3. Remote delivery of training

Rwanda News

Remote Delivery of Training

Due to the travel and assembly restrictions related to COVID-19, the Dallaire Initiative has come up with a creative approach to our international training. Fortunately, Rwanda already has a robust cadre of Dallaire Initiative trained facilitators on whom we can lean to deliver our training. As this highly skilled and motivated cadre was eager to get started, we only needed to find a way to reinforce and enable their efforts logistically so they could deliver our training packages from start to finish.

Our approach was to leverage technological tools in order to share the most up to date curriculum, briefing packages, and course content with our cadre of Rwandan facilitators. Concurrently, Dallaire Initiative trainers will conduct a series of live, virtual training sessions on what we call ‘Lead Facilitator Training’. This training is not meant to cover the content — as these instructors are already experienced and knowledgeable

Dr. Shelly Whitman, Executive Director of the Dallaire Institute, provides a lecture on International Humanitarian Law to senior-year law students at the University of Juba (June 2019).

Announcement- The Dallaire Institute for Children, Peace and Security

We are very pleased to announce that in April 2020, Dalhousie University’s Board of Governors officially approved the establishment of the Dallaire Institute for Children, Peace and Security. The Dallaire Initiative hopes to formally announce and celebrate this change in name and status with partners, friends and supporters in Fall 2020.

The newly-established Institute will seek to deepen collaborations with three main faculties at Dalhousie — Arts and Social Sciences, Health and the School of Law — in addition to establishing a Certificate in Children, Peace and Security, a Dalhousie research network and working group, as well as increasing our capacity to conduct guest lectures and partner on research proposals and grants in order to conduct mutually reinforcing, complementary, and groundbreaking research. This work will extend to deepening our connections to post-secondary and research institutions around the world, especially in our countries of operation.

The Dallaire Institute will continue pushing forward with our important work to prevent the recruitment and use of child soldiers through practical, prevention-oriented training with the security sector in numerous countries around the world, from our three locations in Halifax, Juba and Kigali.

(PHOTO) Dr. Shelly Whitman, Executive Director of the Dallaire Institute, provides a lecture on International Humanitarian Law to senior-year law students at the University of Juba (June 2019).


Allons-y Vol. 5 (2021) Call for Papers – Deadline extended

Allons-y: Journal of Children Peace and Security volume 5 (2021) will focus on gender and the implementation of the Vancouver Principles. The coming year will see events, reflections, and new research on the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, and the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action. Building on these events, the next volume of Allons-y is calling for policy-oriented papers from academics and practitioners on how consideration of gender is important for the successful implementation of the Vancouver Principles.

Suggested topics include:

  • Empirical work on the inclusion of women in peace operations in support of Principle 11;
  • The role gender plays in the implementation of the other principles;
  • Guidance on how practitioners can productively move beyond the conception of gender- meaning-women that is all too common in current policy and practice;
  • The relationship between the Vancouver Principles and Canada’s feminist international assistance policy or other nations’ feminist foreign policies;
  • The interaction between the Vancouver Principles and the Elsie Initiative for Women in Peace Operations;
  • Or other relevant topics relating to gender, peace operations, and child soldiers.

Allons-y: Journal of Children, Peace and Security publishes three types of articles: commentaries, policy articles, and research articles, and proposed articles should conform to one of these categories. Commentaries provide reflections and analysis by experienced practitioners, academics, and policy makers on issues relevant to the Vancouver Principles. Policy articles form the core of Allons-y and focus on evaluating, sharing, and recommending good practices for policies related to implementation of the Vancouver Principles globally. Research articles provide synthesis of existing research or novel empirical and theoretical findings of relevance to the implementation of the Vancouver Principles.

Interested authors should provide an abstract of 100 words, a short bio, their affiliation, and indicate whether they are proposing a commentary or policy or research article by 1 June 2020 to both [email protected] and [email protected].

Authors of accepted abstracts will be informed by 15 June 2020, and asked to submit their article by 1 October 2020. Peer review and revisions will occur between then and 31 January 2021, and the issue will be published at the end of March 2021.



The Slaight Family Foundation announces $15M Global Initiative for Women and Girls

TORONTO (MARCH 3, 2020) – To mark International Women’s Day, The Slaight Family Foundation is donating $15 million to 15 international organizations working to improve human rights and opportunities for women and girls.

The recipient organizations – working mainly in impoverished, fragile or conflict-affected areas – each focus on different issues facing women and girls, including human rights abuses, child marriages, sex trafficking, legal support, HIV and AIDS and education.

“The aim of this gift is to improve conditions for women and girls living in difficult circumstances, who represent some of the world’s most vulnerable populations,” said Gary Slaight of The Slaight Family Foundation. “The projects we are funding will leverage the expertise of these vital organizations to protect women and girls in the most fragile countries from direct harm, rebuild the lives of those who have been unjustly affected by conflict, deprivation and disease and give them the tools and support they need to survive and thrive.”

“This investment in international NGOs is unprecedented and the projects being supported will directly assist more than one million women and girls in some of the world’s most fragile regions,” said Dr. Samantha Nutt, President of War Child Canada. “It’s such an important time to be highlighting this issue. For The Slaight Family Foundation to recognize the threats faced by women and girls, and acknowledge that their concerns matter with such an historic gift, is a profound message to send. On behalf of the entire group we extend our sincerest gratitude to The Slaight Family Foundation for their incredible support of our collective work.”

Since 2013, The Slaight Family Foundation has funded several strategic initiatives to multiple organizations. These initiatives started with gifts to five Toronto hospitals to support priority healthcare issues, followed by programs to address global humanitarianism, healthy development of children and youth across Canada, support for Indigenous issues and, last year, a seniors’ initiative to help keep seniors in their homes and communities, including the Allan Slaight Seniors’ Fund at the United Way Greater Toronto.

Project Information

AIDS-Free World

Sub-Saharan African countries with UN peacekeeping missions and high rates of HIV in women

Develop and roll out a smartphone app to tap young women’s unique knowledge of and solutions to living under the threat of sexual violence. Women in remote areas who answer open-ended, recorded questions orally, in private, as easily as leaving a voicemail message, will be transformed from victims with lived experiences to experts helping to end sexual violence against women.

Canadian Feed the Children


Creation of a new ‘Livelihood & Gender Equality Fund’ championing the human rights of girls and women in Ethiopia. We will focus on reducing the forced migration of girls and women by helping them finish their education and improve future prospects including starting new, sustainable businesses through an agribusiness hub to develop female entrepreneurship. The initiative includes a sexual and reproductive health and rights campaign, strengthening community police, legal and healthcare systems, and a new research study on child migration.

Canadian Red Cross

South Sudan/Central Africa Republic

The Canadian Red Cross is launching an innovative program that brings health solutions directly into crisis and conflict areas, reaching women and girls who are cut off from health facilities due to violence. Essential health care and supplies delivered by local Red Cross responders will increase safe pregnancies, improve nutrition, and provide access to clean water and lifesaving treatments for disease.

CARE Canada


Innovate and improve menstrual hygiene management for school-age girls with female genital mutilation – develop and test new solutions with established women and girls’ groups, train women to produce hygiene products locally, improve school sanitation facilities and increase community awareness.

Crossroads International


The program will increase access to gender-responsive heath services and launch a youth-led awareness campaign for sexual and reproductive health rights among adolescent girls and boys at risk of child trafficking, forced prostitution, child labour and sexual violence in Kedougou, Senegal.

Human Rights Watch

Middle East/N Africa

End discrimination of women and girls by documenting the abuses of male guardianship system in the Middle East and North Africa. Year 1 will focus on documenting male guardianship in Qatar; how lack of domestic violence legislation and discriminatory laws leaves women exposed to domestic violence in Kuwait; and the start of mapping how and where male guardianship exists in the region.

Partners In Health Canada

Malawi & Sierra Leone

Improved access to sexual and reproductive health services especially for adolescents, strengthened care for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence, and increased availability of high-quality obstetric care. Activities include health worker training, resourcing and delivery of clinical care, educational initiatives for young people, and community-based work to raise awareness about women’s and girls’ rights and promote health seeking behaviour.

Right To Play


Transform the lives of more than 50,000 girls across Mozambique through a gender-responsive education program that removes barriers to access, builds teacher capacity, and positively impacts national programs and policies. The result will be higher literacy rates, lower drop-out rates, and a generation of girls who are better supported to succeed.

Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative
Helping reduce child soldier recruitment and conflict-based sexual violence through capacity building of national military and police forces, with a focus on female force members; enhance the Dallaire Initiative’s cadre of female international trainers and global champions; raise awareness amongst the global community on the critical role of women in preventing the recruitment and use of child soldiers.

Save the Children

Sierra Leone

Improve knowledge and skills of adolescent girls and boys to be aware of and exercise their rights around sexual and reproductive health and gender equality, to be able to make their own informed decisions related to marriage and pregnancy. This action will transform harmful practices and attitudes that reinforce gender inequalities and gender-based violence and strengthen the institutional and policy environment to prevent child early and forced marriage.

Stephen Lewis Foundation

Sub-Saharan Africa

Expand holistic programmes that address gender inequalities to improve access to HIV prevention services, and support treatment adherence for women and girls living with HIV. Expand the global grandmothers movement through Grandmother Gatherings. Empower grandmothers caring for children orphaned by AIDS to claim their human rights and lead their communities, through peer support, healthcare, skills training, economic empowerment and advocacy.



In Somalia, only 30 per cent of children attend primary school with girls accounting for less than half of the total enrollment. This project will focus on girls and children with disabilities to improve their access to early childhood education (ECE) services. Community based and alternative ECE programs will be established in rural areas and provide appropriate curriculum that caters to the children’s different needs. It will also include education for parents and communities so that they can better support their children’s education.

War Child


Empower women and girls to seek justice and tackle impunity within their communities by providing critical legal support for those affected by or at risk of gender-based violence; through targeted educational programming, ensure that girls can uphold their rights, have greater self-determination, and move out of poverty over the long-term.

WE Charity

Sierra Leone (Kono District)

Focus on advancing the rights of vulnerable women and girls by empowering them with the tools, support and skills to bring an end to inter-generational cycles of poverty and injustice. The three-part program will implement training to address human rights abuses and threats affecting them. Part one will deliver community-wide training to create greater awareness about women’s rights and human rights abuses. Part two will provide vulnerable women and girls education on their rights, referral support and life skills to increase their opportunities. Part three will offer the highest-risk women and girls vocational training and accelerated learning opportunities.

World Vision


Implement the DREAM program – Dedicated to Reducing Early Marriage in Mali – to address the root cause of child marriage; will include sexual and reproductive health services, education and economic livelihood training; upgrading schools with girls washrooms, training parents, teachers, and faith leaders on the consequences of child marriage; train mothers and girls in financial literacy, life skills and income generating activities to increase household income.

For more information:

Jeri Brown, Media Profile

[email protected]

Office: 416-342-1834 Mobile: 416-455-7188

The Dallaire Initiative Marks The Day Against The Use Of Child Soldiers

HALIFAX, NS – On February 10th, The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative (Dallaire Initiative), in partnership with Dalhousie University’s Open Dialogue Series, is hosting a public discourse to mark the International Day against the Use of Child Soldiers.  

The discussion will be moderated by award-winning CBC journalist, Nahlah Ayed, and feature two speakers who experienced and understand the impacts of war on children, Omar Khadr and celebrated author and human rights activist Ishmael Beah. The event will also feature the organization’s Founder, LGen the Hon. Roméo Dallaire (ret’d) and Executive Director, Dr. Shelly Whitman.  

The event aims to nurture improved understanding of how children around the world are recruited and used by adults into conflict and violence. By examining the issue from multiple perspectives, the Dallaire Initiative hopes to provide deep and meaningful insights into how children are vulnerable to being recruited and used in violence, that takes many different forms, but ultimately have the same long-term and psycho-social impacts on the children and their communities.  

“As the global organization at the forefront of preventing children from being recruited and used in conflict, we have an obligation to foster public dialogue on this issue, with the aim to  break cycles of endemic violence around the world, and even here in Canada,” says Dr. Whitman.  “We understand this is a highly complex issue, but one that deserves serious attention if we are to achieve peace and security. The Dallaire Initiative is proud to be able to continue to convene timely and critical discussions that bring together diverse groups here at our institutional home in Halifax – Dalhousie University.”

The discussion is part of Dalhousie University’s Open Dialogue series which brings the community together for thought-provoking conversations focused on timely and relevant topics. The series also supports the university’s vital role in sparking dialogue around important issues.  

The event will also mark the Dallaire Initiative’s 10th anniversary at Dalhousie University. It will be hosted at the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium and recorded for possible use in an episode of CBC Ideas.

Event Details

What: The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative in partnership with Dalhousie University’s Open Dialogue Series, public discourse with Omar Khadr, Ishmael Beah, and LGen the Hon. Roméo Dallaire 

When: Monday, February 10, 2020. Registration starts at 5:30, doors open at 6, event 7-9 

Where: Rebecca Cohn Auditorium, Dalhousie Arts Centre6101 University Ave, Halifax, NS B3H 4R2 

Note: For security reasons, all coats will need to be checked and no large bags will be allowed into the auditorium.

Media Advisory 

We anticipate a high level of media interest in this event. There will be limited space for media. 

All media-related inquiries in advance of this event will be solely handled by the Executive Director of the Dallaire Initiative, Dr. Shelly Whitman. Omar Khadr will not be speaking to the media.  

  • Media organizations wishing to attend the event must apply for accreditation by emailing: [email protected] with their name and media outlet.  
  • If accepted, media must present media and personal identification upon arrival to the media reception desk. 
  • There will be an area for media reserved in the Rebecca Cohn and media must remain in this area during the event. 
  • Photography, video and audio recordings of the event are not permitted.  

Media contact 

Aimee White, Chief of Staff

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative


[email protected]

About the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative  


Founded by retired Lieutenant-General and celebrated humanitarian Roméo Dallaire, The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative is a global partnership committed to ending the recruitment and use of child soldiers worldwide, through ground-breaking research, advocacy, and security-sector training.


Statement to Commemorate Red Hand Day

Dr. Shelly Whitman

Letter from Dr. Shelly Whitman

Executive Director of The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative

Some 250 million children are affected  armed conflict around the globe. Today, in every conflict that exists, children are vulnerable to being recruited and used by adults. Their tactical and strategic use sustains and increases the severity of conflict while tearing at the fabric of societies affected by war.

This February 12th, the International Day Against the Use of Child Soldiers (Red Hand Day), offers us an opportunity to reflect on this sober reality and discuss how we can ultimately work towards ending the use of children as soldiers.

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative continues to be at the forefront of this fight, developing innovative tools and training for the security sector – military, police, prison personnel and peacekeepers—while creating ground-breaking research and high-level advocacy to create new solutions.

To mark Red Hand Day we are launching the third edition of our landmark publication, Child Soldiers: A Handbook for Security Sector Actors and the first edition of our maritime handbook, Children Used in Maritime Piracy: A Handbook for Maritime Security Sector Actors. These two handbooks aim to proactively and positively engage the security sector actors to prioritize the prevention of the use of child soldiers as a critical element to the protection of children and conflict prevention measures.

Canada has now taken the lead to ensure this ethos and approach is undertaken by the Canadian Armed Forces through the development of a Doctrine on Child Soldiers. The significance of this doctrine cannot be understated. Within its lines, not only is a baseline set for how Canada understands and actively assists in preventing the use of child soldiers, but how we will better prepare the men and women who face this reality in the field. Read our full statement on this important step forward here.

In a world of competing priorities, it is important we elevate the need to protect children from violence and abuse. A Children’s Rights Upfront approach will build points of collaboration and create momentum on the international peace and security agenda.  The concerted efforts of many are required to create a world where children are no longer used as weapons of war.

All forward together,

Dr. Shelly Whitman





Grant Paid Job Opportunity: Program Administration Officer Rom

POSTING NUMBER: GPD-(we will assign)

POSTING DATE: November 2, 2016

CLOSING DATE: November 20, 2016


The Programme Administration Officer will be an integral part of all the programmatic pillars (training, research, and advocacy) and will work with senior leadership and all staff to achieve quality outputs and ensure outcomes of two key programs. Under the direction of the Executive Director and Director of Training, this position will be responsible for the overall administration of two key programs; VTECS and Building Connections: Police-Youth-Community Partnerships for Extreme Violence Prevention. The Programme Administration Officer will be responsible for facilitating workshops with youth, community members and police officers, planning a large scale conference and being the key contact person between police and community partners in Edmonton, Montreal, Toronto and Halifax. For both program, this position is responsible for preparing all program materials including agendas, PowerPoints, joining instructions, letters, briefs, activity reports, work plans, and all internal and external coordination correspondence.


  • Supports senior leadership with the effective coordination and delivery of 2 key Dallaire Initiative programs – milestones, deliverables, and activities
  • Supports senior leadership on tasks related to training, research, and advocacy deliverables for the Dallaire Initiative within the scope of the programs
  • Provides high level coordination for project implementation and acts as the centralized project leader for internal activities and external relations
  • Manages the day to day project activities and executes project actions
  • Provides substantive information and guidance and ongoing support and advice through planned and regular updates, progress reports, and final reports that contribute to a deeper understating of project frameworks


  • Master

Media Advisory: Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers

For Immediate Release

Media advisory


Canadian Veterans Join the Fight Against Child Soldiers

Toronto, Ontario, February, 8th – On February 10th, Wounded Warriors Canada will present LGen Roméo Dallaire and the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative with a $175 000 investment towards the pilot year of the Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers (VTECS) program. Held at the Royal Military Institute, remarks will be made by LGen Roméo Dallaire, Founder of the Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative and Scott Maxwell, Executive Director of Wounded Warriors Canada. Following the 11:00am cheque presentation, a joint press conference will be held.

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative (Dallaire Initiative), is enlisting Canadian veterans in its global fight against child soldiers with the launch of the Veteran Trainers to Eradicate the Use of Child Soldiers (VTECS) program on February 10th. Delivered with the support of Wounded Warriors Canada, the programs, will build on the valuable knowledge, experience and insight Canadian veterans possess to deliver specialized training to prevent the use of child soldiers.

Based out of the Dallaire Initiative’s home, Dalhousie University, the VTECS program will equip Canadian veterans with specialized skills and knowledge to help deliver the Dallaire Initiative’s ground breaking work to prevent the use of child soldiers. Graduates of the VTECS program will help prepare their security sector peers for encounters with child soldiers and strengthen their ability to recognize and interrupt recruitment.

Location: The Royal Military Institute, 426 University Ave., Toronto, ON.

Date: February­­ 10th, 2015

Time: 11:00 am


For more information, please contact:


Media contacts:

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative

Josh Boyter

[email protected]

1 902 494 2392 (office)

1 902 489. 6767 (cell)

Wounded Warriors Canada

Scott Maxwell

[email protected]



About the organizations

The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative

The Dallaire Initiative, based at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, is recognized as the only organization in the world that is taking a prevention-oriented, security sector focused approach to the crime against humanity that is child soldiery. Founded by retired lieutenant-general and celebrated humanitarian Roméo Dallaire, The Roméo Dallaire Child Soldiers Initiative is a global partnership committed to ending the use and recruitment of child soldiers worldwide, through ground-breaking research, advocacy, and security-sector training.

Wounded Warriors Canada

Wounded Warriors Canada is a non-profit organization that supports Canada’s ill and injured Canadian Armed Forces members, Veterans, First Responders and their families. Through a wide range of national programs and services, Wounded Warriors is dedicated to providing programs focused on mental health and, particularly, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.