IMPASUGONG, Bukidnon- Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc. in partnership with 8th Infantry “Dependable” Battalion successfully conducted a three-day peace training dubbed as “Operation Peace Course (OPKors)” Training at Battalion Headquarters, Impasugong, Bukidnon on August 13-15, 2019.

The army CSP teams and civilian peace-builder participants prepared themselves for the training knowing the aim that is to give knowledge on peaceful solutions to conflicts existing in the community. Also, the training encourages them to include peaceful resolutions to conflict instead of resulting to violence. Force-field analysis, conflict analysis, and conflict mapping as tools in resolving conflict were also taught during the training which are essential in determining possible peaceful solutions to the conflicts existing in the community.

Charlito Zamora Manlupig, founder and the Chairperson of Balay Mindanaw, emphasized why peace building is important, “After the gunfight, what does the soldiers do? As soldiers, if there is no war in your area, you should engage in the community and the people to take a closer look on the problem. You don’t just immerse in the community and see the situations in the surface level – you should assess deeper to know what the community needs and what you can provide to address the needs of the people. As you become peace builders, after this training, you will see the real situations under the surface problems and analyze what you should do and provide interventions to resolve conflicts.” He explained.

Lt. Colonel Ronald M Illana, the battalion commander of 8IB also encouraged the troops and other participants to understand the modules, “When we had the Operation Peace Course at PMA, we had different comments about the training – We were trained to fight for four years and yet they wanted us to lay down our arms and do peace talks instead. But, in the context, this is very interesting training as you go back to your company, to your Community Support Program areas, always remember that violence cannot be always resolved by war fight, let us always resort to a solution where there would be no more bringing fuel to the fire.” He emphasized.