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From November 3 to 5 2006, Irenees and Pipal Tree organized in Bangalore (India) a workshop on Mediation and Advocacy Strategies for Conflict Resolution and Problem Solving.
The purpose of this workshop was to concretely look at fresh non-violent options for the liberation of the poor and the oppressed.
It is clear to all of us that while we need to creatively campaign and confront to bring to focus urgent and critical issues related to poverty and human rights we also need to simultaneously explore ways and means to engage in ’hard dialogue’ in the interests of excluded sections of society. This workshop is to learn more about the ideas and methods related to this dialogue process which will defend and promote the interests of the affected parties and yet gain short and mid terms gains.
How do we mediate through the construction of coalitions of multiple stake-holders who may not see eye to eye on all issues of theory and practice? What are the skills needed for such a process? Is it possible to bring together a variety of stakeholders (Movements, NGOs, government, business, media etc) in the resolution of conflicts related to communal harmony, employment generation, water issues, child rights, adivasi issues, HIV AIDS etc?
This was a workshop on methodology as well as the issue-specific strategies and processes of concretely solving problems through mediation and advocacy.