We had an eye-opening meeting with some people from the Protestant Shankill community this morning. One of the men we met was an ex-prisoner and the other was a former para-military, in short, these men were intimately involved in the Troubles on the loyalist side. In the years since peace they have galvanized their passions and drive towards building a better community for the youth of Belfast. One man said “If we were a part of the problem, we better be a part of the solution”, an impressive statement for positive change. Both men expressed the importance of inter-community dialogue stating, “you may be in a room talking about peace with someone you know killed your uncle, but if that’s what it takes for peace – we have to do it”. Surprisingly it seems those most involved in the conflict are now the most involved in forming peaceful inter-community relationships and those who stayed on the sidelines can tend to become more militant. It seems as if they have seen enough fighting and are now dedicated to a more diverse and peaceful Belfast.