• Needs assessment to lead to targeted project management training for Nigerian power sector

    13 February 2019
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    Electricity pylon

    CIDT’s Rachel Roland, Ella Haruna and Richard Nyirenda are currently providing valuable technical assistance to an important and exciting project that is providing support to the Nigerian power sector.

    It is well known that despite being a middle income country with significant natural resources, Nigeria has amongst the worst infrastructure in Africa, and the country’s poor power supply regularly tops surveys on constraints to investment and economic development.

    Providing a training needs assessment (TNA)

    CIDT is providing technical assistance services to the Nigeria Power Support Programme through a consortium led by Coffey – a Tetra Tech Company and McKinsey & Company. CIDT’s role is to provide technical support for a comprehensive project management training needs assessment of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN). In this role CIDT is working closely with leading Nigeria consultancy firm Philips Consulting Limited (PCL).

    In November and December 2018, CIDT experts undertook visits to Abuja and Lagos during which they worked with PCL and TCN to support the design of the TNA and analysis of needs assessment data and the development of a training plan for TCN. This task aims to support the company in improving its project management skills in the context of large internal and externally funded projects.

    Needs assessment informs training

    Drawing on the training needs identified by the PCL team a training programme comprising face-to-face project management training courses, train the trainer course and on the job training and coaching will be rolled out by PCL across all the 9 TCN regional offices. CIDT will lead on the delivery of a bespoke 1 week course on ‘Funded Project Management and Training of Trainers’. This CIDT component will be targeted at ‘programme management champions’ within TCN, who will be at the forefront of catalysing and rolling out good project management practice with TCN. It is anticipated that the training programme will in the long term enable the company to effectively implement its projects ensuring that more and more Nigerians have access to the national electricity grid.

    CIDT is very proud to be involved in this work, which will contribute to increasing access to electricity for Nigerian citizens.

    Richard Nyirenda

    The Coffey support project is funded through DFID’s wider programme – the Nigeria Infrastructure Advisory Facility (NIAF). The project is acting as a bridge between the second and third phase of the NIAF. The aim of the project is to provide technical support to the Nigerian power sector and is helping the government of Nigeria to implement effectively its reform to the power sector through its Power Sector Recovery Programme including strengthening internal processes within the Rural Electrification Agency of Nigeria to deliver on its mandate to increase access to modern energy.

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  • Hurricane-stricken Dominica and BVI receive Project Management training from CDB and CIDT

    12 February 2019
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    A year ago Caribbean islands including Dominica and the British Virgin Islands were badly hit by hurricane Maria – a devastating Grade 5 hurricane. In the words of Dominica’s Prime Minister Mr Roosevelt Skerrit:

    “It has been brutal… we have never seen such destruction. Homes have been flattened, schools destroyed, telecommunications have been cut off and the island’s main hospital is still without electricity.”

    For the past year people across the Caribbean islands affected by Hurricanes Maria and Irma have been rebuilding their lives and properties, demonstrating huge resilience.

    To assist the recovery the Caribbean Development Bank Project Cycle Management (PCM) Capacity Strengthening programme has rolled out training to many senior government staff in Project Management delivered by the CIDT training team.

    Over an intensive five week teaching period, Philip Dearden (Head of CIDT) and CIDT Associates, Joy Mapp-Jobity and Sergei Prozarau led delivery of Project Management modules in Dominica. In the BVI training was led by Des Mahony and associates Yolanda Alleyne and Mark Lee. Modules include:

    1. Principles, Tools and Skills for Project Cycle Management 
    2. Project Appraisal
    3. Project Planning and Implementation
    4. Monitoring and Evaluation
    5. Risk Management
    6. Managing Technical Assistant Projects 
    7. Procurement
    8. Train the Trainer

    In Dominica participants focused on design of two large development programmes – one on improving traffic flow in the ever increasingly congested towns of the island and the second on the possible establishment of a much needed national Technical Education Institution. Both project design teams were highly motivated and keen to learn and came up with good project proposals. Feedback on the delivery of all the modules has been very positive. Comments from the independent evaluation exercise being undertaken have included:

    “Both the module and the facilitators approach were effective.”

    “It was a wonderful experience. The small group ensured that people were open and honest in the interactions without fear of repercussions.”

    The training was well received.”

    “The Programme was an eye opener. “

    “This enables us to be part of an integrated system which will be necessary and help us move forward with CDB.”

    Staff working on the design of Projects in the Principles, Tools and Skills for Project Management module.

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  • International development experts scoop award

    1 February 2019
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    CIDT's Sarah Thomas with colleagues in Liberia

    International development experts at the University of Wolverhampton have received an award for their work supporting forest governance improvements in Liberia.

    The Centre for International Development and Training (CIDT) was awarded the Forest Governance Award by the NGO Coalition of Liberia.

    The award recognises the work of CIDT to “support, strengthen and advocate on Forest, Environment and Land right issues in the Republic of Liberia and Africa”.

    This involves strengthening governance and institutional reform within the forestry sector in order to amplify the voice of forest-dependent communities and protect endangered environments.

    Sarah Thomas, Senior Consultant for CIDT, said:

    “It really is a huge honour and we are absolutely delighted to have received this award. CIDT staff have been working in the forest sector in Liberia in various capacities for nearly a decade now and we are also privileged to have hosted a great number of Liberian students on our ‘Improving Forest Governance’ course (2010-2016).

    “We are extremely proud to have forged such a strong and constructive partnership with the NGO Coalition of Liberia through this work and to have contributed, in some small way, to the development of this important institution and, through them, to the promotion of improved forest governance in Liberia.”

    CIDT’s work in Liberia formed part of an EU/DFID funded project to reduce illegal logging and promote more transparent and inclusive governance of the forest sector. As part of the project CIDT has been providing institutional development support to Civil Society and community organisations, strengthening both their oversight function and their contribution to the multi-stakeholder decision-making process in Liberia.

    This article first published at: https://www.wlv.ac.uk/staff/news/january-2019/international-development-experts-scoop-award.php.

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  • The University of Wolverhampton working ‘glocally’ for the Sustainable Development Goals

    17 December 2018
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    SDG icons with University logo

    The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are slowly becoming part and parcel of what we do. This is how the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI) describes the SDGs:

    “with these new Goals that universally apply to all, countries will mobilize efforts to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind.”

    Each Goal identifies a series of short or long-term targets to be achieved and further guidance on how to meet them, thereby providing additional support for making the sustainable transformation we need. The 17 SDGs of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development were actually adopted in September 2015 and came into force on 1 January 2016.

    The UNAI then adds:

    “The new Goals are unique in that they call for action by all countries, poor, rich and middle-income to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. They recognize that ending poverty must go hand-in-hand with strategies that build economic growth and addresses a range of social needs including education, health, social protection, and job opportunities, while tackling climate change and environmental protection.”

    Two years ago the role of businesses in delivering the SDGs was presented at the University of Wolverhampton 2016 Crystal Lecture. Since then the ‘glocal’ work of the University of Wolverhampton, including several large projects, has been mapped against the SDGs and presented to several large audiences.

    Recently, Wolverhampton City Council has taken a lead and is now reporting on their Sustainability Strategy and Implementation Plan against the SDGs.

    Earlier this year the first report on UK progress against the SDGs compiled by the UK Stakeholders for Sustainable Development (UKSSD), ‘Measuring up’ was presented in Parliament. 

    Alignment between the SDGs and the University of Wolverhampton Strategy

    There is considerable alignment between the SDGs and our University Mission and Values:

    Our mission is Maximising opportunity through generating knowledge, innovation and enterprise.

    Our core values are that:

    • We will behave respectfully and ethically, in all that we do.
    • We will be inclusive and fair in our interaction with each other and with our wider community.
    • We will act professionally, transparently, confidently, collaboratively and challengingly when engaging with our communities both locally and globally.

    These all align well with the SDGs.

    The Times Higher Education is currently developing a new global university ranking that aims to measure institutions’ success in delivering the SDGs. Wherever possible we as a University need to be referencing the SDGs in delivering our strategy and in our actions.

    Let’s take a quick look at some of the things we are actually doing, both globally and locally, (i.e. ‘glocally’) towards achieving the SDGs.

    Current university initiatives supporting the Sustainable Development Goals

    Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere

    Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture

    Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

    Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning

    Goal 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

    Goal 6: Ensure access to water and sanitation for all

    CIDT’s work in fragile and conflict affected Somaliland to bring Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) service delivery to populations that have lost water through conflicts and/or who are vulnerable to drought. CIDT will support project teams so that WASH projects are inclusive for women, youth and disabled and other vulnerable groups and are designed and carried out with conflict sensitive methodologies.

    Goal 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

    Goal 8: Promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, employment and decent work for all

    Goal 9: Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialisation and foster innovation

    Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries

    • University of Wolverhampton Strategic Plan.
    • CIDT’s global work on Social Inclusion.
    • ICRD’s work with the City of Wolverhampton Council, to support the wellbeing of Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children.
    • Women Rough Sleepers work to support homelessness.

    Goal 11: Make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

    Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

    Goal 13: Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

    Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources

    Goal 15: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

    Goal 16: Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies

    Goal 17: Revitalise the global partnership for sustainable development

    Looking ahead we want to monitor and showcase the work and impact of our university for the SDGs ‘glocally’. I suspect there are many things missing here. If you know of other University initiatives that fit the SDGs please contact Philip Dearden ( P.N.Dearden@wlv.ac.uk).

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  • Training on strategic planning in Addis Ababa contributes to long-term goals of African Union Commission

    13 December 2018
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    AU Addis Ababa workshop

    AU Addis Ababa workshopCIDT strategic planning and programme design experts Richard Nyirenda and Sarah Thomas delivered a 5 day Strategic Planning Training workshop for the African Union Commission (AUC) in Addis Ababa from 3-7 December 2018, continuing a series of training delivered by CIDT in 2018 for the AUC.

    The training workshop was built around CIDT’s flagship Strategic Planning Thinking Tools – 7 Simple Steps. It was attended by participants from the AUC Headquarters in Addis Ababa, including the African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child; Women and Gender Development; Strategic Planning; Administration and Human Resources Management. Some of the participants also came from the AUC Offices across Africa, including the African Union Mission to Somalia, the Office of the AU Representative in Washington DC and the African Academy of Languages in Mali.

    AU Addis Ababa workshopThe workshop was designed to support the AUC in embedding a Results-Based Management approach in implementing its strategic vision: Agenda 2063. Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next 50 years. It builds on, and seeks to accelerate the implementation of past and existing continental initiatives for growth and sustainable development. CIDT is proud to be playing a small but significant part and contributing towards the AUC’s strategic vision for the transformation of Africa.

    The workshop in Addis Ababa is part of a series of training events that CIDT has delivered for the AU this year, including tailored training workshops on Women in Leadership and Training of Trainers.

    Feedback from the end-of-programme evaluation was very positive and indicated that participants had acquired a wide range of skills and tools from the highly interactive and dynamic programme and appreciated the programme delivery and design.

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  • CIDT’s achievements in forest governance presented at forest partnership meeting

    7 December 2018
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    Aurelian Mbzibain presents at CBFP

    CIDT’s Dr Aurelian Mbzibain and Daniela Baur attended the 18th Meeting of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership Parties on 27-28 November 2018 in Brussels, Belgium.

    As a core leader of Forest governance in the Congo Basin region, Dr Aurelian Mbzibain, on behalf of CIDT, with World Resources Institute summarised key themes and initiatives that have taken place over the last year, and outlined priorities for the future.

    Discussions and actions throughout the past year are organised into three priority areas recommended by participants at the previous meeting of the Parties in Douala:

    • Integrated land management
    • Timber markets and legality
    • Participatory forestry.

    Aurelian Mbzibain presents at CBFPDiscussion on these priority themes continued throughout the year in a series of meetings including the Forest Legality Week in Washington DC, and the Forest Governance Forum in Brazzaville in October, among others. Key recommendations included calls:

    • To implement the Brazzaville road map on participatory forestry;
    • For cross sectoral coordination in land use planning and the use of earth observation tools for decision making
    • For improving transparency and voice and strengthening forest legality and law enforcement
    • For Congo Basin governments and development partners to integrate timber legality in public procurement contracts and as a way of gradual regulation of domestic timber markets.

    View the communiqué (in French) presented to the CBFP Parties.

    CBFP organising parties reported that ‘the Brussels meeting comes at a time when the Congo Basin forests are facing increasingly complex and serious challenges: The region is also making a major “shift” in its economic model which is currently geared towards diversification driven by investments in territorial development related sectors such as mining, the food and agricultural industry, infrastructure and other large scale projects, bolstered by a strong drive for medium term emergence which was virtually absent at the time of the launch of the CBFP. There is an urgent need to establish better linkages between sustainable forest management strategies, conservation approaches and the region’s economic development objectives which in turn requires better opportunities for dialogue and commitment around relevant issues, including cross-cutting issues and follow-up of shared viewpoints.’

    The meeting convenes Heads of States, ministers and senior multilateral officials from around the world. It also attracts participants from international organisations, multilateral partners, civil society organisations and indigenous peoples, youth, women, media, academia, scientific community, private sector actors.

    With participants close to 400, discussions were held on a variety of topics relating to conservation of biodiversity, wildlife, climate change adaption, sustainable management of the Congo Basin forests as well as local development of the communities residing in the Congo Basin.

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  • CIDT support regional workshop for the International Labour Organisation in Moscow

    6 December 2018
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    ILO workshop Moscow

    Philip Dearden (Head of CIDT) and Katerina Stolyarenko (Associate consultant), supported this two day Results-Based Management (RBM) and Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Workshop held in Moscow, Russia 27 – 28 November. In attendance were forty five ILO staff from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Russia and ILO Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland attended.

    The learning objectives of the event were to provide a “refresher” on key concepts of RBM and M&E and practice their practical application ready for current or future interventions of the ILO office in the sub-region.

    Specific topics covering in the workshop were:

    • The rationale for results measurement and the “results chain”
    • Seven simple planning steps and seven key questions to ask
    • Logical Frameworks and Theories of Change
    • Key concepts of results measurement and its application to key areas of intervention of ILO in the sub-region
    • Monitoring, Reviews and Evaluations
    • Practical Monitoring, Review and Evaluation tools

    Six case studies of typical regional challenges where ILO projects/programmes would be applicable, were used as a learning tool to develop and apply RBM and M&E concepts in a practical and experiential manner.

    Feedback from the end-of-programme evaluation was very positive and indicated that participants had gained a lot of learning from the highly interactive and dynamic programme and appreciated the programme delivery and design

    Many participants commented on how much they had enjoyed the workshop and on the practical value to their work. Comments received included:

    • Excellent facilitation
    • Practical and interactive
    • Inspiring facilitator – Clarity of delivery
    • Great energy
    • Very professional delivery of the topic
    • Interactive way of training: sense of humour, group work, informal communication
    • The energy of the trainer/facilitator and the relevance of the training to all ILO staff
    • Well guided workshop, good case studies
    • Lively and fun workshop
    • A lot of interaction, not pure presentation
    • Group work discussions
    • Working on real concrete issue
    • Depth of information, practical examples, space for dialog, team work, presentations
    • The facilitator’s academic and interactive approach
    • Systematic, well-structured discussion of a rigorous framework activities etc.

    Many participants expressed their thanks for the well planned and well delivered programme and have requested more such training for themselves and colleagues.

    Photos from the workshop

    Below: The programme being opened by Olga Koulaeva, DWT/CO Director of the ILO Office Moscow and the workshop methodology being explained by the facilitator.


    Below: Workshop participants working on their projects and programmes  

    Below: Workshop participants making presentations

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  • Multi stakeholder and sector exchange on Forest Governance in the Congo Basin

    28 November 2018
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    Forest Governance Forum Brazzaville

    The Regional Forum on Forest Governance (FGF) was held from 30-31 October 2018 in Ledger Hotel in Brazzaville, under the patronage of the Prime Minister, Head of Government of the Republic of Congo. This event is the first of its kind for the CV4C project, but the 11th in a series of similar international conferences organised within the framework of the Centre for International Development and Training (CIDT)’s previous projects: Strengthening African Forest Governance (SAFG) and EU-Championing Forest Peoples’ Rights (CFPR) project.

    The Forum received financial support from the CV4C project, co-funded by the European Union and the UK Department for International Development.

    The Forum was attended by over 250 participants from civil society organisations, international organisations, donors, representatives from research institutions and private sector organisations were present. Participants hailed from the Congo Basin countries (Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, and Republic of Congo) as well as Belgium, Chad, France, Ghana, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Nigeria, Poland, Switzerland, UK and USA.

    Her Excellency Mrs. Rosalie Matondo, Minister of Forest Economy of the Republic of Congo was present during the opening and closing ceremony.

    The Forum took form in 12 panel sessions covering the topics and themes:

    • An Overview of the State of Forest Governance in the Region and beyond – COMIFAC
    • VPA and TLAS Implementation
    • Promoting Transparency and Public Procurement Policies
    • Panel on Regional Legal Frameworks and Reform Processes
    • Private Sector Engagement & Land-use
    • Involving indigenous peoples and local communities in forest governance
    • Forest Certification and forest governance links
    • Fire Management Planning, Sustainable Forest Management, Climate Change Response
    • The scope for building synergies between IFM and IWT
    • The Accountability Framework initiative (AFi)
    • Climate Change, Finance and REDD+
    • Benefit Sharing, Gender and Funding

    Over the two day forum, 49 presentations were made by 39 stakeholders*, many of which operate across the Congo Basin region and their respective countries (Cameroon, Central African republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Republic of Congo), but also stakeholders operating beyond the region, notably from Ivory Coast, Indonesia, UK and USA.

    View the agenda for the event to see all presentations that were made. The FGF pages host copies of the presentations made and more photos of the event.

    * ACFAP, ATIBT, Brainforest, CCJ, CDHD, CEB/Precious Woods, CED, CIB/OLAM, CIDT, CIFOR, CLFT, Client Earth, CNIAF, Comifac, Communication Officer Platform for Sustainable Forest Management, Conservation Justice, FAO, Fern, FFAD, FLAG, FODER, FSC, Interholco, JPIK Indonesia, MEF Indonesia, MEF RoC, MINFOF Cameroon, Ministry of Water and Forests Republic of Ivory Coast, P4F, PALF, PPECF, Proforest, Rainforest Alliance, SAILD, US Forest Services, World Bank, WRI, WWF, ZSL

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  • Chinese Delegation visits the University to learn about Public Sector Human Resource Management

    23 November 2018
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    Chinese delegation visits University

    A delegation of 12 senior Human Resources staff from a variety of Public Sector institutions in China visited the University to learn more about Public Sector Human Resource Management. Facilitated by Rachel Roland in CIDT the group had presentations from a range of University Human Resources staff on topics ranging from Organisational Development through to Gender Pay Gaps and how issues related to this are being tackled.

    The visit timetable covered a range of topical university HR subjects:

    • Welcome to the University – Prof Philip N. Dearden
    • Gender Pay Gap and Progression Conferment – Faye Crosbee
    • Athena Swan and Research Excellence Framework – Aisla Nicholls
    • Service Now –  John Dicken
    • A Day in the life of a Human Resources Business Partner – Reg Probert
    • Wolverhampton Academic – Helen Gillott
    • Organisational Development – Aisla Nicholls
    • Questions and Discussions.

    The visit was led by Lu Shihai, Director General of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security. Jessie Shi was the Project Manager for UEC Cross Culture Links who organised the UK visit for the delegation.

    During their visit to the UK the group were also visiting a wide range of public sector organisations including research organisations, libraries, the National Health Service (NHS) and other Higher Education institutes.

    Below: Helen Gillott talking to the group about the HR processes involved with the “Wolverhampton Academic”.

    Below: Philip Dearden and Aisla Nicholls kindly being presented with gifts from Lu Shihai, Director General of the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security on behalf of the Chinese delegation.

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  • Project Cycle Management Training delivered across five countries in the Caribbean

    14 November 2018
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    A CIDT training team has delivered two further cycles of training under the Caribbean Development Bank’s Project Cycle Management training programme. Training took place in Belize, St Kitts and Nevis and St Lucia in May 2018 and in Montserrat and St Vincent’s and the Grenadines in July 2018.

    The training team included CIDT’s Ella Haruna, Des Mahony, Sarah Thomas and Phil Dearden, and CIDT associates Patt Flett, Susan Branker Greene, Alexa Khan, Nana Hesse Bayne, Teddy Charles, and Mark Lee.

    Since November 2017 the CIDT team has delivered this suite of eight modules in Barbados, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The training modules cover a wide range of tools and themes around the project cycle, including project design, management, monitoring and evaluation to more specific PCM approaches, such as project appraisal, managing technical assistance projects and procurement. Each module is contextualised with regional case studies and the training has been very well received across the region – with an average of 97% positive participant feedback in the recent quarter.

    • “Excellent Delivery! Thank You!” (M5 St Kitts and Nevis)
    •  “The practice activities were very practical and allowed for much discussion.” (M9, Belize)
    • “It was well prepared and presented I do not think it could have been better.” (M4, Montserrat)
    • It was well executed” (M5. St Vincent and the Grenadines)
    • “It is an excellent opportunity for refresher training and continuous personal development. It also provides the foundation for improved project management and implementation.” (M5, Belize)
    • “Was extremely well delivered an indeed an eye opener.” (M9, St Kitts and Nevis)
    • “This was a good introduction. It is a lot to take in as a novice but the trainers were able to deliver the content and oversee activities well.’ (M3, St Lucia)
    • “Although I may have covered aspects of Monitoring and Evaluation previously, the facilitator was able to bring across concepts clearly which allowed for better understanding. Group exercises and examples enhanced learning.” (M6, St Vincent and the Grenadines)

    In addition to face to face training participants are also supported with a follow-up webinar, six weeks post-training. The webinar serves as a refresher and checks in on progress towards implementation of participant action plans.

    CIDT’s Phil Dearden has also delivered a suite of PCM Masterclasses for CDB staff at Headquarters in Barbados.

    The final training cycle is now well underway with CIDT trainers deployed in Anguilla, Haiti, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Jamaica and the British Virgin Islands.

    Read more on this project

    CIDT have provided services to the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) since 2013 – find out more about CIDT’s work with CDB in the following news articles:

    Photos from the training


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