Canadian-born Tiffany Easthom is today named as “Civilian Peacekeeper of the Year” by the NGO, Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP).
Tiffany Easthom, who is currently serving as NP’s Country Director for South Sudan, has also run field projects for NP in Sri Lanka and for Peace Brigades International (PBI) in Indonesia. In announcing the award, co-chair of NP’s International Governing Council Simonetta Costanzo Pittaluga had this to say:
By Lea Krivchenia
I sit on a sack of something – probably sorghum – in a trailor attached to a tractor, bracing myself against the bumps, a constant exercise on any road in South Sudan. The moon is bright above us, providing the only light in between the cattle camps, where you can see cooking fires and the occasional flashlight. On the horizon you can see the dull glow of the few towns in the area with generators and therefore electric light – the land is so flat that you can see the light from these towns 20 kilometers away.
Nonviolent Peaceforce is expanding rapidly in South Sudan, in response to the growing protection needs and insecurity in the world’s newest country. By the end of this month, NP will have 8 field teams deployed across 5 different states of South Sudan, using the unique methodology of unarmed civilian peacekeeping to reduce violence and increase the safety and security of civilians affected by violent conflict.
“I got the tools from the Nonviolent Peaceforce training to manage my three wives. I applied the concepts; now my family lives in [a] peaceful manner.”
NP has been working in Bor, the capital of Jonglei state, since June 2012. Throughout December 2013 and January 2014, violence consumed vast swathes of South Sudan, and Bor changed hands four times; the town was devastated. Residences and market stalls were razed, the hospital and university facilities were ravaged, and numerous humanitarian compounds were looted. Nearly all of the civilians fled if they were able.
We are proud to announce, that Mukesh Kapila, Nonviolent Peaceforce Board Member and Senior Advisor in South Sudan will be in the Twin Cities on November 20th. During his presentations Mukesh will be speaking about his work with Nonviolent Peaceforce and his book “Against a Tide of Evil.” Please join us at any of the following events:
Nonviolent Peaceforce Office, 425 Oak Grove St, Minneapolis
7:30 am Breakfast with Mukesh
John Boul has been with Nonviolent Peaceforce in South Sudan (NP) since the country program began operating in 2010. He joined NP as a national protection officer on South Sudan’s first field team, based in his home area of Mundri in Western Equatoria state. The time John spent as a member of that team laid the foundation for his future role as a team leader for NP. This is John’s journey from being a national protection officer to becoming Nonviolent Peaceforce’s first South Sudanese team leader.
Former Humanity United intern, Sheldon Wardwell, has been a Protection Officer with Nonviolent Peaceforce in South Sudan since December 2013. We asked him to share his perspectives with us. He wrote the following on his phone, under a tree in the UN base in Bentiu, South Sudan.
When Selkirk College Instructor Randy Janzen traveled to South Sudan in June, it wasn’t to report on the looming humanitarian crisis caused by famine and civil war in that country.
It was late Sunday night when I received a call from the County Commissioner of Uror. He was asking if we could respond to a rape case, the survivor had arrived in his compound that same day. My reply was, “We will, but not at this time, we will come tomorrow morning.” We are based in a deep-field location that is subject to frequent insecurity and traveling out at night would put the whole team at risk. So we would have to wait for the daylight.