities & The Kivu Conflict.

Through a series of weekly publications using personal testimonies and photographs, the project strives to give a voice to local people, from warlords and youth to displaced women and local authorities. The project focuses on sensitive issues such as armed groups, the weakness of state authorities, or tensions between ethnic communities, and places the reader in the daily lives of the communities most affected by armed conflict.

Local Voices aims to inform the general public as well as policy makers about the dynamics and triggers of violence in eastern Congo and aims to put local populations at the center of concerns.

For Alexis Bouvy, project director and co-founder of Local Voices, the project is about...

“...Giving a voice to populations who have no opportunities to share their experiences with armed conflicts, to express their concerns, their difficulties, their frustrations and their fears.”

Maria Lange, DRC country manager at Internationa Alert says:

“The exclusion of Congolese people from decision-making has been one of the obstacles to peace in DRC. Giving them a voice is an important step when it comes to building peace.”

Our photostories will be published on International Alert's website from 5 December 2013:

For the full press release (in English or French), please download the attached document.

CONTACT US

Maria Lange, DRC Country Manager at International Alert

mlange@international-alert.org

Ilaria Bianchi, Head of Communication at International Alert

ibianchi@international-alert.org

ABOUT US

INTERNATIONAL ALERT

International Alert is one of the world’s leading peacebuilding organisations. We help people find peaceful solutions to conflict and have nearly 30 years of experience working in over 25 countries around the world to build peace.

We have been working in eastern DRC for 13 years, where we integrate peacebuilding with local development programmes in order to solve conflicts linked to natural resources, identity and power. See our website for more information: www.international-alert.org.

LOCAL VOICES

Local Voices is dedicated to telling and sharing human stories that could shape a better understanding of contemporary issues and foster positive changes among societies. By communicating to a wide audience the daily realities of people experiencing difficult and complex situations, sometimes in some of the most remote areas of the world, our action and website are meant to build bridges between local communities, a global audience and policy makers. Our objective is to foster a better - and more human - understanding of key international issues, and especially their local dynamics and effects.

SEARCH FOR COMMON GROUND

Founded in 1982, Search for Common Ground works to transform the way the world deals with conflict - away from adversarial approaches and towards collaborative problem solving. We use a multi-faceted approach, employing media initiatives and working with local partners in government and civil society, to find culturally appropriate means to strengthen societies' capacity to deal with conflicts constructively : to understand the differences and act on the commonalities. For more information, see our website: www.sfcg.org.

Photo: Local Voices 2013 with International Alert & Search For Common Ground