Building Bridges

Description 

A peace campaign and award to encourage and map peace initiatives across Kenya on an on-line platform with the aim to strengthen the peace-building capacity of Kenyan citizens. Building Bridges stimulated peace initiatives, which contributed to preventing or overcoming conflict within or between communities e.g. villages, neighbourhoods, faith groups, families, and businesses. Conflicts were related to land issues, ethnicity, and corruption amongst others.

Building Bridges invited individuals to take action and register their peace initiative, activities or organization on the Building Bridges website. Registrations were collected through SMS, e-mail, mail and web form. All peace initiatives are online on www.buildingbridges.co.ke, were they are displayed on the map of Kenya using a customised version of the Ushahidi crowd-sourcing information system. The website contains information and features to encourage networking between individuals and organisations involved in peace building. The campaign was promoted through TV, radio, print (newspaper, flyers and posters) and online channels (blogs, face book and twitter). There were prizes in 3 categories; Individuals, Community Based Organisation and Civil Society Organisation.

Building Bridges is an initiative of Butterfly Works (BFW) and Media Focus on Africa Foundation (MFA), supported by Mamabits, PeaceNet Kenya and Ushahidi. Building Bridges is a follow up to our previous joint campaign named Unsung Peace Heroes aimed at identifying and recognizing those who played a positive role during and immediately after the post elections chaos in Kenya. The campaign builds on the following peace building initiatives in Kenya; MFA's Fist to Five for Change,The Team and BFW's GETH2O and Sambaza Peace.

Project activities 

Building Bridges website

For Building Bridges we developed an online plarfrom with a mapping tool based on the Ushahidi platform, where people could register their projects and initiatives, and keept the public informed on any progress they were making. Additionally the platform provided information on peace building organsiaitons country wide.

Results 

50 peace initiatives on-going after 1 year

  • 800 projects registered on the website
  • 76 organisations signed up for yellow pages
  • 15 community stations aired radio spots
  • Price giving event in the I-hub rewarding 3 winners
  • Baseline and impact study
  • 16.320 sms received through the system
  • 20.000 people from all regions got involved in set up peace initiatives of people in their communities
  • You 10 Community Radio Stations started and maintained relevant phone-in programs
  • 1000 people frequently participate in the on air debates
  • 50 of the initiatives are still on-going after one year
  • 40 communities claim to have improved peaceful togetherness due to this project
  • A toolkit ‘How to start your own Social Change Campaign’. Toolkit NO 1.
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