Simple Tools Offer Path Out of Conflict
Divisions between the people on either side of the Sudan-South Sudan border run deep. South Sudan’s declaration of independence in 2011 has yet to end the decades-long conflict between Misseriya Muslims and Dinka Christians.
The region is also chronically underdeveloped. “There’s not just no smartphones, there’s no electricity, no phone network and maybe one or two TVs in each village,” says Helena Puig Larrauri, cofounder of Build Up, which uses technology for peacebuilding.
This social enterprise was tasked by the US Agency for International Development with helping to improve relationships between Dinkas and Misseriya.
Its approach was simple. Build Up staff gave two mixed Misseriya-Dinka teams video equipment and helped them create films about the fragile peace in the South Sudanese market town of Majok Nyithiou. These films were shown last year at various settlements along the border.