On 24 December 2022, the Office of the Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region (OSESG-GL) announced "The Great Lakes Region Through Your Lens" Photo Contest (#OurRegionOurVision). The initiative was aimed at showcasing progress and ongoing efforts towards a more peaceful, stable, inclusive and prosperous Great Lakes region, in line with the Peace, Security and Cooperation (PSC) Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the region and the United Nations Strategy for Peace Consolidation, Conflict Prevention and Conflict Resolution in the Great Lakes Region.


The PSC Framework was signed in 2013 to help address the root causes of instability and put an end to recurring cycles of violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the wider region. It defines national, regional and international-level actions, thus providing space for countries in the Great Lakes region, regional organizations and international partners to work together towards peace, security, justice and development. The Framework is being implemented by 13 signatory countries, with the support of the so-called Guarantor Institutions (African Union, International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, Southern African Development Community, United Nations). Read more about the Framework here.

The United Nations Strategy for Peace Consolidation, Conflict Prevention and Conflict Resolution in the Great Lakes Region was approved in 2020. The Strategy, developed by OSESG-GL in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, including representatives from the countries in the region, proposes an integrated, forward-leaning approach that aims to better leverage the political, operational, and programmatic expertise of the United Nations in support of a peaceful, inclusive, prosperous, and resilient region. While prioritizing political solutions, the Strategy advocates for a shift in narrative beyond the traditional focus on conflict-related challenges that emphasizes opportunities for peace, security, and people-centered development. It puts forth ten priorities, structured around three pillars, which are to guide UN engagement in the region, in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, while also informing specific and immediate priority actions in the next three years. For more information on the Strategy, click here.


The Photo Contest is open to anyone from or based in the Great Lakes region above the age of 18 years - whether they are amateur or professional photographers. The photos must be taken in any of the 13 signatory countries of the PSC Framework: Angola, Burundi, the Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, South Sudan, the Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and/or Zambia. 


Photo entries will be assessed by a jury composed of OSESG-GL staff. The jury's selection will be based on the photos' composition, originality, responsiveness to the theme, and impact. One overall winner and four runners-up per thematic category will be selected and exhibited during the 10th anniversary commemoration of the PSC Framework, to be held on 24 February 2023 in Bujumbura, Burundi. The winning entries will also be showcased in OSESG-GL publications.


Participants may submit up to three photos via Email at: For each photo, participants will be asked to provide a title, a short description, the full name of the photographer as well as the location and date of the photo. Please read carefully the terms and conditions below.