More needs to be done to help veterans of the Bougainville civil war, the Papua New Guinea head of NGO Conciliation Resources, Amie Kirkham, says.
About 20,000 Bougainvilleans are estimated to have died in the 10-year conflict between 1988 and 1998.
Ms Kirkham said research into the veterans showed progress in engaging with them, but also that they faced issues and required support.
While their leaders have often been engaged in reconciliation, the rank and file, which Ms Kirkham calls the 'Unheard Veterans', have much less opportunity to share their perspectives and challenges.
Research also showed divisions still exist within communities, with non-veterans fearing the veterans, and veterans saying they struggle to integrate, Ms Kirkham said.
"And that was linked to the ongoing stigma and some of the labels around what it means to be a veteran or an ex-combatant," she said.
"So there really was a strong ask coming from veterans and community members directly for more dialogue, more space to talk between veterans and community members about some of these challenges in an ongoing way."