The Pakistan US Alumni Network (PUAN) International Conference on Peace and Conflict Resolution was a three day event held from 27th-29th November bringing together more than 160 US State alumni from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
The conference was a positive step towards confidence building measures between the alumni from South Asia and an excellent opportunity to connect with fellow regional peacebuilders to share accounts of individual and organizational peace efforts.
I particularly enjoyed hearing about Haroon’s Burka Avengers and the success his project has drawn because little girls in Pakistan need heroes too. And creating a character that has the potential to create the alternative narrative of peace about Pakistan even though fictional at the time, does hold the potential to inspire the creation of real stories of peace and bravery in the future.
The child advocacy and later alternative dispute resolution workshops I attended were inclusive and allowed ample opportunities for participants to engage with the speakers. And the community activities on the third day with children from Pakistan Sweet Homes were a wonderful way for the alumni to connect with other alumni and also those much less privileged.
Overall, the conference was a great experience of networking, creating new collaborations and learning from each other with full credit for an event very well organized going to Erin Molnar Mains and the PUAN management team.
–Ammara Farooq Malik, IVLP Alumna