Young people engage in peace process project

Mickey Cooper pictured at the prisoners exhibtion at the Gasyard. (3007SL20)
Mickey Cooper pictured at the prisoners exhibtion at the Gasyard. (3007SL20)

Young people from loyalist and republican areas of the city have enjoyed a crash course in the history and culture of both communities in recent weeks.

The experience will be beneficial to the young people when they make their own film about the peace process and the impact it has had on their own communities.

The groups in question are participating in the ‘Your Process or Mine’ EU funded project which is co-ordinated by the Gasyard Development Trust in the Bogside.

Project Officer Mickey Cooper described the project as one that encourages respect and understanding between both communities and said that the response from the young people involved has been brilliant.

“This project is aimed at exploring the chronology and major themes of the peace process from the perspective of both the loyalist and republican communities. It also aims to educate young people from both communities about their own history as well as the heritage of their counterparts.

“A few weeks ago we started the process of educating the participants by taking them on a guided tour of the wider city to make them aware of the key themes running through Derry’s history.

“This provides them with a good general understanding before they begin their specific tours of republican and loyalist areas of the city which will educate them more about the specifics of the peace process.

“Their participation in these tours, combined with their involvement in workshops with republican and loyalist ex–prisoners will help build capacity and allow the young people to design and film their own production about the peace process which they will begin work on later in the year. The film, combined with the large exhibitions which will also be produced through the project will be on show in all the young people’s local centres and will act as a major educational resource for locals and visitors alike.”

The groups involved include Lincoln Courts Youth Club, Newbuildings Youth Club, Pilots Row Youth Club and Youth First.