By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
Caritas Sierra Leone, through their Justice for Peace Commission, has trained 30 animators from 15 slum communities on election violence, early warning signs and cyberbullying and how to prevent violence against women and promoting women’s participation in the 2023 General.
Speaking yesterday, March 28, at the opening of the two-day training session, at Twin Hall Center, Hastings, Programs Manager, Caritas Sierra Leone, Justice for Peace Commission, Eliza O. Sillah, said a problem in the community is a problem for every household in that community.
She said the training of the 30 community animators selected from 15 communities in the rural and urban districts is to implement a project funded by Trócaire titled, Preventing Violence Against Women and Promoting Women’s Participation in the Electoral Processes for 2023 general elections.
She said the 30 animators were selected from the 15 slum communities because, those are the communities that are highly populated with divers’ kind of people including, youth, women and people living with disability.
She said there is high rate of violence and drug abuse in those communities, noting that because of the vulnerability of those low income and unemployed people that are living in the slum areas makes them easily to be used for the purpose violence during this time of elections.
She said in the next 12 months the animators are going to be serving as point of contact for Caritas Caritas Justice for Peace Commission, in their communities and also ensure that their communities are safe and free from political violence.
She said they are also going to be working to ensure women’s participation during the elections and also ensure that people with disability access election facilities and also participate fully in the electoral process.
She said the two-day training will help will help capacitate the animator to be able to detect early signs of violence within their communities and know how to report them and where they can report it, noting that it is a training that will give them a broader understanding and also look specifically in the aspect of the gender lens.
One of the participates Dominic Osman, a Community stakeholder in the Newton Community said the training will be able to help them to go back to their communities sensitize their people and encouraged them to stay out of election violence.
He called on all Sierra Leoneans to stay out of election violence and promote peace before, during and after elections.