Together for the Best: Uniting Angolan Youth for Political Dialogue” is a 24-month project, funded by USAID aimed at promoting political dialogue among Angolan youth and seeks to explore current trends in Angola in order to leverage the potential of youth, both male and female, to contribute to the resolution of political conflicts and support the quest for collaborative solutions to the challenges faced by the country.
This study shows that Youth are organized in formal and informal groups. Formal organizations (political parties, non-governmental and governmental organizations, churches, humanitarian and community associations, student organizations, as well as sociocultural and sports organizations) and informal organizations/groups occasionally organize in some neighborhoods to implement sport and culture-related activities with the scarce resources they have. Formal organizations tend to play a more important role in the community, as they are better organized (with articulated missions, objectives and goals, they implement their activity under an agenda and they are well structured) than informal ones, who may play a positive or negative role in influencing youth (as they are not structured and they do not implement their activities under an agenda, with no missions).
There yet remains great potential for developing relationships and collaboration among youth across political parties. With pressure for youth participants to follow their party ideology, many youth see their peers from other parties as rivals. The main dividing line across youth from different political parties is related to Angola’s Liberation Movement history and political formation. The parties MPLA, UNITA, and FNLA have had different influences since the beginning of the armed conflict, which is why each of them has divergent beliefs; as the majority of people grew up influenced by the ideologies of their political party, that influence is still strong today. Since the dividing line across youth from different political parties still exists, youth need more space for political dialogue to overcome this barrier and build up confidence, trust and harmony. There is a need for creating a culture of respect for differences.
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Original Source: Search for Common Ground