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Introducing myself and my journal

About Me:
I am the mother of two daughters and have two grandchildren.
I hold a Master's degree in Human Security and Peacebuilding, and my particular interests are in how people build and maintain peace after conflict. I maintain Hopebuilding wiki as a place to share stories of peoples' achievement, and blog at, and I welcome you to visit both.
You can see my pictures at
I am a Certified Professional Facilitator and I edit the IAF Europe Newsletter, which shares information about the work of facilitators in Europe.


Fatima Waziri's picture

Hey there! Welcome to

Hey there! Welcome to PulseWire!

It’s so exciting having you with us, I am sure you will have a fabulous time with your new online friends as well as find this to be a very positive experience. I encourage you to take advantage of the numerous resources and features available through our vibrant online community.

Welcome again to our global community and I look forward to hearing more from you here on PulseWire!


Zin Zar's picture

There is a will, there is a way!

Good morning Grandma ( for Burma' s time ),
I do appreciate your work . Don't give up . I will contact to some friends from Pulse Wire in case to get any suggestion. If I am on your age , I also want to spend my time for others so that I will .

Your lovely!
Zin Zar

RosemaryC's picture

Celebrating age!

Dear Zin Zar:

Thanks for your note. In the last year or so, I have spent quite a bit of time in Africa, where people celebrate the older people in their midst (though I don't really feel old...). In Congo, people called me "Mama", as they do with older people as a sign of respect. How do people address older people in Burma? Do they have something similar to "Mama" as they do in Congo?

Kind regards,

RosemaryC's picture

Sharing about Hopebuilding

Dear friends:

I have been so inspired by reading the posts this week about the power of 2.0 for connecting women worldwide and at a personal level. It occurred to me I should share my web 2.0 story - how I came to create Hopebuilding, a wiki that shares stories of achievement from around the world.

I worked on a major international development project in Serbia in 2001-2003. I eventually realized that the design of projects like that one grew out of a conversation that was going on among policymakers and governments about how to rebuild countries that had experienced conflict. I wanted to be part of that conversation but I didn't know the language. So I went back to university and studied Human Security and Peacebuilding, so I could learn the terminology of this conversation.

While I was studying, I read a great deal, because I really wanted to learn (in a way I hadn't done earlier in my life). I discovered that the concept of "fragile" states was influencing the discussion. Some influential academics and policy makers felt that those states didn't have good governance (or maybe any governance) and so someone needed to "help" them. And I realized there were a lot of underlying concepts in that discussion, that weren't being discussed openly. Gradually, instead of looking for what wasn't working in those places, I began to look for what was working.

So I began to look for stories about what local people were doing in countries that were in conflict. I discovered that many people locally were working on building peace, on rebuilding their society - in fact, some had never stopped doing that, even as the conflict was going on. Analysts began to call this 'social capital', and they began to look for it - and of course, when they looked for it, they found it. But many of those stories of local achievement weren't well known. And there were similar stories happening in my own country, Canada. In fact, even though Canada was seen as a 'developed' country, we shared many of the problems that we were wanting to fix elsewhere, and we could use achievements from those other places to help us. And those stories weren't well known either.

I discovered the work of the Community Development Resource Association in Cape Town, South Africa, which was talking about 'horizontal learning" - neighbours learning from neighbours - vs. "vertical learning' - people being reliant on experts. And I realized that all over the world, this kind of horizontal learning was helping people create change and build peace at the local level, often without any outside resources. People could do lots of things for themselves, if they believed in themselves and their capacity, and there were lots of examples to inspire them.

I began to realize that for many of us, no matter what country we live in, 'governance' at the top of the state is not so very relevant to our daily lives. What matters to us is our friends, our family, our work, our local groups, and our local networks. Those are where we put our energy, and from which we get our energy. For us, that is 'governance' that matters.

So I began to wonder, what would happen if we could share those stories of neighbour to neighbour development, so that people could learn about an idea in one country and then see if there was a way they could apply it in their country? I had been collecting a lot of those stories as I studied at the university, but I wasn't sure how I could share them most effectively.

Then I discovered that there was a concept called a "wiki", that allowed for a participatory kind of website. I had to learn to get comfortable with the technology and it took me some experiments to get it right. Slowly, however, I began to collect more and more stories of how people were creating change at the local level in their own country. I have been doing this work now for almost five years, and now there are more than 670 stories on Hopebuilding.

I invite you to visit, and let me know what you think.

Kindest regards to all,

Rita Raj's picture

A deliberated Journey

i so agree that it is the local governance, that impacts on us directly and our networks and probably the place one can bring about maximum change. Vertical learning builds networks and groups - the self help groups in India are potential for the ground level swelling for working with local governance to fulfill state obligations.

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