How family unity helped PSELF Fellow bag the Global Peace Award

On December 21st last year, Eliud Karani was honoured and received the Global Peace Award, a prestigious recognition for his efforts in saving a family from breaking up.

Karani, a civil servant in the State Department of Social Protection and Senior Citizen Affairs, is a cohort Two Fellow at the Public Service Emerging Leaders Fellowship Programme (PSELF).

PSELF is jointly implemented by Emerging Leaders Foundation-Africa, Emerging Public Leaders, the Chandler Institute of Governance, and the Public Service Commission.

With the help of some religious leaders, Karani helped unify a family that was on the verge of breaking up because one of the partners was HIV positive while the other was negative.

Such couples often face serious sexual and social challenges, and in this case, it threatened to tear them apart even though they have two small children.

 “My heart went out to the two children, and I vowed to do everything possible to help keep the family united,” he said.

During one of the PSELF sessions, Karani recalled one of the facilitators urging them to “find their little thing, then go about the business of doing it.”

This famous quote from the founder of the Green Belt Movement and the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Wangari Maathai inspired him to make fighting for peace in this family become his ‘little thing’.

Through his untiring effort that saw the family remain united, Eliud showed the role that mediation can play. It’s a feat he attributes to lessons from conflict resolution at Chandler Institute. Chandler Institute is one of the partners who prepare the curriculum for the training of the Fellows.

“Managing conflict is one of the free courses offered by the Institute,” he says.

Karani, who is one of the three presidents of Cohort Two, says PSELF training has earned him respect from his superiors in the department. Through the training, he has developed Citizen-centric services.

“I can put in extra hours at work if it will help someone who is seeking our services,” he says.

This has helped him register over 2,000 senior citizens in his sub-county. He has also learned the importance of integrity and value-based leadership in his service.

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