Enabling Resilience through Peace Building and Economic Development
Status: Completed Start Date: Jan 2012 End Date: Aug 2013 Geographic Coverage: Sindh (Pakistan) and Afghanistan Focus Area: Peace Building and Economic Development SDG Goal: 5-‐Gender Equality; Goal 16-‐ Promote, Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Society Implementing Partner: SPO and Afghan Women’s Educational Centre (AWEC) Funding Partner: Catholic International Development Charity -‐ CAFOD
Strengthening Participatory Organization in unique partnership with its funding donor Catholic International Development Charity -CAFOD implemented the project titled ‘Enabling Resilience Through Peacebuilding and Economic Development’ in Pakistan. Same project was implemented in its neighboring country Afghanistan. This was unique partnership which open doors of learning for SPO and also bridged a strong link between SPO’s mission and sustainable development goal 16 of building peaceful and inclusive society.
Resilience refers to the degree to which a household re-establishes its livelihood and patterns of access to resources after experiencing a shock or hazard. A resilient livelihood would be one that provides for household needs despite the occurrence of a shock of hazard. However, an increase in a household’s level of resilience does not only mean reducing risk to disasters through infrastructural improvements. Increasing resilience within populations that are marginalized or discriminated against requires addressing underlying inequalities and affecting change in unjust social relations and structures of domination that cause differential access to and control over resources.
In this initiative, increasing household resilience involved rebalancing these social inequalities, including those that underpin the occurrence of violence against women in Afghan and Pakistani households. In the case of Pakistan this work to increase resilience is crucially important for flood affected households who want to ensure their livelihoods are better able to recover after any future shocks.
This initiative aimed to enable women and men in Afghanistan (Herat and Ghor provinces) and Pakistan (Sindh province) to achieve more resilient livelihoods in a more peaceful environment. This pilot initiative benefitted a total of 2,881 men and women (with at least 50 per cent being women).
SPO with the support of its network of CSOs and local communities ensures to work with both men and women to create a more peaceful environment within target households and villages. It also worked with men and women in target villages to increase the resilience of their livelihoods through economic development so that they are less vulnerable to shocks and hazards.
The project also incorporated the use of technology and social media into peer review processes in order to improve their ability to measure change in resilience and peace-building programs.
This initiative was based on a theory of change whereby men and women will change their attitudes and behavior when they are rewarded by the results of their new behavior and when they witness others being rewarded for their new behavior. The rewards in this case were asset-based: financial (livelihood grants and subsequent increase in monthly income) and social (improved relations within households and eventually within villages). This is partly why the project involves more than awareness raising about women’s rights—SPO understands that men and women need more of an incentive to change their behavior, that learning about the rights women are entitled to be not sufficient to bring about this change.
Also, women’s economic activity within households increased when they received livelihood grants. This increased their bargaining power within the family and also increased the level of control women have over the household income.
In this initiative, direct beneficiaries encompassed participants and their immediate families, which is an average of 7.35 people per family in both Pakistan and Afghanistan. Total 38 Enterprise Groups and 18 Resilience Groups were formed, with 5-7 members in each. After the business plans approved by SPO, Enterprise Group members received livelihood grant and then collectively invested 5 per cent of profits into a village-level fund for the implementation of DRR activities that benefitted the wider village.
The project reached out to overall direct beneficiary total of 2,881, out of which 50per cent were women.
At the end of the funding period;
50 per cent of women in target villages report that men in their families and wider community demonstrate greater respect towards them.
30 per cent of women in target households who were experiencing domestic violence prior to this initiative report a reduction in prevalence of domestic violence by the end of the project
30 per cent of women in target households who were experiencing domestic violence prior to this initiative report a reduction in the frequency of domestic violence by the end of the project
By the end of the project, 30 per cent of women Enterprise Groups members in both countries report increased control over the income they earn.
By the end of month 12, all Resilience and Enterprise groups in each target village were collaborating on activities that aim to reduce disaster risk for the wider village.