Sierra Leone is a small country in West Africa between Guinea and Liberia. Despite its ample natural resources, the country ranks among the world's least developed countries, due to a decade of ethnic strife, corruption and war since 1991 when rebel insurgencies in neighboring Liberia plunged the country into chaos. Although the civil conflict ended in 2001, Sierra Leoneans still face poverty, high youth unemployment and food insecurity. Nonetheless, the Government of Sierra Leone has been making significant efforts to rebuild the war-ravaged country with the support of the PBC and the international community.
Upon request from the Government of Sierra Leone, the Security Council solicited the advice of the PBC in June 2006. At a meeting of the PBC's Organizational Committee on 23 June 2006, Sierra Leone was selected as one of the first two countries to be considered by the body, alongside Burundi. Working in close cooperation with the Government of Sierra Leone, the UN Country Team (UNIOSIL) and other key stakeholders, the PBC developed the Cooperation Framework for Peacebuilding in Sierra Leone. The Cooperation Framework – or the Strategic Framework – contains an analysis of priorities and challenges for peacebuilding, roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders, and an agreement to establish a monitoring and tracking mechanism to measure progress.
The Cooperation Framework identifies the following challenges that need to be addressed in the country to lay the foundation for sustainable peace and development:
- Youth employment and empowerment.
- Consolidation of democracy and good governance.
- Justice and security sector reform.
- Energy sector development.
- Sub-regional dimensions of peacebuilding.
And the cross-cutting issues of:
- Gender equality.
- Human rights.
Together for a Better Peace actively engages with the Sierra Leone Configuration at UN headquarters and civil society partners in Burundi. Through civil society consultations in Sierra Leone and briefings of Sierra Leone Configuration members at the UN, Together for a Better Peace helps ensure that civil society organizations are meaningful partners in building peace in Sierra Leone. Civil society organizations in Sierra Leone self-organize to consult on peacebuilding challenges and opportunities, as well as to monitor the meeting of commitments by various stakeholders.
Find key documents for the Sierra Leone Configuration on the PBC's website here.