In the Field
Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Mandira Raut and Today’s Youth Asia
A short profile of Mandira Raut, projects director and producer with Today’s Youth Asia, can be found on page 9 of the Fall 2012 issue of the Peace & Justice Compass newsletter. The newsletter also features a recap of the IPJ’s recent reintegration work with former Maoist combatants, and an update on the IPJ’s ongoing community policing work in the Terai (page 5).
IPJ Field Mission – Biratnagar, Birgunj and Kathmandu
From November 16 to December 4, Deputy Director Dee Aker and Nepal Program Officer Chris Groth traveled to Kathmandu and Morang, Parsa and Sunsari Districts as part of the IPJ’s Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative. In Kathmandu, negotiation skills trainings were held with members of the Nepal Police, and with women security leaders from the Nepal Armed Police Force and former Maoist combatants. In the Terai region, the IPJ held a community policing workshop with members of the Nepal Police from Bara and Parsa Districts. Program Officer Zahra Ismail joined the IPJ team in Biratnagar, and together with Aker held a training with women leaders that focused on developing strategies for increased community engagement. Groth also conducted roundtable interaction programs at several schools in Parsa District, participated in World AIDS Day events with local partner Sano Paila, and worked with local colleagues to film interviews with youth that will be used to produce a documentary film for the IPJ’s WorldLink Program. In addition to Sano Paila, the IPJ was also assisted by local partners Today’s Youth Asia, Women for Peace and Democracy – Nepal and AIM-Nepal.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Mandira Raut
In preparation for WorldLink’s 16th annual Youth Town Meeting (YTM), “The Power and Influence of Media,” Mandira Raut of Today’s Youth Asia, an international media outlet based in Nepal, met with students at three local high schools. A partner of the IPJ’s Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative, Raut led in-depth discussions about media tools and youth empowerment.
IPJ Supports the Delisting of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)
The IPJ supports the action taken September 6 by the U.S. State Department to revoke the designation of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist entity, and as a “terrorist organization” on the Terrorist Exclusion List. The IPJ, through the Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative, continues to encourage and promote peaceful dialogue and engagement among all political parties in Nepal.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Today’s Youth Asia
IPJ country partner Today’s Youth Asia recently launched a new nationwide youth debate program, “Nepal’s Top 7 Debaters.” The competition, which is the first of its kind in Nepal, involves youth debaters from three age groups: grades 7-9, grades 10-12 and undergraduate college students. All competitions are aired twice a day on national television and radio via Nepal Television Plus. Footage from all TYA programs, including the youth debate competition, can be found online at the TYA Channel.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Sano Paila
IPJ country partner Sano Paila, in collaboration with Multicultural Center Prague, announced the launching of the La Ngonpo (“Meeting Point”) project. The project is a multicultural international education program designed to connect students in Nepal, India (Ladakh) and the Czech Republic (Prague). The program allows students to discuss global issues within their classrooms, and then engage in an interactive online dialogue with students in the partner countries. This is Sano Paila’s first national project, as it involves schools in Kathamandu, Kavre and Parsa Districts.
San Diego World Affairs Council (North County Chapter)
On June 14, Dr. Donald Gragg, a specialist in addiction medicine, gave a presentation to council and community members entitled “Nepal: Nuggets of Hope in a Devastated Nation.” Dr. Gragg spoke about his experiences traveling with an IPJ team to Nepal in November 2011, highlighting the positive impact being made by several NGOs despite the day-to-day challenges that they face. During the interactive dialogue portion of the presentation, IPJ Deputy Director Dee Aker and Nepal Program Officer Chris Groth joined Dr. Gragg to discuss the IPJ’s recent field work in Nepal and the current political instability in the country.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Women for Peace and Democracy-Nepal
A short profile on one of the IPJ’s partner organizations in Nepal, Women for Peace and Democracy – Nepal, can be found on page 4 of the Spring 2012 issue of the Peace & Justice Compass newsletter.
IPJ Field Mission - Birgunj, Ghorahi and Kathmandu
From April 19 to May 3, Deputy Director Dee Aker and Nepal Program Officer Chris Groth traveled to Dang and Parsa Districts as part of the IPJ's Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative. A two-day workshop was conducted with emerging leaders in Dang District (Ghorahi), and two other workshops were held with village leaders, government officials and local police in Parsa District (Nichuta and Birgunj). The workshops focused on conflict resolution, negotiation and communication skills. The IPJ team will also held individual meetings with leaders from civil society and the political and security sectors in Kathmandu, Birgunj and Ghorahi. The IPJ was assisted by local partners Sano Paila, Today’s Youth Asia and Youth Foundation Nepal.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight – Mandira Raut
IPJ local partner Mandira Raut (Projects Director and Producer, Today’s Youth Asia) was featured in Women LEAD’s Inspiring Nepalese Women Blog Series.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight - Sano Paila
IPJ country partner Sano Paila recently received two awards: the Birgunj Chamber of Commerce and Industries Certificate of Appreciation, presented by the Office of the Prime Minister, and the Social Development Award, presented by Youth Foundation Nepal (YFN). Raksha Nepal, an anti-trafficking organization founded by previous IPJ program participant Menuka Thapa, was also honored by YFN.
IPJ Country Partner Spotlight - Women for Peace and Democracy-Nepal
IPJ country partner Women for Peace and Democracy – Nepal recently completed the first year of a two year field project, “Socioeconomic Empowerment of Women and Marginalized.” The project is designed to enhance living conditions of over 300 socially excluded women in Sarlahi, Makwanpur, and Chitwan districts by increasing their capacity and involving them in collaborative income generating activities and community development programs.