Ayiko Solomon, Alumnus
As a child, Ayiko Solomon (BA ’08) lived through unspeakable abuse and the dangers of a 20-year war in Uganda that has destroyed villages, torn families apart and seen more than 30,000 children abducted by rebels and forced to become child soldiers.
Now 34, Solomon is a Canadian citizen, a recent graduate of Laurier’s global studies program and the founder of the charitable organization Peace For All International (PFAI).
“There were times when I was treated as if I was less than human. I kept waiting for love and finding nothing,” he quietly remembers. “I just can’t get away from my mind that there is still a child just like I was, waiting.”
It’s what drives Solomon’s life work. He began PFAI in 2007 during his final year at Laurier with the encouragement of professors Dr. Adam Davidson-Harden and Dr. Len Friesen. Its mission is to build peace, promote healing and create sustainable development on the ground in northern Uganda. Solomon has returned to his home country several times to work at the grassroots level to deliver his message.
“We can talk about peace all day,” Solomon says. “But if at the end of the day, one woman or child over there does not have money or access to education, nothing will change.”