Africa: The Festival of Amani strengthens our ability to live together


An article from Radio Okapi (translated by CPNN)

The 4th edition of the Amani Festival ended on Sunday (February 12th) in Goma (North Kivu). Over its three days, more than 30,000 people from all walks of life took part in this great cultural event for the promotion of peace in the Great Lakes region. Music, dance, exhibition of works of art, promotion of entrepreneurship … there was a diversity that pleased everyone.

The organizers of the festival are pleased with the success of this event, which they believe is contributing to peace building efforts in the region.

“Our goal is to reinforce our ability to live together. And in a post-conflict region, like the [Great Lakes] region, where many of the young people who attended the festival have lived through traumatic times, the festival fits in with its theme of being able to encourage living together” explained Vianney Bisimwa, the festival administrator.

The event provided an opportunity to strengthen the links between people and to help alleviate the trauma that the young people have lived through, he continued.

When people gather at this festival, they do not see themselves as ethnic groups, or other forms of identity differences, but “on the contrary, they look at each other in relation to what they have in common. It means the love of music and dance and the attachment to entrepreneurship. ”

One of the positive results of the festival, according to Vianney Bisimwa, are opportunities in the entrepreneurship sector:

“We have previously seen the success of the project CIGOM, a project funded by the Amani festival, which engages in the production of chalk. And we have many artists who, after the festival, have undertaken [some projects]. ”

[Note: For CPNN articles about the previous three editions of the Amani festival, see here for 2016, here for 2015 and here for 2014.]

(Click here for the original French version of this article)


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