Many of the areas with high levels of violence are also poor, like this community in the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa. Photo: Sarah Newnham/Tearfund
Many of the areas with high levels of violence are also poor, like this community in the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa. Photo: Sarah Newnham/Tearfund


Editorial by Alice Keen

We all experience conflict in our lives. Whether it is within our families, with colleagues or neighbours, there are times when we disagree with others. Disputes can have many causes, including land, natural resources, water, political power or religion. Some have suggested that the 21st century will see more and more conflict as more people compete over scarce resources and share the same space. 

In this issue we focus on situations where conflict has become violent because people are trying to resolve conflict by using force. This always has a destructive effect. Many Footsteps readers live in places which have seen conflict become violent, some for a short time, others for decades. We know that this is a topic which is often ‘close to home’.

But Jesus calls us to be peacemakers in a world where there is conflict. This is no easy task. There are deep questions and challenges. In violent conflicts, what does it mean to seek peace? 

Contributors from the DRC, Honduras, Northern Ireland and Kenya begin to answer that question in their articles. They share ways to seek peace and resolve conflicts before they become violent. There are also practical tools to help you to analyse conflicts (ABC of conflict analysisConflict map) and to facilitate dialogue (Practical skills: facilitating dialogue).

The next issue will look at ways to gather local resources. If you have any topics you would like to see covered in future Footsteps or you would like to write a letter to share with other readers, please write to us at the usual address.

May peace be with you.

Please find below articles from Footsteps issue 92 in html.

To download a pdf version of Footsteps issue 92, please click here (PDF 2 MB). 

  • Conflict map

    This is also called a relationship map or actor map. It uses circles to show the main groups involved in the conflict, and lines to represent the relationships between them.

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  • Letters

    Footsteps in Swahili Thank you for your encouragement towards my aim to translate Footsteps magazine and other Tearfund publications into Swahili – our national language, so that many people can understand its contents. I have read carefully and understood the guidelines for translation and I promise to follow them when I start this work. Israel Saghware ELCT Mbulu Diocese PO Box 16 Mbulu Tanzania Editor’s note: Do you currently translate Footsteps into Swahili? Have you translated any of our back issues or other Tearfund publications? If so, please do contact Israel Saghware at the above address. If you have translated any of our publications into other languages, we always love to know! It means we can share your work with others and, if we have an electronic version, we can share it on the TILZ website. Traditional ways of predicting the weather Early warning of disasters or extreme weather can allow communities to take early action, saving lives and protecting livelihoods. Climate…

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  • Peaceful elections for all

    Elections to choose representatives and leaders are one way in which people can have their voices heard. A democratic system helps enable different views to be debated within a parliament, rather than opponents using force to bring about the outcome they want.

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  • Resources

    Working with Conflict: skills and strategies for action ISBN 1 85649 837 9 This source book is for people working in areas affected by conflict and violence. It will be useful for all those who are working in conflict-prone and unstable parts of the world in the fields of development, relief work, human rights, community relations, peace and reconciliation. Easy to use, well laid out, and including helpful visual materials, it provides a range of practical tools – processes, ideas, visual aids and techniques – for tackling conflict. These tools have been developed over a number of years by Responding to Conflict (RTC), in collaboration with practitioners from around the world. It includes examples from Cambodia, Afghanistan, South Africa, Kenya, Northern Ireland and Colombia. The book explains the options available to individuals and organisations, equips them to plan appropriate responses and strengthens their capacity to engage in useful interventions. Books can be bought by…

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  • Seeds of hope in the midst of violence

    With 20 murders committed every day, the United Nations ranks Honduras as the most violent country in the world. Hondurans themselves consider violence and insecurity to be the country’s main problems.

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