David is a peace activist fighting for change in South Sudan. He was raised amid conflict and taught how to cause violence, but he has become a soldier of peace and is striving to make a change for others like him.
As a child, David was forced to flee southern Sudan and make his way across the Sahara desert to Ethiopia. He became a child solider and spent over 17 years in refugee camps. In 2004, David was offered a humanitarian visa and resettled in Australia. He has since become a community leader in Melbourne and works tirelessly to restore peace in South Sudan.
His project, I Am a Peace Soldier, seeks to empower individuals as agents of change. It is a novel grassroots approach to peacebuilding in South Sudan that aims to transform attitudes towards violence by teaching the power of peace and shared destiny.
The return of conflict to South Sudan reinforces the need for peacebuilding at the grassroots level. This year, South Sudan is the country that fell the most on the Global Peace Index, meaning its score deteriorated the most. It ranks 160th out of 162 countries on the 2014 Global Peace Index, after Afghanistan and Syria.
The violent conflict in South Sudan is escalating with political and ethnic tensions rippling across the young country.
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