Author: Gulmina Bilal, Director of Individualland
Preventing Violent Extremism through Community Engagement
Individualland Pakistan (IL) is a research based advocacy group that has been working towards countering violent extremism (CVE), strengthening democratic procedures, and enhancing the role of citizens in governance since 2007. Through the aforementioned thematic areas, IL aims to strengthen social cohesion and community resilience; it therefore actively advocates for the cause of the Strong Cities Network (SCN).
In November 2017, IL facilitated Quetta’s membership of the SCN and convened a workshop introducing Quetta as a member of the network, alongside Peshawar and Nowshehra. IL is presently implementing an initiative, namely ‘Linking CSO-Youth-Local Government of Nowshehra for Peace’ in collaboration with the SCN.
Under the initiative, IL has engaged the youth, community-based organisations and local government officials in two Union Councils (UC) in Nowshehra, namely UC Dag Ismail Khan, and UC Shah Kot.
In the first phase, the stakeholders identified two key issues that need to be addressed, namely celebratory gunfire and drug abuse, and portrayed the impact of these issues through the videos below.
What is threat to peace of Nowshera!
Here are the some facts and figures, where a community is working to tackle the issues.
#Pakistan #AerialFiring #Nowshera #KPK
Posted by Individualland on Friday, November 9, 2018
Have you ever heard about Habib Nala, Quetta?
Its a source of 1 million business per day, where drug abusers have set a market inside a sewerage ford which includes a hotel, communication services and cabin of “aam estimal ke chezen”, where you will find both male and female drug abusers.
This is not a single story, there are hundreds and thousands of stories.
Watch video and see what researches are saying.
One a youth group in Nowshera is working on advocacy regarding drug.
Save others by spreading the word.
UNODC – United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Posted by Individualland on Saturday, November 10, 2018
The stakeholders engaged through capacity-building workshops and developed Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE) plans addressing the aforementioned issues at local level. The presenter of PVE plan on celebratory gunfire highlighted that ‘there is a need to build a cordial relationship between the police and community in order to ensure cooperative attitude when a complaint regarding aerial firing is registered.’
Presenting the PVE plan on the rising issue of drug abuse, it was highlighted that ‘besides conducting awareness campaigns in educational institutions and within the communities, the parent-teacher councils should be made more effective to address the drug abuse among school and college students.’
Currently, the PVE plans are being presented to Nowshehra’s Nazim, Ishfaq Ahmed Khan, to be considered for incorporation into Nowshehra’s district level PVE plan as a member of the SCN. Nazim Khan mentioned that ‘Celebratory gunfire is a serious issue and has been on the discussion table for a while now; I have discussed this issue with the DPO [District Police] Nowshehra and we are collaboratively designing how to end this act.’
He further added that ‘the local authorities are on alert to counter these issues; however, people must also understand the role they can play within their individual capacities to eradicate these issues. It is an individual and collective responsibility to act against these issues becoming a norm for society.’