UNU-GEST alumni Harriet Adong is working as Executive Director of FIRD in Uganda

Harriet Adong graduated from the UNU-GEST diploma programme in 2017 and is currently working as the Executive Director of the Foundation for Integrated Rural Development in Uganda (FIRD), a community based organization established in 2005 to support survivors of conflict related sexual and gender based violence. FIRD is committed to achieving gender equality, and promoting sustainable development and human rights in rural communities in Northern Uganda through projects such as regional workshops on adolescent sexual reproductive health, child protection against violence, community healing, and memory dialogue for survivors of conflict related gender based violence.

In her position as Executive Director, Adong’s efforts are aimed towards establishing a gender inclusive transitional justice process, which bridges the gap between reparation and advocacy, inspiring change on an institutional level in post conflict Northern Uganda. The strengthening of a gender inclusive transitional justice process will play a key role in advancing peace and social justice in Northern Uganda. Harriet believes that to achieve this goal it is important to embrace and include gendered experiences from men, women, girls, and boys into this process to ensure that FIRD’s reparation programs are inclusive in all interventions. In order to address the diversity of conflict impacts within post conflict communities, it is crucial to create safe spaces and platforms where community members, regardless of their gender, can share and express experiences.

All in all, Harriet Adong and FIRD are working towards a holistic gender inclusive transitional justice process, in which all impacted members of the communities are engaged, to build sustainable peace, achieve justice, and promote reconciliation in post conflict communities.

Furthermore, Harriet will be one of the speakers at Build Peace 2018 which is a conference hosted by the University of Ulster bringing together practitioners, activists, academics, policy makers, artists and technologists from around the world to discuss peace building and conflict transformation. This year’s conference focuses on re-imagining prosperity in conflict-affected societies and alternative economies for peace.