The Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) recently launched a new online digital archive which documents the EU’s investment in supporting the on-going peace process, since the early ceasefires of 1994/1995.
The platform was the culmination of a very extensive archiving process which included the manual scanning and digitisation of approximately 100,000 pages of information and thousands of different folders containing evaluation reports, project case studies, research documents, films, photographs and newspaper articles.
Called the PEACE Programmes Learning Platform it contains details of over 22,500 peace and reconciliation projects, operating across Northern Ireland and the border counties of Ireland.
The result is a content rich and easily searchable online archive which traces the history of the PEACE Programme, under its different incarnations from 1995, right up until the present day.
Unique across Europe, the PEACE Programme is designed to reinforce progress towards a more peaceful and socially cohesive society. To date, it has provided over €2.2 billion in funding to projects which increase tolerance and respect; reduce the levels of sectarianism and racism which exists in society; as well as help to address the legacy of the past.
Examples of this type of support include the creation of the iconic Peace Bridge (which has changed the urban landscape of Derry/Londonderry); funding to help promote the role of women in peacebuilding; along with many other projects designed to develop vulnerable young people and help them to reach their full potential.
The platform details the lessons learnt and the different methodologies used to create these projects and is designed to support academics, researchers and those currently involved in peacebuilding at a local, regional and international level.
Discussing the importance of the Platform Gina McIntyre, Chief Executive of the SEUPB says: “The PEACE Programmes Learning Platform carries an invaluable wealth of information on projects that have contributed to peacebuilding over the years. Set out in an easy-to-access, online format, it gives a voice to the many people and organisations who have both delivered and benefited from EU PEACE funding over the past three decades.
“It will be a ‘living archive’ and regularly updated with new information on current PEACE IV projects, as well as new projects and initiatives to be funded under the upcoming PEACEPLUS Programme. The Platform will help to protect and preserve the legacy of the PEACE Programme. It can also be used to share our experiences which will help to inform the work of future peacebuilders here on this island and also in other countries across the world, which are emerging out of conflict.”
The Platform can be accessed here https://www.peaceplatform.seupb.eu/en/