Posted February 1999
Afghanistan | Bolivia, Burundi, Nepal, Pakistan, Tunisia | Costa Rica | Gambia | Honduras | Indonesia | Nepal | Namibia | Niger (1) | Niger (2) | Pakistan | Sikkim (India)
This development project focuses on participatory village development and institution building for local government and non-governmental organizations. The project provides extensive in-service training for government officers, extension agents, NGO field workers, and villagers in fisheries, food crops, food processing, livestock, marketing and cooperative development. It assists NGOs in establishing four sea transportation services for isolated villages and two road transport links to district markets.
Utilizaton of participatory Planning at the village level. This result was achieved through the training of 25 government extension agents in Participatory Rapid Appraisal techniques. The participatory aspect of these planning exercises provided a forum for the women to express their desires and needs. This resulted in village plans that demonstrated a more appropriate gender balance than would have been the case had the planning been undertaken solely by the traditional male hierarchy.
Village programmes involving women received very strong support from district and village level authorities. The potential for this support was created by Gender Sensitivity Training Workshops through which a total of 54 persons received training. These individuals were from various levels of local government, aid agencies, NGOs, Cooperative Management Units and groups with government connections.
Women undertook sustainable productive activities, with the involvement of local community groups, leading to the improvement of living standards. This result can be measured by the creation of 469 saving accounts in the project villages, where none existed prior to the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action project. Of these 469 accounts, 48% were held by women, 27% by children and 25% by men. The saving accounts of the children result from the fact that the children tend to work with the women, consequently, they received earnings for their efforts.
Both men and women from previously market-isolated rural communities obtained capital resources, inputs and improved their skills to increase agricultural, livestock, and marine production and to produce high-quality processed food stuffs. Men and women, on both individual and group basis, developed marketing skills such as the ability to anticipate marketing costs and to understand price fluctuations. Marketing groups functioned successfully in at least half the villages in which the project operated. Marketing cooperatives were established in a few villages and operated successfully. As a result of increased and more efficient production and marketing, both men and women in target village households had increased their incomes from agriculture, fisheries, and cottage industries (micro-enterprise). Household saving accounts were established, and villagers, individually and collectively, invested in productivity-enhancing technologies.
UNDP was involved as the primary funding agency. GOI was involved through the provision of funding and in-kind contribution and having overall responsibility for the project. The Provincial Government of Irian Jaya was involved in the allocation of funds and as the provincial supervising authority. The District Government and aid agencies were directly involved as project counterparts. FAO was involved as a Cooperating Agency providing backstopping.