Sep 16, 2020
ZOOM: Emily Gould, African Peace Partners
Work in Rwanda to promote peace and reconcilication

In November 2016, Emily Gould shared her work in Rwanda at a weekly Essex Rotary lunch.  In the spring of 2020, she was awared the District 7850 Donald McCrae Peace Award by outgoing District Governor Richard Fox.  She has agreed to up date us on her work in Rwanda, with reference to the 1990-1994 Civil War that turned into a genocide of Tutsi people.  You can read a history of the Rwanda Civil War on Wikipedia, here.

Statement from Emily Gould's webpage:

Although I have been fortunate to work in Europe, East and West Africa as well as Central Asia, the heart of my international work is in Rwanda.

As Co-director of African Peace Partners, I have been supporting community-based mediation and peacebuilding through a partnership with a local Rwandan NGO, Community Based Organization of Peace Education (CBOPE)-Ihumure. This project began at first with Mediators Beyond Borders and then became the mission of African Peace Partners, a U.S. non-profit. CBOPE-Ihumure now operates a peace center that offers an integrated approach to peacebuilding by weaving together programing in trauma recovery, conflict transformation and cooperative economic activity. While the center now operates for service delivery, we hope it will become the first in-country training resource for trauma informed mediation.

Also, through African Peace Partners, and with funding from the JAMS Foundation, I have been a consultant to the Rwandan Supreme Court on a law reform initiative to expand both mediation and restorative justice in Rwanda. In this context, drawing on my experience as a criminal prosecutor, mediator, and peacebuilder in Rwanda that I have had the opportunity to deepen my understanding of trauma recovery and the principles of trauma-informed practice and systems.