A Foundation for Peacebuilding
Supporting communities and clearing mined areas around the Kabul Zoo, University of Kabul, the Aliabad Hospital, and the suburb of Koti Sangi. The work done in West Kabul by the Halo Foundation inspires trust and hope in the citizens living in areas blighted by conflict.
In a context where trust is a premium commodity, HALO offers a useful platform from which to enhance and develop processes that support everyday peacebuilding in the regions caught-up in conflict and beyond.
From the document: The Rebirth of West Kabul…
“In the west and south of Kabul, buildings along the rubble-strewn streets were mined, booby-trapped and turned into heavily defended positions along a frontline that separated the warring factions. Mines were laid across streets, in compounds, on the ground and upper floors of houses, and in basements. The areas around the University of Kabul, the Kabul Zoo, the Aliabad Hospital, and the suburb of Koti Sangi were all mined, fought over, abandoned and heavily damaged”.
HALO developed new procedures and imported and deployed armoured shovels, backhoes, bulldozers, a tracked crane and a towed stone crusher. Some have likened the operation to sifting the explosives from West Kabul through a giant mechanised sieve
By the end of 1999, HALO had cleared 400 acres of suburban minefields, over 15 square miles of battlefields, and destroyed over 4,700 mines and 123,000 items of unexploded ordnance”.
There appears to be an opportunity for peacebuilding stakeholders and Halo to develop their peacebuilding collaborations, to enhance and explore a series of important hybrid-peacebuilding approaches in and around vulnerable communities.
There is considerable local trust and affection for HALO, which is built through its practical and inclusive approach in clearing mines, teaching people to stay safe, managing ordinance, promoting gender equality, and supporting local employment initiatives etc.
Image: The Halo Foundation