AAWAZ Voice and Accountability (V&A) is DFID-funded, five-year long programme, targeted to spread out in approximately 5000 villages and urban communities of 45 districts in Punjab and KP provinces. It aspires to address issues of socio-political and gender marginalization, peace and tolerance and inactive citizen’s demand for social services.
Through AAWAZ Voice & Accountability Programme, SPO together with its consortium partners will strengthen citizens’ voices to help them articulate demand for an equitable, inclusive and a meaningful democracy by pressurizing state machinery to respond. The programme, launched in May 2012, is being implemented by a consortium of 5 leading Pakistani NGOs, well skilled at advocacy and research for governance reforms. Aawaz V&A is built on the considerable body of literature and best practices and has been conceived to carry forward the learning of consortium organizations into a large scale multi stakeholder programme.
The programme seeks to impact on the promotion of a stable, tolerant, inclusive, prosperous and democratic Pakistan. This will be achieved through the following four outputs:
Women’s safe participation in political and public spheres.
Peaceful resolution of disputes working together for common solutions.
Capacity building of citizens for constructively voicing demands for services and holding government accountable for its performance in service delivery.
Improved evidence generated, synthesized, and communicated/championed to political leaders
Aawaz V&A promotes establishing and strengthening of community and civil society based structures at village, union council and district levels with manifest 50% membership of women including representation of minority communities and people with disabilities. AAWAZ programme is uniquely positioned to synergize, complement and build on existing similar initiatives with a view to maximizing overall impact of the programme.
AAWAZ alone cannot achieve the intended outcome unless it works together with a wide range of actors beyond NGOs to social movements, associations, trade unions, political parties, individual and other actors not normally covered by traditional notions of civil society confined to NGOs alone. Being conscious of the changing configuration of civil society, AAWAZ V&A will seek to forge partnership with the new forces to embed the culture of voice and accountability.
As a result of the implementation of this programme, violence against women will become less socially acceptable, the incidence will drop, and women and other excluded groups will be better able to participate safely in politics and in public spaces at local levels, and articulate demands on the issues that affect them. With effective oversight, communities will be better able to resolve disputes peacefully and work together for improved service delivery.