Ministry of Peace and Reconciliation Under the Cross (Mi-PAREC):

Vision: To build a society where basic needs for life are satisfied

Motto: Against all forms of violence

The primary CAPP partner is Mi-PAREC (Ministry for Peace and Reconciliation) located in Gitega, central Burundi.  For more than 10 years, Mi-PAREC has been sponsoring the creation and training of a network of pro-active community peace committees in eighteen of the most volatile and vulnerable communities of Burundi. These committees, many now with sub-committees, involve tens of thousands of people in the central highlands and eastern provinces of Burundi. During the war, these peace committees built community cohesion across ethnic lines while helping to defuse military clashes and limiting human rights violations against civilians. In the dawn of the post-war era, the peace committees are building schools, organising cooperative reconstruction and development projects and providing models for informal transitional justice and reconciliation as refugees, internally displaced, ex-prisoners and ex-combatants return to their communities of origin. Peace committees in locations such as Nyanza Lac have been involved in settling more than 500 land disputes, while similar committees in areas such as Mutaho, have been responsible for the successful mediation of hundreds of violent conflicts.

Mi-PAREC also operates a dynamic community center in Gitega (Parec Centre), out of which run numerous community-support activities including a library, video nights, vocational training, a garage, agriculture and livestock husbandry, and numerous income-generating activities.  The Centre counts over 100 personnel, most of whom are recruited from amongst the large pool of local unemployed youth. Mi-PAREC supports a number of activities for widows and vulnerable women, including reconstruction of homes in collaboration with local Peace Committees.

Activities have included training for peace committees/women/youth, support for community mediation centers, support for community connector activities (i.e., agriculture, home construction, sports, dance), community festivals, weapons collection, youth work camps, vocational training for youth, tree planting,  peace education in schools, and library activities (films, documentation). Mi-Parec also has a series of income-generation activities including training consultancy, agriculture and animal husbandry, conference facilities, a garage, boutique, and equipment rental.

Mi-PAREC works chiefly in the north, central and eastern provinces of Gitega, Ngozi, Muyinga, Karuzi and Ruyigi, and the southern provinces of Makamba and Nyanza Lac. The organization has a staff of about 40 full-time personnel, the majority of whom are youth, with more than 100 volunteer and part-time personnel coming from rural locations around central Burundi. Mi-PAREC runs a number of successful income-generation projects, including a guesthouse and restaurant, and is partly self-sustaining.  It is also solicited in a consultant role to organizations such as Oxfam, CARE, and GTZ.  Mi-PAREC specializes in training on issues of community peace-building, restorative justice and reconciliation, and has recently introduced trauma healing activities.  Mi-PAREC is also widely recognized and respected by community leaders and district authorities, and has access and trust with both the Burundi military and demobilized forces, including strategic relationships which include the President of Burundi.

A.  Peace Committees

  • Establishment of 4 Mi-Parec Regional offices for follow-up (North, South, East, Central)
  • Training for PC’s (Peace Committees)
  • Follow-up of trainers in the field
  • 2 Community Mediation Centers (Mutaho, Gitega)
  • 30 Bicycles for 30 PC animators
  • Distribution of Goats, Seeds, Hoes, Chemical Fertilizer  (Mutaho, Giheta, Rutegama, SHombo, Butezi, Butaganzwa, Itaba, Nyanza-Lac, Kayogoro, Ruyigi, Mungwa, Ruhororo, Nyabihanga)
  • Providing Roofing / Doors / Windows for Rebuilt Homes  (130 homes in 2006)
  • Support for PC Rehabilitation of schools
  • Exchange days between PC’s
  • Community Festivals to Welcome Returnees
  • Weapons collection
  • Ongoing support from WFD program on the ground (12 Committees):    Butezi, Butaganzwa, Ruyigi, Gitega, Itaba, Mutaho, Nyabihanga, Kayogoro, Makamba, Nyanza-Lac, Shombo, Rutegama

B.  Women and Families

  • Training of trainers  – Family conflict management, non-violent communication, HIV/AIDS, family planning
  • Follow-up in the field (Makamba, Gatwaro, Kwibuka, Ceru, Marumane, Cene, Ruhororo, Kiryama, Mirama)
  • Support to widows’ groups (Kirambi, Kwibuka, Mungwa, Songa, Tankoma, Nyabihanga)
  • Support of shop for one widow’s group
  • Distribution of goats, hoes, seeds and chemical fertilizers (Songa, Kirambi, Kwibuka, Tankoma)

C.  Youth

  • Youth work camps (15 days, 9 camps with about 90 participants / camp) including road work, brick making, agricultural activities in aid of vulnerable members of the community
  • Meeting between youth from 5 Communes with youth refugees from Tanzania in Muyinga
  • Worship team concerts
  • Production of a music album
  • Sports and cultural days (Gitega, Giheta, Makebuko, Itaba, Rutegama, Shombo, Butezi, Nyanza Lac)
  • Professional training for 14 youth
  • Planting of 10000 trees (Bwoga)

D.  Peace Education in Schools

  • Development of peace curriculum ‘Amahoro Iwacu’ for primary schools
  • Distribution / training in use of curriculum in 10 primary schools (Kwibuka, Magarama, Ceru, Kibimba, Kabuguzo, Marumane, Mutaho, Nyangungu, Gitamo, Cagura)
  • Production of 2 comic books for peace education
  • Formation of Peace Clubs in Secondary Schools (CMA, ENAC Kibimba, COMIBU)
  • Training of Peace Club leaders
  • Training in active non-violence in Peace Clubs
  • Peace day in Kibimba Secondary School (ENAC)

E. Capacity-building

  • Great Lakes Peace Seminar  – 1 month training for trainers from Rwanda, DRC and Burundi
  • Training opportunities for Mi-Parec staff (COPA, MARP, Mindolo)
  • Video nights  / discussion groups for Mi-Parec staff

F.  Weapons Collection

  • Training of a local association of ex-combattants (ARSP)
  • Weapons collection in 4 locations (Itaba, Gitega, Gishubi, Gitega) including collection of 52 guns, 125 grenades, 1 rocket launcher
  • Presentation of weapons collected to local and national government officials

G.  Documentation (Library)

  • Maintenance of library

H.  Administration

  • Capacity-building evaluation with ICCO
  • CARE needs assessment
  • Development of internal by-laws and procedures manuals
  • Social welfare for Mi-Parec staff

*vocational training (construction, carpentry, masonry, sewing, ??   )

*trauma healing

*AIDS

Mi-Parec Income-Generating Activities:

  • Consulting contracts of Mi-Parec trainers with other NGO’s
  • Members Contribution  (15,000 Fbu / year, 18 members)
  • Centre Parec – accommodation, restaurant
  • Garage
  • Transport truck
  • 2 Shops (clothing, food stuff)
  • Agriculture (vegetable production, milk production (livestock husbandry))

Equipment rental (i.e, cameras, sound equipment, vehicles)

Eglise Evangelique des Amis au Burundi (EEAB):

CAPI sponsors one additional project in Burundi in partnership with the Friends (Quaker) Church of Burundi (Eglise Evangelique des Amis au Burundi) to address specific peace-building needs identified in the network of communities serviced by the EEAB.

EEAB also enjoys a long history of peace-building in Burundi with a variety of international partners.  It was the original founder of Mi-PAREC as well as establishing the Kibimba peace committee from which the Mi-PAREC peace committee model was derived.  The Kibimba peace committee was established as a forum for dialogue and reconciliation after a 1993 massacre involving more than 60 students from the EEAB-founded Kibimba Secondary School. The EEAB also runs more than a dozen primary and secondary schools in Burundi within which they have been offering extra-curricular peace education activities for more than 10 years. 

*HROC


*Christian Solidarity for Peace and Development