Throughout CEPAD’s 2007-2009 countrywide consultations, participants consistently identified the need to establish neutral spaces for community dialogue, as a key platform to facilitate peace building.
Addressing this need, Peace Houses were developed, based on the traditional Timorese custom of ‘rolling out the mat’ (nahe-biti boot) – or meeting to discuss and resolve disputes. These safe, neutral and community owned venues act as a bridge between municipalities and Timor-Leste’s capital by fostering local debates and linking these to issues of national importance. Peace Houses are also designed to host a range of complementary activities that bring people together and encourage civil society participation, including youth group meetings, workshops on craft commercialization and language classes.
CEPAD and local communities have so far launched five Peace Houses in the municipalities of Bobonaro, Baucau, Aileu, Ermera and Manufahi. The construction of the Manatutu Peace House was launched in August 2015.
Aisirimou village, Aileu Municipality. Construction launched November 2010, inaugurated August 2011.
Fatin : Triloka village, Baucau Municipality. Construction launched March 2011, inaugurated October 2011.
Holsa village, Bobonaru Municipality. Construction launched August 2011, inaugurated December 2011.