Weaving a Future of Peace: How the YLF Programme Empowered My Community Initiative

July 8th, 2024

By Nduku Louis Tebi (Cameroon), participant of the Youth Leader Fund for a World without Nuclear Weapons (YLF)

My name is Nduku Louis Tebi and I am the founder of Xhuma Africa, a youth-led organization in Cameroon dedicated to empowering young people to become agents of peace and environmental stewards. The growing threat of nuclear weapons has always troubled me, and the opportunity to participate in the Youth Leader Fund programme for a World Without Nuclear Weapons was a crucial step towards preparing me to make a difference in my community. The YLF program offered a wealth of knowledge and fostered a powerful sense of global connection, equipping me with the tools and inspiration to translate my passion for peacebuilding into tangible action within my community.

The YLF programme provided a multifaceted learning experience. The online courses on topics such as the Non-Proliferation Treaty, Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, or the history and consequences of nuclear weapons use offered valuable insights into the complexities of nuclear non-proliferation and global security. Engaging in discussions with experts from diverse backgrounds further broadened my perspective on peacebuilding strategies.

The most enriching aspect was the opportunity to connect with passionate young activists from around the world. Sharing experiences and ideas with these like-minded individuals fostered a powerful sense of global solidarity and a shared commitment to a world free from nuclear weapons. Our conversations highlighted the universality of the desire for peace, across cultural and geographical boundaries.  Through these connections, I discovered a network of passionate young leaders who are committed to working together to build a more peaceful future.

The YLF programme equipped me with valuable knowledge and skills to become a more effective advocate for peace. The programme fostered the development of my leadership skills through collaborative activities and presentations. I learned effective communication strategies that are instrumental in raising awareness about the dangers of nuclear weapons and mobilizing others to join the cause of peacebuilding. It has undoubtedly been a transformative experience, equipping me with the tools and inspiration to make a lasting impact within my community.

The knowledge acquired and inspiration gained has fueled my desire to translate these concepts into action within my community. This led to the creation of the “Training of Peace Weavers,” a flagship 6-month training program at Xhuma Africa Organization.

Peace Weavers

Through this initiative, we are equipping 50 young Cameroonians aged 17-25 with the skills and knowledge to become agents of peace and environmental conservators within their communities. The YLF programme’s focus on peacebuilding strategies and nuclear non-proliferation directly influenced the development of the “Training of Peace Weavers” curriculum. We incorporated interactive modules that explore the dangers of nuclear weapons and their impact on global security.  These modules draw on the insights I gained from the courses on the history and consequences of nuclear weapons use.

Training of Peace Weavers

The positive impact of the “Training of Peace Weavers” has been further recognized by my selection as one of 15 finalists for the prestigious Young Global Changers Award 2024 by the Global Solutions Initiative in Berlin, Germany. Attending this award ceremony presents a valuable opportunity to connect with other young leaders working on global challenges, share best practices, and forge partnerships for a more peaceful and sustainable future. This recognition serves as a tremendous motivator to expand the reach of the “Training of Peace Weavers” and empower even more young people to become advocates for peace and environmental stewardship.

Looking ahead, I envision creating a comprehensive online and offline library at Xhuma Africa training center for compassion with headquarters in Bamenda, Cameroon. This resource center will serve as a hub for young people across Africa to access knowledge and tools for fostering peaceful conflict resolution strategies. By grounding these approaches in African values, methodologies, and taking into consideration the realities of our time, we will empower future generations to become effective peace advocates.  This initiative has the potential of creating a ripple effect of peace throughout Africa and inspiring the world to embrace nonviolent solutions and a future free from the threat of nuclear weapons.

The YLF programme has been more than just an educational experience; it has been a transformative journey that ignited a fire within me to make a difference. With the tools and connections gained from this programme, I am confident in my ability to contribute to a more peaceful and sustainable future for all.

For more details about my work, kindly visit the Xhuma Africa website.

Disclaimer: The views presented in this article are of the writer’s alone. The text is not an official publication of the United Nations, and does not imply an endorsement of the views expressed nor that the material is accurate or without bias.