On 26 February Vasu Gounden, the Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, has been invited to address the annual gathering of the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) Regional Technical Advisors for peace building. Every year the CRS’ peace building regional technical advisors meet to share experiences, to analyse trends in the field of peace building, to explore new approaches and tools, and to improve their own internal communication and collaboration.
CRS typically invites one or two colleagues from other organisations who are either engaged in innovative work, or who have a unique vantage point in the field of peace building, to engage in a half-day discussion with them. Over the last year CRS has revised its peace building strategy to focus on three key areas: social cohesion, equity and church action. This will be the focus of this year’s meeting to plan the dissemination of their newly revised strategy for peace building and justice.
Attending the closed meeting will be twelve CRS technical advisors from all eight CRS regions and headquarters. The meeting will also include Father Sean O’Leary from the David Hurley Peace Institute and Jos de la Haye from Pax Christi International.
Vasu Gounden’s presentation will introduce the work of ACCORD as well as looking at any connections and similarities between ACCORD’s and CRS’s strategies. He will also participate in an informal panel discussion on the currents trends in the field of peace building.
In March 2006 ACCORD was similarly involved in the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency’s (Sida) biannual strategic Africa conference that brought together some 45 aid officials from Sweden’s and Sida’s missions in Africa. The focus of those meetings was on conflict resolution and post-conflict reconstruction in Africa.