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Youth For Peace Project

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Youth For Peace Project is a program sponsored by Us Embassy Nairobi (US) in Partnership with Eastleighwood  to Counter Extremist Violence and rapid youth radicalization in Kenyan Somali Populated Communities. It entailed Monthly Peace Forums, Monthly Newsletter publication and Weekly Youth Camping Radio Show Program. The YFP project was implemented   in Eastleigh Community for Sixteen (16) Months between 2013 and 2015, and reached at least 300 youths every Month with peace forums and peace message packages to reduce high reported cases of youth violence and explosions in the area. It is a source of currently implemented weekly youth dialogue

From Entrepreneur to Impresario

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While commerce in basic commodities is the lifeblood estate, entrepreneurship has expanded in many other directions thanks to foundation pictured here.Burhan to the left of this photo taken in Nairobi city centre- is representative of such entrepreneurship, having worked in a Forex bureau, established cyber cafĂ©, founded advertising agency for Eastleigh Business and inaugurated a magazine featuring stories of interesting to the Somali Diaspora. He is now working on a project entitled ‘ Eastleighwood’ a media production and  ‘youth empowerment initiative.

With Eastleighwood, Burhan has moved from entrepreneurship to impresario, promoting youth talents that exist among Somali and non Somali youth in Eastleigh. This talents is now showcased on Somali cable tv channels, uploaded on YouTube, and Facebook, and digested by Somalis throughout the world. Eastleigh is not just a place of business. It is where Somalis come from all parts of the world, and so a place Somali entertainment is desired. Music- Somali, Kenyan, and Ethiopian can be heard everywhere on the streets. It is played live at weddings heard in Eastleigh’s plusher hotels and ever at miraa chewing sessions. While Eastleigh is enriched by many other influences Somali culture naturally predominates, as other Somali aspects of life has grown upon the economic foundation of the estate.

Source: Global Sociology:https://www.macmillanihe.com/companion/Cohen-And-Kennedy-Global-Sociology/student-zone/Photo-essay-Nairobi/

Express Yourself: Changing Perceptions Through Art

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A South African singer, an Indonesian photographer and a Somali filmmaker use their talents to challenge the status quo.
03 Apr 2018 07:29 GMT Arts & CultureAsia PacificAfricaSouth AfricaIndonesia

They are Wicked
South African musician Fiesta Black is fed up with corruption. She releases a track with an unflattering message about the elites who have gotten rich at the expense of others: They are wicked. 
Fiesta Black hopes her music will inspire South Africans to fight back against corruption [Screengrab/Al Jazeera]
"Corruption is destroying everything. It's destroying the country as a whole. People have lost hope. They just don't feel there can be change." 
Follow her journey as she urges millions of South Africans to stop paying bribes and fight back. 
"I want to remind them that it's either we do something about it or just leave it to get worse than it already is. I think music is the best way to do it. It's a powerful tool."
Indonesia's Unlikely Shutterbug
Twenty-four-year-old Dzoel has no hands or legs, but he doesn't let that get in the way of his photography.
"It's ridiculous when people see me as disabled. I have my own way of doing things."

In a vehicle he designed himself, he cruises around Banyuwangi, photographing engagements and weddings and teaching photography classes.
"In the beginning, it started as a hobby. The slowly, people started using my service. Nobody had the slightest idea that I would go this far."
Hollywood, Bollywood and now ... Eastleighwood. Iman Burhan and a collective of young Somali filmmakers in Eastleigh, a neighbourhood in Nairobi, are tackling the question of how to correct negative perceptions about their culture head-on.
"In Western media, whenever they cover Somalia, they usually cover war. [For] Somalis, there was a positive story to tell. We felt that we needed to communicate to the world." 
Through the collective, Iman mentors young people to become role models in their community [Screengrab/Al Jazeera]
The group are taking on the roles of writers, directors and actors to make their first feature-length film using only one camera, hoping it will change perceptions of Somalis in a neighbourhood blighted by attacks blamed on al-Shabab.

Source: Al Jazeera


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Eastleighwood Youth Forum is a media based and youth led organization that is based in Nairobi’s Eastleigh estate. Eatleighwood Youth Forum was started 2011 after the Kenya defense forces went into Somalia and Eastleigh, its population and businesses were under propaganda attack that was formulated by the media.
This organization was started to tell our perspective of the story, the story of the Somali Kenyans and Eastleigh story and fight the propaganda that it is the Somalia population in the country that was behind the terror activities that were being witnessed for the first time. We also fearlessly countered the propaganda that Eastleigh’s booming business was benefiting from piracy money from Somalia.
Eastleighwood Youth Forum has always been in the forefront in fighting for the good name of Eastleigh and ensuring that there was security and peaceful coexistence between Somalis and non Somalis.
We did this by engaging the youth and training, entertaining and making them do meaningful things in life than engage in crime or fall for the terror call. We also do forums where we bring Somalis and non Somalis together so that we understand and accommodate each other as neighbors and fellow citizens.
The intolerance and inter tribal and inter religious clashes we use to witness in Eastleigh in the past are now things of the past. EYF’s efforts bared the fruits of flourishing businesses and peaceful coexistence we see today.
EYF is seeking to partner with the Eastleigh Business Community in selling Eastleigh as a business hub and peaceful estate so as to counter the negative image the mainstream media portrays about it. EYF will do media advocacy and will produce a monthly 2 to 5 minutes documentary series that sell Eastleigh like the Dubai of today.
We will also use our Eastleigh News magazine in showing what people can get where when they come for shopping in Eastleigh. We will give coverage to malls that are registered with you and show what they sell and how competitive they are in their businesses.
We will lastly give special coverage to Eastleigh Business Community’s events so as show that you stand for the people and business of Eastleigh and you are committed to serve their interest first. Through our 9,000 proactive youth network, we will show the world that Eastleigh is where they can get all they want and Eatleigh is the home of peace and beauty.

Mistaken Movie

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A group of international gangs and Terrorists. For their job to be effective and not to draw so many attention they hire jobless young men to do their job, the men marry ladies from Somalia and bring them to Kenya but when they reach Kenya, they disappear and never be seen again. Jamal (Lead Character) finally defies their order and fights for the poor lady he brought in the pretext of marriage with the help of another gang member will they succeed? Crew. Executive Producer – Burhan Iman Director – Abidweli Elmi Script – Abdiweli Elmi Videography – Rage Abdirahim Video Editing – Rage Abdirahim Cast Hassan A Salat – Jamal Anfac – Aisha Qali Ahmed (Qali ladan) – Deqa Amir – Amir Africa – Africa

Long Considered a Threat, Can Youth Take Lead in Peacebuilding?

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Members of a pro-peace youth group perform in Nairobi's Kibera slum following a recurrence of violent rhetoric within the community. Nairobi, Kenya, July 28, 2014. (Tony Karumba/AFP/Getty Images)

The challenge for policymakers will be to develop more youth and community-driven programs that effectively engage young people in the ways outlined in the UN resolution.

There are already a number of promising prototypes in this respect. Nairobi’s Eastleighwood Youth Forum (EYF), for example, has established “peace forums” and youth dialogues to provide alternative paths for marginalized Muslim and ethnic Somali community members considering joining al-Shabaab.

These monthly events gather more than 200 young people to discuss concerns within their community, and how to combat extremism through peaceful means. According to EYF’s own data, its programs have seen more than 50 young people move away from violence and extremism, as well as a drop in violence in the Eastleigh community. 

Margaret Williams is a Policy Analyst at the International Peace Institute.

Garissa school kids on holiday unaware of looming FGM cut

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Monday November 27, 2017

As schoolchildren start the Christmas holidays, many parents in Garissa are plotting ways to have them undergo FGM.

This is despite knowing well the law prohibits Female Genital Mutilation. However, the parents organise to have the girls undergo the cut in secrecy.

This has drawn attention from the area administration, NGOs fighting FGM, clerics, scholars and the Nyumba Kumi initiative. They have intensified campaigns in the last two weeks to end the vice.

A series of meetings targeting area chiefs and youth organised by Sisters Maternity Home, a vocal anti-FGM crusader in Garissa, arrived at a consensus to take the fight to the rural areas.

The campaigners educate the community on the health and legal implications of the practice.

Statistically, the Somali community has the highest rates of FGM in the world. About 95 per cent of girls between the ages of four and 11 undergo FGM, according to Unicef.

FGM is a rite of passage that involves removal of the external female genitalia. It was officially banned by the UN in 2012, but is still widely practised.

During the workshops conducted in Bula Mzuri sublocation, two circumcisers handed over their tools to assistant chief Hubba Abdullahi after learning of the legal consequences if found culpable.
Abdullahi said they have information that some Somalis, from as far as Britain and Nairobi, are taking their girls to either villages in Tana River or in the refugee camps in Dadaab to undergo the cut.

It has been difficult to do it near the towns. Abdullahi said the circumcisers are making a killing out of the exercise. They charge between Sh1,000 and Sh2,000 per girl for the cut. Some years back a woman would circumcise up to 50 during a season.

Zahara Hashi, a nurse at Simaho, said at least three cases of retained menstruation, formation of cyst and delayed delivery are reported at the facility every week. These conditions lead to fistula and may cause permanent disability.

Some of the women have since been divorced for sexually underperforming.

Sheikh Hussein Mahat, an Islamic scholar, said the practice commonly witnessed among the Somali community has nothing to do with religion.

He said Islam is against the cut and it is nowhere in the Holy Quran or even in the countries where the religion started. Mahat adds that it is purely a cultural practice that has been sneaked into the religion by a few selfish individuals.