On Wednesday, 20 February 2008, Anders Rönquist (First Secretary, Deputy Head, Development Cooperation Section), from the Embassy of Sweden in Pretoria, Linnéa Ehrnst (Advisor for the Division for Peace and Security from Sida Headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden), and Kerstin Lundgren (from the Swedish Embassy in Harare) visited ACCORD House.
L-R: Kerstin Lundgren, Vasu Gounden (Founder and Executive Director, ACCORD), Linnéa Ehrnst, Anders Rönquist, Pravina Makan-Lakha (General Manager: Operations and Business Development, ACCORD) and Tor Sellstrom (Senior Advisor, ACCORD)
During their visit our guests met with ACCORD programme staff who gave examples of the impact of ACCORD’s work on the Continent.
Sida is one of ACCORD’s larger donors, and contributes substantially to ACCORD’s activities on the continent of Africa. In 1996, as part of ACCORD’s International Youth Programme for Peace, Development and Reconciliation, a training was conducted in Durban, South Africa, that brought together youth from Burundi, Sweden and KwaZulu-Natal to train them in business and life skills. Over the years, ACCORD has worked with the Swedish Defence College on training courses related to ACCORD’s Peace and Security Unit, and in 2004 ACCORD worked with the South African Representative Office and the Palestine-based Sida, to present workshops on South Africa’s negotiation process. In March 2006 ACCORD was invited by Sida to host the first two days of their biannual, strategic Africa conference (as the focus of the conference was on conflict resolution and post conflict reconstruction in Africa).
In December 2006 Vasu Gounden, the Founder and Executive Director of ACCORD, was one of three African analysts/commentators invited by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to be a resource person at a roundtable discussion on the new Swedish Policy for Global Development, to give a perspective from the South. Mr. Gounden is also a resource person to the Folke Bernadotte Academy on their courses focusing on “Facilitation of Dialogue Processes and Mediation Efforts” that has included training for Staff of the United Nations Department of Political Affairs. In 2007 Mr. Gounden participated in a number of pre-meetings that were hosted by the Swedish Embassy in Pretoria in preparation for the bi-lateral Security Sector Reform (SSR) and Governance Meeting which was held in Sweden in October 2007. Mr. Gounden was also a resource person at this meeting.