MOP Graduates 65 Adolescents, Youth as Peace Ambassadors

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Messenegers of Peace-Liberia Inc. Graduates post for group photo before the kickoff of the program at the Information Ministry in Monrovia

With the quest to maintain Liberia’s peace, Messengers of Peace-Liberia Incorporated (MOP), has graduated 65 adolescents and youth to assist in propagating peace messages to ensure that the country’s peace is maintained before, during, after the 2017 elections.

At the graduation exercise yesterday, held at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism in Monrovia, the graduates put on an impressive performance, including public speaking and drama towards sustaining Liberia’s peace, and selection.

“We learnt how to implement the UNSCR # 2250, resolve conflict, mediate and how to conduct ourselves before, during and after the elections,” said  Ms. Gwendolyn Myers, founder and executive director of Messengers of Peace-Liberia Incorporated (MOP). “We all had fun during the peace camp; we played, danced our traditional style of dancing, salsa, acquired new language skills-French, Spanish and local dialect Kpelle.”

Ms. Myers said this year’s peace summer camp has focused on the upcoming Presidential and general elections; as some of the young campers would be voting for the first time and needed to raise their self-esteem, literacy level, Life and Language skills of youth ages 8-29 years.

According to her, over seventy youth were drawn from several schools and communities where MOP operates its weekly coaching and mentoring programmes and bi-weekly Wheel project. They praised the volunteers from the UN Agencies and CBOs; camp managers, guest speakers and lecturers who took off their busy schedules to impart knowledge on them at this year’ camp.

Director Myers said the camp activities were intense as young people from the broad spectrum of the society interacted at different levels of non-formal learning. “We had the unique opportunity of conducting field excursions trips to UNMIL, ECOWAS and participated in Community outreach and engagement services during the International Youth Day, National Flag Day and weekends. Our campers were exposed to electoral processes and even conducted their own camp elections,” she said.

“Parents and guardians here present, you must have noticed obvious or refined changes among your children for the better. Personal changes that begin with the seeds of peace planted at our camps are long lasting and we trust you will help enhance what we started with your wards,” she said.

According to director Myers, during the peace camp, they encountered several challenges. “Besides the funding and other logistical challenges we faced, there were campers that had challenges with interpersonal relationship, while others had issues communicating in public. There were other issues with reading and writing. Some of these issues we addressed and some we need to explore further with government and non-government partners.”

She lauded ECOWAS/EU for their financial, technical support and encouragement and for inclusive participation; the “Emergency Support to Preventive Diplomacy and Related Actions to ensure a free, fair and peaceful Elections in Liberia”; UNMIL DSRSG Rule of Law Mr. Waldemar Vrey for allowing Liberian youths into UNMIL HQ and for the VCT engagement with young people; the UNVs Liberia, MOP colleague Paige from MIT in Boston for the special training on the introduction of research for young people; the Daily Observer for their trust, publicity and support; the Lebanese Community in Liberia for the bags of rice, oil and drinks; Liberia Coca-Cola Bottling Company for their support; the President, as well trusted men and women of the Rotary Club, Monrovia for your unflinching support.

Natt Walker, a representative from the Economic Community of West African States, said the Community is pleased to support the MOP’s focus on sustaining Liberia’s peace through the engagement of young people.

He recounted ECOWAS’ position to maintain peace and will continue to ensure that Liberia’s elections are free, fair and transparent, adding that, “We are impressed with the level of participation by the young graduates and hope that they can carry such in their various communities.”

He called on MOP to continue to engage these young graduates, which will help them in many ways, stating that “We will be ready to support you.”

The parents who spoke lauded director Myers for the level of support and education provided for young people, especially in the area of maintaining Liberia’s peace.

“We want you to demonstrate what you were taught within your various communities. You are messengers and hope that you will remain peaceful while ensuring that Liberia is peaceful as well,” one of the parents told graduates.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. To God be the glory!

    This is an unforgettable experience. The people met, the lessons learnt, the fun had….all made this experience wonderful.

    The government needs to support this project. There needs to be a lot done in this country. There are many young people who need to experience this life of peace and belonging. Ms. Gwendolyn Myers cannot do it alone. She needs more support. She needs to be applauded for the work she’s doing.

    Team MOP, thanks for this experince which will forever be cherished in our heart.
    #Vote_Peace
    #Team_MOP

  2. My name is Soon B. Noring, a Participant of the Messengers Of Peace Inc -Liberia 2017 Peace Summer Camp.

    The Messengers Of Peace Inc -Liberia 2017 Peace Summer Camp was my greatest opportunity I had ever experienced. It brought a positive changes into my life. It makes me to know things that were beyond my understanding. I am returning to my with proud and dignity, with new dimension of life to help transform the lives of my peers, especially those who are in the ghettos.

    It was a privilege to learn the United Nations security council resolution 2250. which talks about youth inclusive representations in decision making, protection and prevention of Youth from violence activities and Youth empowerment. And also the Sustainable Development Goals SDGs.

    Public speaking was a great challenge to me. On the peace summer camp, we were taught about Tips and Tricks on public speaking. I was always given the opportunity to speak in sessions. Now, My public speaking skills had improved. I can now speak in public without shyness. It was exciting to meet with my peers from different diversities. I really enjoyed the peace awareness we carried on in the slums communities. I love going into the communities to interact with community dwellers and I am proposing to MOP to continue the peace awareness initiative as we gear to towards our elections to encourage people desists from violence activities. I will be available any time MOP called upon me to perform this task.

    Thanks to the entire Messengers Of Peace team for their inspirations to us on the Peace Summer Camp. Throughout, Messengers Of Peace worked so hard to provide us a happy life on camp. Miss Myers have been there giving us useful advice and she did all these things without racial or discrimination which of course is one of the attributes of a good leader.

    Actually, words are in adequate to express. Miss Gwendolyn has been a inspiration to us on the Peace Summer Camp and a mentor that we will always look up to. She is a Tower of strength and knowledge. If the world can have more people like her, Indeed the world would be a better place to make a living. No one can be great leader unless they takes their genuine joy in the success of those under them. Leaders like Miss Myers are not many in our generation.
    The knowledge the Peace Summer Camp have imparted in me is a treasure that will remain in my head forever and I promised to pass it on to the community and my generation. And I will follow miss Myers path to greatness.

  3. A life changing experience is what I called the camp. With the help of this year’s peace summer camp, many of us have taken the bold steps in discussing issues relevant to the development of young people(Public Speaking).
    With this year’s theme been “Vote Peace” we are now ready to discuss with our peers and even adults about maintaining and sustaining Peace in mama Liberia..

    All thanks to God through Messenger of Peace for this opportunity..

    #Team_Mop
    #VotePeace
    #Youth4Peace

  4. This year Peace summer camp was amazing. This is the camp that has changed my entire life style completely,, especially how I behave now a days with the people around me. I now see my self talking about Peace . Am so grateful for that in my life. Because to see a young lady like me talking about Peace, it’s a whole lot to me. And I must commend the MOP family for everything.

    All my life I have been wanting to learn Spanish. At the camp, I was opportune to learn Spanish. And i must admit that the Spanish class really cool. We (the campers ) really enjoyed the class.(But I guess I enjoyed it more than anyone, because that was one of my dreams in life. (Learning Spanish ) And MOP has helped me to accomplish my dream. )

    One of the things that inspired me at the camp was when we were taught Introduction to Research. During the introduction to research class, we were though how to do research and why research is important in our world today. We also learn that in doing research, we should expect conflict too. Because some people won’t be willing to answer any of your question and may talk to you harshly or do negative things. But we were told that if we’re in this kind of situation, we should remain quite and peaceful. And peace should be always be in our hearts or minds when doing research to avoid problem.

    Another thing that inspired me during the one month of Peace summer camp was, the French class. We were taught how to introduce our selves in french. We were also thought how to sing in French. We even learn a Peace song in french. And that was really amazing.

    Am honestly happy that I was one of the participants of the Messengers Of Peace summer camp 2017. This camp I attended has brought much Joy to my heart. And because of this, I will always be grateful all the days of my life for everything MOP family has done for me .

    May God continue to bless Messengers Of Peace
    May God also bless our loving mother and friend Ms. Gwendolyn Myers.
    #votepeace
    #MOP
    #welovemop
    #voteonlypeace
    #peaceforyouth

  5. My name is Soon B. Noring, a Participant of the Messengers Of Peace Inc -Liberia 2017 Peace Summer Camp. The Messengers Of Peace Inc -Liberia 2017 Peace Summer Camp was my greatest opportunity I had ever experienced. It brought positive changes into my life. It makes me to know things that were beyond my understanding. I am returning to my community with proud and dignity, with new dimension of life to help transform the lives of my peers, especially those who are in the ghettos. It was a privilege to learn the United Nations security council resolution 2250. which talks about youth inclusive representations in decision making, protection and prevention of Youth from violence activities and Youth empowerment. And also the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Public speaking was a great challenge to me. On the peace summer camp, we were taught about Tips and Tricks on public speaking. I was always given the opportunity to speak in sessions. Now, My public speaking skill has improved. I can now speak in public without shyness. It was exciting to meet with my peers from different diversities. I really enjoyed the peace awareness we carried on in the slum communities. I love going into the communities to interact with community dwellers and I am proposing to MOP to continue the peace awareness initiative as we gear to towards our elections to encourage people desist from violence activities. I will be available anytime to MOP to perform this task. Thanks to the entire Messengers Of Peace-Liberia Inc team for their inspirations to us on the Peace Summer Camp. Throughout, Messengers Of Peace worked so hard to provide us a happy life on camp. Miss Myers has been there giving us useful advice and she did all these things without racial or discrimination which of course is one of the attributes of a good leader. Actually, words are in adequate to express. Miss Gwendolyn has been an inspiration to us on the Peace Summer Camp and a mentor that we will always look up to. She is a Tower of strength and knowledge. If the world can have more people like her, Indeed the world would be a better place to make a living. No one can be great leader unless they take their genuine joy in the success of those under them. Leaders like Miss Myers are not many in our generation. The knowledge the Peace Summer Camp has imparted in me is a treasure that will remain in my head forever and I promise to pass it on to the community and my generation. And I will follow miss Myers path to greatness.

  6. Like the saying goes every good thing has an end.Our wonderful and life changing Peace Summer Camp has come to an end and it’s so sadden to me that it has to end but again i am very happy that i was a participant… The Peace Summer Camp 2017 exposed me to a lot of good things that has change my life positively..
    1)INTRODUCTION TO THE VOTING PROCESS: For me as a first time voter, this has helped me to understand how to cast a valid vote and i think this is very important in order for us to have a violence free elections. In Liberia when the elections results is announce and the number of invalid votes is high, people start to say that there has been a cheating. So in order to avoid this, there should be enough education on the voting process and i am so happy that i was educated at the summer camp…
    2)PUBLIC SPEAKING: Public speaking is something that scare the hell out of me because growing up as a child i wasn’t exposed and for where i grew up, the rural part of Grand Bassa Liberia, our school was all about academics and didn’t have time for extra curriculum activities but at the camp i was involved in debates which was part of our public speaking sessions, have your say where we will stand in front an audience including Ms. Gwendolyn Myers and present on topics concerning Peace Building. i must say it was very helpful and now though i am not an expert yet but with the tips and tricks i received From Ms. Myers, with more practice i am going to be very good at Public Speaking.
    3) The UNSCR 2250 and the SDGs: The UNSCR 2250 is a very important document that i think every youth should know about but probably if i wasn’t a participant at the summer camp, i wouldn’t have known about this document. Now i know as a youth it’s my right to Participation, Protection, Prevention, Partnerships and Disengagement & reintegration. For the Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs) to be achieved come 2030, everyone should be aware that in order for the goals to be met come 2030 or before 2030 its every individual responsibility and i am happy i was told that at the summer camp and now in my own weak ways i am working towards achieving the goals. I am now consuming responsibly..
    I learned so many things but i would like to stop here and firstly give thanks to God almighty and to the Executive Director of Messengers of Peace Liberia Inc, Ms Gwendolyn Myers for the opportunity, it was life changing and i am most grateful. May God continue to bless her and may she receive more partners including the government so that the numbers of campers can increase and if not all but majority of the youth in Liberia will experience this great opportunity…..

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