Publication Date

2009

Degree Name

MA in Conflict Management

First Advisor

John Ungerleider

Abstract

Between 1986 and 2006, when a ceasefire was declared between the LRA and the government of Uganda (GoU), 1.8 million people were displaced from their homes in northern Uganda. Some 12,000 people were violently killed. Tens of thousands more died of malnutrition and preventable diseases in over-crowed IDP camps. Between 20,000 and 66,000 children, youths, and young adults were abducted at various stages by the rebels to be used as porters, soldiers, and sex slaves. In the midst of this violence, brave community members stood up to work for peace. This paper is a case study that looks in depth at the experiences of one woman, Ayaa Evaline, and her movements to transform the twenty-five year war in northern Uganda in a productive manner towards peace, even as the violence was continuing. By protecting vulnerable children and securing sustainable reintegration for former child soldiers and other formerly abducted children, Ayaa Evaline worked to reclaim her community. In a manner exemplifying the persona of a conflict transformation practitioner, she harnessed the energy of a conflict that had resulted in spectacular violence and horror, and used that energy to move her community forward toward peace, acceptance, and a hopeful future. To help tell Ayaa Evaline’s story, the voices of young formerly abducted children (FAC) will be added in, to explain their own experiences during the war and to allow us to hear, in their own voices, what they needed to reintegrate into their communities, what was provided for them, and what they still feel is lacking.

Disciplines

Peace and Conflict Studies

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