After 2 years of continual lockdowns, Play for Peace was finally able to travel back to El Salvador on March 26th and 27th to host a club reactivation workshop. Excited to return to the country, Play for Peace Regional Coordinator, Andres Armas set out to meet the El Salvador Club in Suchitoto.
Thanks to the support of Mentors, Fatima and Alex, more than 15 participants from a range of age groups and different communities arrived at Fatima's permaculture farm where she resides. The workshop consisted of mainly new young people who had only heard about Play for Peace and were motivated to get involved.
The day flowed between laughter and deep discussion, including topics of the PFP methodology, community action, and youth leadership. While the level of COVID is minimal at times in El Salvador, the fear around traveling between communities remains a barrier.
Central America has consistently been among the most violent regions in the world for the past 40 years. Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador – also called “the northern triangle” are still experiencing the aftermath of decades of Civil War in the region that left a legacy of violence and fragile institutions.
Our session with El Salvador Club was a day that brought laughter, compassion, and peace while unfortunately was also a day of tragedy as well. The New York Times report shared: "Gangs went on a killing spree, gunning down anyone on the street. At least 62 were killed on Saturday, the deadliest day on record since the country’s civil war ended 30 years ago." https://www.nytimes.com/.../el-salvador-gang-violence.html
As gang violence has been on the rise, continued peace sessions are important in healing and rebuilding the community. Our hearts go out to the families who lost their loved ones during these tragic events and we continue our support of the region.