Dealing with the past: Engaging in the present

17 February 2017

The Civil Peace Service (CPS) program of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH co-funded a one-week conference on “Dealing with the past: Engaging in the present”. The conference was organized by the Heinrich Böll Foundation, Cambodia and supported by One Earth Future.

The concept for the event was conceived over the course of 2016 in order to engage international post-conflict professionals, providing a space for meaningful exchange on topics related to issues that transcend borders. The thematic design of the program facilitates organized engagement with relevant topics each day:  Space; Justice; Prevention; Healing; Memory. Activities were organized around these themes in order to provide structure to the programming for the program participants and for those engaged in public programming. Participants included professionals engaged in various post-conflict work in Cambodia and abroad. The group took part in the week-long curriculum including a visit to S21 Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, and the Killing Fields, during which they met with experts and spokespeople of the sites.

Participants had the opportunity to attend theatre plays on forced marriage under the Khmer Rouge and civil courage, view films on related topics, and engage in discussions, facilitating a space for networking and meaningful exchange. Public programming facilitated by the participants included panels, debates, and discussions at Meta House on the following topics:

  • The Role of Museums and Institutions in Genocide Education
  • Can there be appropriate justice after genocide?
  • Women, Peace and Security in the Context of Genocide Prevention
  • Healing the Trauma
  • Hate Speech and the Global Peace Index
  • Why did they participate?
  • Dealing with the Legacy of the Holocaust

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