ACHIEVEMENTS AND WORK IN PROGRESS
PALAVER ( meaning CONFLICT in our – Sierra Leone local dialect) is inevitable in our lives. Conflict happened everywhere in the world, including family dispute, community dispute, workplace etc.
Before this time, there has been an inbuilt tension of “palaver” (conflict / dispute) between family and community members, family separation as a result of not having a viable traditional and cultural option for mediation of minor cases (matters), youth’s violence and high rate of trauma in the community. The only source of redress the people knew was through the traditional criminal justice system (by involving – calling police) intervention. Traditionally, newcomers have more trust in restorative resolution models, wherein victims, offenders, law enforcement and the community collectively come together to resolve dispute. The involvement and recognition of victims in chatting the way forward to resolve dispute is empowering as a healing and premised our transformative approach to conflict and its resolution. Transformative mediation is centered and fundamental to newcomer’s community alternative dispute resolution process.
Since 2017, our newcomers’ traditional mediation services to our community members have proven to be a viable option in peacemaking and dispute resolution through mediation between people in dispute. As a result of our intervention, there is community cohesion and ethno cultural understanding between community members, reduction of family conflict and community conflict, even though conflict is inevitable.