• CIDT facilitate learning from 2 years of Plan UK evaluations

    8 November 2016
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    Plan UK report coverCIDT consultants, Ella Haruna, Rufsana Begum and Canford Chiroro, were contracted to carry out a meta-analysis of external project evaluations relating to Plan UK programming over a two year period. The review aimed to draw out the learning from these evaluations, research reports and case studies to better understand and evidence the changes that are happening in the lives of adolescent girls as a result of Plan UK’s work.

    The team reviewed 55 documents and carried out an initial mapping of the evidence available to select qualifying data for inclusion in the meta-analysis exercise, based on an criteria agreed with Plan UK. A rapid review of the evidence selected from 17 countries drew out key learning across different thematic areas of Plan UK’s work including Education, Protection, Economic Security and Sexual and Reproductive Rights; and an in-depth evidence review was conducted. Consultants successfully delivered two feedback workshop to Plan UK representatives in London, and delivered a 37 page learning report.

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  • Independent Qualitative Research Study of Camfed’s Girls Education Challenge Step Change Window Project in Tanzania and Zimbabwe

    3 November 2016
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    Validation workshop

    Validation workshopIn September to October 2016, four CIDT consultants, Mary Surridge, Lilla Oliver, Sarah Thomas and Rufsana and two external consultants in Zimbabwe and Tanzania were contracted to undertake a qualitative study of Camfed’s Girls’ Education Challenge Step Change Window (GEC SCW) project in Tanzania and Zimbabwe, in order to contribute to, and complement the quantitative end line survey and better understand which elements of the project are working (or not), how and why.

    Camfed’s GEC SCW project targets marginalised girls in rural communities of Zimbabwe and Tanzania with an aim of increasing girls’ retention through a full cycle of early secondary education and improving their opportunities to learn.  The project interventions are targeted in 24 districts in Zimbabwe and 11 in Tanzania, in 991 secondary schools, and include:

    • Providing financial support to meet girls’ material needs, combined with targeted local initiatives to tackle obstacles to girls’ retention and ensure a supportive educational environment.
    • Developing and distributing low-cost, self-directed study guides in core curriculum subjects to support academic learning as well as a broader life skills curriculum.
    • Enabling young women on leaving school to play a role as Learner Guides, supporting children in their local schools while gaining status and opportunities.
    • Reinforcing existing local government and community structures to respond to the needs of marginalised girls, safeguard their rights and entitlements and reinforce children protection, and ultimately to influence policy.
    • Pioneering use of mobile technology to capture real-time data about girls, their schools and communities, and to open up opportunities for networking and access to educational resources.
    • Engaging with national education partners to develop and review the approach under the GEC, and to identify opportunities for key lessons and practices to be adopted more widely.

    The consultants travelled to various districts including, Gokwe, Umguza, Kibaha and Harare in Zimbabwe and Rufiji, Morogoro, Handeni and Pangani in Tanzania to conduct their evaluation. They met with a broad range of in-country actors and stakeholders, including schools, headteachers, teachers, District Operations Secretariats/District Coordinators, Community Development Committees, School Development Committees (Zimbabwe only), Ministry of Education District Education Officers, local officials, community groups, male and female students and young girls involved in the project.

    Following the country visit, the consultants successfully delivered a validation workshop in Zimbabwe and Tanzania, with stakeholders, including CAMFED representatives presenting the preliminary findings and will merge both country findings to deliver a final research report.

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  • CIDT facilitates workshops on Managing For Development Results (MfDR) in the areas of Gender and Youth in Africa

    10 October 2016
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    As part of its Africa for Results Initiative (AfriK4R), the African Community of Practice on Managing for Development Results (AfCoP-MfDR) – which is chaired by the African Development Bank (AfDB)* – recently held two workshops to provide participants with practical MfDR tools and strategies for developing a results culture in their groups and communities. These were:

    • The Gender for Results (G4R) Knowledge and Training Event held on August 24-26, 2016 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire
    • The Youth for Results (Y4R) Knowledge and Training Event held on August 31-Sept. 2, 2016 in Dakar, Senegal

    The overall goal the workshops was to inform, dialogue with and empower African gender leaders, by enhancing their abilities and roles as change agents to help trigger and accelerate Africa’s transformation. The specific objectives were to:

    • Train the G4R Thematic Group on MfDR in the context of Gender; and train the Y4R Thematic Group on MfDR in the context of Youth
    • Foster discussions on achieving results within the AfriK4R, including discussions on the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (for the G4R group) and on the role of youth in the Agenda 2063 and implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
    • Offer networking opportunities among members and with donors and/or development organisation representatives, involving exchange/sharing of best practices and success inspiration
    • Agree upon the content and the implementation of the G4R and Y4R Action Plans

    CIDT’s Mary Surridge and Kimberly Kane prepared the materials for the sessions on Gender, Youth and MfDR. Participant manuals on Gender for Results (G4R) and Youth for Results (Y4R) were produced in both English and French, along with case studies and sector-specific examples for the application of MfDR tools such as problem analysis, stakeholder analysis, options analysis, risk management, and LogFrames.

    These materials were well appreciated by the client, having attested that: These Manuals proved to be very useful for the understanding by the AfCoP G4R and Y4R groups. Their tailoring enabled each group to gain a specific case study in their field and this approach resonated with their concerns, issues and needs.”

    CIDT’s Mary Surridge facilitated the two workshops. Participants came from more than 25 different countries in the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Western African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) regions. A total of 36 women leaders and approximately 11 AfDB/AfCoP personnel attended the G4R event; and 40 youth leaders and 8 AfDB/AfCoP personnel participated in the Y4R event.

    Both workshops were extremely well received. They were highly participatory, with the delegates practicing the use of each of the MfDR tools. The quality of the discussion generated was high and the activities provided opportunities for debate and dialogue about the key issues facing initiatives to increase gender equality and the empowerment of female and male youth.

     “We appreciated the diligence of CIDT and its professionalism from inception, preparation to reporting. The AfCoP Secretariat, hosted by the African Development Bank, would therefore highly recommend CIDT to other organizations,” said Dr. Julie Ladel, Chair of AfCoP.

    * Note: AfDB, in partnership with the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), provides support to AfCoP members to strengthen development processes in countries and regional economic communities. It partners with COMESA and WAEMU to accelerate regional policy implementation through MfDR tools and principles.

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  • Completion of CABI Gender Resource Pack

    26 September 2016
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    CABI Gender Handbook Completion

    CABI gender handbook completionIn October to November 2015, a gender appraisal was conducted by two CIDT consultants Mary Surridge and Rufsana Begum, in four case study countries to assist Plantwise to operationalize its Gender Strategy and better embed gender and diversity in the Programme. A follow-up workshop was held with all CABI Country Coordinators and other CABI staff at the Annual Planning in Switzerland.

    Plantwise (PW) is a global programme, led by CABI, to increase food security and improve rural livelihoods by reducing crop losses. Sustainable networks of local plant clinics provide farmers with practical plant health advice, reinforced by the Plantwise Knowledge Bank, an online gateway to plant health information. Working in close partnership with relevant actors (mainly government extension workers), PW strengthens national plant health systems from within, enabling countries to provide farmers with the knowledge they need to lose less and feed more. Currently, Plantwise works in 34 countries.

    As a result of the gender appraisal, Mary and Rufsana were contracted again to further enhance the capability of Plantwise to embed gender and diversity in its programme by building on the findings and recommendations from the gender appraisal. This included: the development of a Gender Resource Pack for all country staff to improve the extent to which they embed gender within their programmes and providing targeted suggestions for amendments to Plant Doctor Training modules to ensure that gender and social inclusion are embedded at appropriate points in the modules.

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  • Endline Evaluation for CAMFED’s Supporting Young Women to Lead Change in Rural Malawi

    20 September 2016
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    CAMFED’s Supporting Young Women to Lead Change in Rural Malawi

    CAMFED’s Supporting Young Women to Lead Change in Rural Malawi
    CIDT consultants Mary Surridge and Rufsana Begum were contracted along with two regional consultants to conduct an Endline evaluation for CAMFED’s Supporting Young Women to Lead Change in Rural Malawi project.

    Camfed has been implementing a three year project support by a grant of final evaluation of $1.7m from the Human Dignity Foundation. The project was aimed at supporting young rural women to lead change through support to the development and structure of the Camfed Association (CAMA), the alumnae network of educated young women who have completed school with Camfed’s support, in Malawi.

    The project supported young women who had graduated school. They were given an opportunity to join an alumnae network which provided them with an opportunity to peer support, training and financial resources. The selected young women received training as Core Trainers. These young women then passed on the knowledge to other young women. Alumnae support more vulnerable children through school, multiplying the benefits of their education. As role models and mentors they deliver health, wellbeing and financial literacy programmes, share sustainable agricultural practices and business skills, and sit on local and elected committees, changing the prospects for marginalized people in their communities. The trainings included financial literacy, ICT, health, business and entrepreneurship skills. Acquired skills and seed money enabled them to setup rural businesses.

    The consultants travelled to various districts in Malawi including Blantyre Lilongwe, Mangochi and Mchinji to conduct their evaluation. They met with a broad range of in country actors and stakeholders, including the Ministry of Education, community groups, traditional leaders, school based committees and young women involved in the project.

    Following the country visit, the consultants successfully delivered a feedback workshop to CAMFED representatives in Blantyre, presenting the preliminary findings and have delivered a 50 page endline evaluation report.

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  • Final Project Report – ‘Establishing FONERWA, the National Climate Fund of Rwanda’

    11 May 2016
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    FONERWA event

    CIDT is today sharing the final report of a 3-year DFID Fund Management support project to the National Climate Fund of Rwanda, FONERWA.

    FONERWA is a ground-breaking environment and climate change fund supporting green and climate resilient economic development in Rwanda. The Fund provides technical and financial support to public and private projects that align with Rwanda’s commitment to a green economy.

    FONERWA receives project proposals from government, civil society and the private sector, and more than 30 proposals to date have met the high standards required for accessing FONERWA funds. These projects contribute to Rwanda’s green and climate resilient objectives and ultimately to the country’s development.

    As well as contributing to the design and operationalization of the Fund, CIDT  helped to establish the Fund Management Team and after two years, to support the transfer of fund management to the Government of Rwanda Secretariat. The Final project report describes the strategy, activities, results and lessons learned from 3 years of CIDT project management of the Fund Management Team support project.

    As an ambitious but successful programme for mobilizing international climate finance through a national fund, the report provides useful insights into the opportunities, challenges and strategies for implementing such funds in other countries in the future.

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  • 10th Forest Governance Forum takes place in Cameroon

    12 April 2016
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    FGF CameroonFGF Cameroon
    From 16-18 March 2016, the 10th edition of the Forest Governance Forum took place in Yaoundé, Cameroon. Organised by the Centre for International Development and Training – CIDT of the University of Wolverhampton, UK, the forum took place under the centre’s ‘Congo Basin VPA ‘Implementation: Championing Forest People’s Rights and Participation’ project.

    Inspired by the Chatham House Illegal logging meetings, the multi-stakeholder event brought together around 200 participants and regional and global speakers from not only the forestry sector, but also from government, civil society, trade and industry, the NGO community and the academic world to discuss the contemporary trends, debates and issues characterising the FLEGT process. A key purpose of the FGF was to draw out and share key lessons from the VPA process and FLEGT implementing countries and to emphasise FLEGT progress and achievements to date.

    The three day event was broken down into six sessions covering issues of:

    • FLEGT updates
    • Transparency and corruption
    • The role of monitoring in improving forest governance
    • Tackling climate change
    • FLEGT and certification
    • Trade and inclusive engagement.

    The opening ceremony, saw speeches given by Mrs. Koulsoumi Alhadji epsé Boukar, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Forest and Wildlife, the British High Commissioner to Cameroon, H.E. Brian Olley and the Ambassador of the European Union to Cameroon, H.E. Françoise Collet.

    At the opening address, H.E. Brian Olley, British High Commissioner to Cameroon said As we have heard from some of the speakers before me we now recognise that the secret to success in protecting forests is to engage with the ‘spirit’ of the forest and the ‘spirit’ of the people. It is for that I am so pleased to see so many indigenous people from forest communities participating in the conference.”

    A key highlight on the first day was an interactive panel discussion, which saw a highly dynamic and heated discussion on the question ‘where does FLEGT go from here?’ The panel discussion gave the floor to the audience and allowed for some interesting points to be raised. One community leader stressed, how there was much more work to be done at grassroots level to ensure inclusion of forest communities and that FLEGT was still an evolving concept and has a long way to go in tackling illegal timber.”  Others emphasised the need to have more government and private sector involvement.

    A second highlight of the forum was the working group sessions. This formed a critical part of the FGF and focused on six thematic areas: gender, academia, monitoring, proposal writing, tenure rights and benefit sharing. One of the key lessons shared from the gender working group is the need to mainstream and integrate gender into the VPA process and FLEGT policies. The moderator Cecile Ndjbet declared how majority of forestry actors are women yet are ignored or marginalised in the policy frameworks.”

    Find out more

    At the Forest Governance Forum website you can listen to the presentations and download the slideshows, as well as see photos and videos from the event.

    Photos from the event

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  • Developing an integrated global, regional and country Theory of Change and Engagement Strategy (Practical Action)

    23 February 2016
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    Flood Resilience Programme

    CIDT supports Practical Action Flood Resilience Programme to develop an integrated global, regional and country Theory of Change and Engagement Strategy for their Influencing Agenda (Practical Action)

    Between November 2015 and January 2016 Rachel Roland, Deputy Head of CIDT, led an Influencing and Engagement Theory of Change and Engagement Strategy development workshop and follow up process for the Flood Resilience team from Practical Action.

    This consisted of a two day workshop in UK in which staff from the Nepal, Bangladesh, Peru and Global teams participated. The process oriented sessions used results based management methodology to explore key ongoing problems and options. The process started from where the programme currently is, after two years delivery and was very practical – working iteratively to achieve a country-upwards as well as global-downwards perspective in problems and options for effective influencing and engagement. The team developed, discussed and validated nested problem trees and then nested options trees. Causal chains were then constructed that reflected the priority intervention areas. The discussion and validation of these continued until the actions had all been budgeted for.

    A variety of tools were developed for the workshop to show at a glance, the countries’, regions’ and global logic models.

    The participants used the logic models as a way to discuss strategic engagement with relevant stakeholders and an engagement strategy was drawn up for use over by Practical Action over the next two years.

    Images from the workshop

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  • Facilitating Strategic Planning and ‘Effective Representation’ workshops for Civil Society and Community Representatives in Liberia

    22 February 2016
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    Liberia workshops

    CIDT is continuing to provide capacity development support to VPA stakeholders in Liberia, through the DAI-managed VPA Support Unit, funded by DFID and the EU.

    The most recent capacity building inputs, delivered by Sarah Thomas, were the first substantial consultancy support to Civil Society and Communities since the end of the Ebola crisis in Liberia, and were intended to achieve a number of objectives:

    • To review and refresh the 3 year Strategic Plan of the NGO Coalition of Liberia which was developed in May 2014 ;
    • To facilitate development of a 3 year Strategic Plan for the National Union of Community Forestry Development Committees (the national body representing the interests of communities affected by commercial logging concessions in Liberia) ;
    • To deliver training on ‘Effective Representation’ for members of the NGO Coalition and NUCFDC ;

    21 members of the NGO Coalition attended the 3 day workshop in Duazon, during which they reviewed the organisational structure, programme areas, and objectives of the platform. The 5 day NUCFDC workshop, held in Gbarnga, initiated a similar participatory planning process for communities, enabling them to reflect on recent challenges and achievements, review their representative structures and agree on priority objectives for the next 3 years.

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  • CIDT and partners facilitate a regional experience-sharing and capacity development workshop for national civil society platforms working toward improving forest governance and natural resources management in west and central Africa

    21 December 2015
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    Regional exchange visit field trip

    Twenty representatives of five national civil society (CS) platforms from Cameroon, the Central African Republic (CAR), the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Republic of Congo and Ivory Coast came together for one week of experience-sharing, lesson-learning and capacity development earlier this month in Kribi, Cameroon.

    The ultimate aim of this gathering was to improve participation of forest communities, including indigenous people, in the process of negotiating and implementing Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPAs) for the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) programme of the European Union (EU). The civil society organizations’ ability to successfully attain this objective depends largely on the effective functioning of the CS platforms to which they belong. This event therefore provided an important learning and capacity development opportunity for platforms in various countries.

    During a five-day workshop, the participants exchanged experiences and shared lessons about a range of topics, including: how to set up, operate and maintain an effective platform, including resource mobilization strategies, communication strategies, and negotiation approaches; tips for getting a place at the table, making valuable contributions to national dialogue, and successfully influencing policy that affects forest people; and practical strategies for achieving the platform’s vision and objectives related to protection of human rights (especially those of indigenous people and forest communities), promotion of sustainable forest governance, and prevention of illegal logging. The workshop also included awareness-promoting and skills-building sessions on leadership, representation, communications, conflict management, and sustainability of platforms. It was followed by one day of field visits in the Kribi area, where participants observed: the impact of large scale infrastructure projects on forests and in forest communities; independent forest monitoring actions by civil society; and artisanal logging systems and the local domestic market.

    The event was organized by the Centre for International Development and Training (CIDT) and its local partners, FODER (Forêts et Développement Rural) and the Community and Forest Platform of Cameroon, as part of the EU-funded, CIDT- managed Championing Forest People’s Rights and Participation Project (CFPR) in the Congo Basin. The field visits were organized by CEDLA (le Centre pour l’Environnement et le Développement Local Alternatif) and APED (l’Appui à la Protection de l’Environnement et le Développement); and the following collaborators contributed to the workshop sessions: Fern; Well Grounded; and MINADEV Consulting.

    Images from field visit with forest people

    Images from workshop in Kribi

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