Gounden to visit US

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, will be visiting the United States the week of 6 November, where he will spend time in New York and Washington.

Sunset on the Jordan Valley

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While on a recent trip to the Jordan Valley, ACCORD founder and executive director, Vasu Gounden, was moved to write this poem:

SUNSET ON THE JORDAN VALLEY

Centuries ago they came together
Walking across the desert plains
Across the flowing rivers
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Centuries ago they lived together
In peace and harmony
They sang and danced
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Centuries ago they prayed together
Built their places of worship
Alongside each other
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Centuries ago they ate together
In the homes of each other
Without boarders or fences
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Today each came alone
Walking across the desert plains
Across the dry rivers
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Today they live apart
In conflict and violence
They kill and maim
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Today they pray apart
And fight over places of worship
They claim as their own
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Today some eat and others starve
Separated by boarders or fences
Guns and checkpoints
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

I dream of tomorrow
To walk across the desert plains
And see the rivers flowing
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

I dream of tomorrow
To see them live together
Singing and dancing
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

I dream of tomorrow
To see them pray together
Respecting each other
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

I dream of tomorrow
To see them share their bread
Across fields without boarders
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley

Your race for tomorrow
Is a race against time
See the sun before it sets
Against the sunset of the Jordan Valley


Vasu Gounden
Amman, Jordan
18h45 on 31 October 2006 

ACCORD wins Tombouctou Award

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A top African award for contribution to peace and conflict management – particularly in the field of women’s rights and empowerment – was presented to the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) at a glittering ceremony in the Malian capital, Bamako, last night.

Gounden attends Sri Lankan peace seminar

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, was invited to be a resource person at a seminar entitled 'Envisioning New Trajectories for Peace in Sri Lanka', which was held in Zurich, Switzerland, from 8-9 April. The seminar was hosted by the Centre for Just Peace and Democracy (CJPD), Switzerland, in collaboration with the Berghof Foundation for Conflict Studies, Sri Lanka.

Iraqis in SA to look at justice and reconciliation

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From 8-9 March, ACCORD will host a high level delegation of visiting parliamentarians from Iraq who are on a study tour of South Africa. The tour is being arranged by the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq and the Institute of Justice and Reconciliation, which is based in Cape Town. The tour will take place from 6-11 March and will included meetings in Cape Town, Durban and Gauteng.

Progressive Governance Summit

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, has been invited to attend the inaugural dinner for the Progressive Governance Summit which will be hosted on the evening of the 10th of February in Pretoria, South Africa. The dinner is being hosted by South African President Mr Thabo Mbeki.

Gounden in Amman to speak at UN International Leadership Institute

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, will be in Amman, Jordan, from 26 October to 1 November, where he will be a resource person at a leadership course hosted by the United Nations University’s International Leadership Institute (UNU-ILI), based in Amman. The title of the course is “Non Violent Approaches to Conflict Resolution, Peace Building and Reconciliation”.

Black intelligencia at the Natives Club

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, was invited by the African Monitor to present a key note address on the topic “Development Challenges in Africa” at their launch conference on 2 May in Cape Town. While looking at the challenges that face the continent, Mr Gounden also looked at the role that various role players have to play in helping to address these challenges.

Gounden visits Sweden, Iceland & Norway

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, has been invited by the Folke Bernadotte Academy, based in Sando, Sweden, to be a resource person on their inaugural training course entitled ‘Facilitation of Dialogue Processes and Mediation Efforts’, which runs from the 19-25 March in Sando.

Gounden speaks in Sri Lanka

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, will be in Colombo, Sri Lanka, from the 20-26 February. Mr Gounden has been invited by The Foundation for Co-existence to be a presenter at their Symposium that will be held from 22-23 February, entitled: “Peace Negotiations in Sri Lanka”.

Gounden in Jordan and Oman

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The Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, Vasu Gounden, traveled to Jordan and Oman from 22-31 January. In Jordan Mr Gounden held meetings with ACCORD Trustee Professor Jairam Reddy, who is the Director of the United Nations University’s International Leadership Institute, and other individuals from the Institute to look at possible future synergies.