The history of South Sudan is marked by decades of conflict and subsequent post-conflict recovery. It’s impact on every sphere of people’s lives continues to be seen through dehumanization, deep distrust, divisions, and persisting diverging collective memories. Many victim-survivors still hold grievances by the past civil war, of sadness and loss (personal, physical and economic) and the lack of recognition of their identities as victims. A lack of communication among the community members continues to foster anger, hatred, and misunderstanding. Past human rights abuses remain unaddressed, social capital is lacking, trauma persists, and economic recovery is still very limited.
The Revitalized Transitional Government of National Unity (R-TGONU) has taken steps towards rebuilding South Sudan in line with the R-ARCSS including through the establishment of transitional justice mechanisms. The mechanisms aim to advance truth telling, reconciliation, healing, reparations and criminal accountability if the country is to recover and re-emerge on the path to unity and sustainable peace. Priority has been placed on setting up the Commission on Truth, Reconciliation, and Healing (CTRH) and the Compensation and Reparations Authority. To date the R-TGONU through the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs has completed public consultations on the law that will establish the CTRH, conducted two learning visits to identify comparative experiences and drafted a framework for the CTRH and CRA Bills. The Bills are expected to be completed in 2023.
By its very nature, the CTRH will enable the country to acknowledge its history of past violence; help the truth to be known publicly; enable justice to be done; and support victims and the society to move beyond the painful past into a united and peaceful future. In turn, it will signal the way forward to ensure grave violations of human rights never happen again. The public and victims of past abuses can only benefit from these transitional justice processes if they are made aware of them, provided with legal, medical, psychosocial, and other support, and prepared to seek available remedies willingly. Securing public support for these processes will also be crucial in the success.
As part of its support to transitional justice, UNDP intends to support the establishment of victims support groups as well as to promote truth, reconciliation and healing dialogues amongst the victims of the past huma rights abuses in the most conflict affected communities, such as, survivors of conflict related sexual violence, , children born out of rape, conflict related disability, internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and ex combatants. Through these tailored dialogues, victims of past human rights abuses will be sensitized, prepared and able to engage willingly with the Commission for Truth Reconciliation and Healing (CTRH) and the Compensation and Reparations Authority once they are established. Complementary radio programmes targeting the general public in communities will further increase awareness, , mobilize communities to support and where relevant participate in the CTRH hearings and create demand for the establishment of other mechanisms on reparations and criminal accountability. Throughout, these activities will address attitudes and behaviours of the different target groups through the provision of advice, as well as psychosocial support to vulnerable groups.
This call for proposal invites competent and reputable registered Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) working across the States in South Sudan to submit proposals for an eight (8)months grant aimed at breaking any barriers preventing communities and victims of past abuses from seeking remedies from the CTRH process through the establishment of Victims Support Groups (VSG), contributing to awareness-raising on transitional justice and specifically the CTRH, and creating spaces among victims to dialogue and become aware about of and ready for truth telling, reconciliation and healing.
The main objective of the grant is to identify competent and reputable registered Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), non-governmental organizations, or community-based organizations to strengthen the capacity of media organizations on transitional justice processes in Greater Equatoria, Greater Bahr el Ghazel & Greater Upper Nile – to:
- Establish and operationalise Victim Support Groups (VSG) that can help and provide free confidential support to survivors of conflict related sexual violence, , children born out of rape, conflict related disability, internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and ex combatants. This includes offering advice, and creating awareness on the truth, reconciliation and healing process, and psychosocial support to the affected vulnerable groups.
- Carry out awareness creation and sensitization programmes for communities that are most affected by the conflict and human rights abuses on the value of truth, reconciliation, healing, compensation and reparations. This will enhance their understanding of the transitional justice mechanisms and act as a platform where both the public and victims can support the Commission for Truth Reconciliation and Healing (CTRH) and demand for other mechanisms on reparations and criminal accountability.
- Organise various and tailored dialogues for only survivors of conflict related sexual violence, children born out of rape, conflict related disability, internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and ex combatants on truth-telling, participating in reconciliation and healing and seeking compensation and reparations. The dialogues should be held in a manner that ensures and guarantees the safety of victims and survivors post the meetings. . enlist the voices of all victims.
- EXPECTED OUTPUTS/DELIVERABLES
The organizations are encouraged to develop their own expected results based on their respective assessment of needs, issues, and challenges of vulnerable groups during the period of implementation. Expected results will include the following:
- At least 5 Victim Support Groups (VSG) are established and operationalized in each of the states in each region and used to create space and empower (sensitize and prepare) over 120 survivors of conflict related sexual violence, children born out of rape, conflict related disability, internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and ex combatants per state in the respective region to participate fully in the CTRH, and provide them free confidential and healing support to recovery
- 250 survivors of conflict related sexual violence, children born out of rape, conflict related disability, internally displaced people, returnees and ex combatants in each of the states in each region benefit from victim centric tailored dialogues to inform them of the CTRH, CRA and truth-telling, reconciliation, healing, compensation and reparations, address questions and advocate for their participation in the related processes.
- 1,000,000 people per region are reached through radio and other innovative media avenues to create awareness on the CTRH, CRA and truth-telling, reconciliation, healing, compensation and reparations in general