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In Partnership with the EU and the Danish Red Cross: PRCS Organizes a Course on "Youth as Agents of Behavioral Change"

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Gaza - 16/2/2016 : PRCS held at its headquarters in Gaza City a course on “Youth as Agents of Behavioral Change (YABC)” during which young volunteers participating in the YABC Project in the Gaza Strip exchanged experiences and views. Held from 9 to 15 February in cooperation with the Danish Red Cross (DRC) and funded by both the EU and the DRC, the course promoted the culture of nonviolence and peace amongst young Palestinians.

It also provided them with relevant skills, built their capacities in the fields of conflict resolution and peace, got them better acquainted with activities under this project, and helped them draft action plans to be implemented in local communities. Nineteen volunteers from the five PRCS’ branches in the Gaza Strip took part in the course under the supervision of trainers from PRCS and IFRC.

The course was inaugurated by representatives from PRCS/Gaza Strip and DRC, the Coordinator for Youth Programs in the Gaza Strip and YABC peer educators.

In her opening speech, Yasmeen Rif’at, DRC representative, said: “This two-year project aims at building the capacities of Palestinian youth in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and the Diaspora, as well as at enhancing their skills in the fields of conflict resolution and nonviolence. I would like to thank all those in charge of this project, especially PRCS’ Youth Department, for working together as one team”. She also commended the EU for promoting projects targeting young people and focusing on the peaceful resolution of conflicts.

Participants received 60 hours of training over this 7-day training course. Topics covered included the culture of peace and nonviolence, the Fundamental Principles of the Red Cross and the Red Crescent, skills development, active listening, compassion, critical thinking, inner peace and non-violent communications, as well as building on the Fundamental Principles to inspire others and to change mentalities and attitudes in societies with a view to embracing non-discrimination, diversity and social integration.

Youth as Agents of Behavioral Change is the IFRC’s flagship initiative on the promotion of a culture of non-violence and peace. Created in 2008, this program seeks to empower individuals to take up an ethical leadership role in their community. It does so by triggering a process of self-transformation amongst participants that results in positive and lasting changes of mindsets, attitudes and behaviors, including behavior designed to generate change in others in harmony with the Fundamental Principles

In her speech, Reema Shobra, who works as an IFRC YABC trainer, said she was happy to visit the Gaza Strip for the first time. She thanked project officers for giving her this great opportunity and hoped to see all project activities implemented in the Gaza Strip in order to promote the Fundamental Principles. “I have witnessed great cooperation between PRCS’ volunteers during the course.

They exchanged views, experiences, ideas and emotions in an effective way. I fully believe in their skills and capacity to bring about real, effective and permanent change in their local communities. I firmly believe they will be a source of inspiration and hope and will set an example not only for the Gaza Strip or Palestine, but for the entire world”, she said.

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For further information, please visit the following website: http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/index_en.htm

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