Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

Meaningful Societies
Improving vulnerable women and girls’ access to multi-sectoral development in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

The United Nations
“Women in Sudan can face significant economic and political exclusion. Ensuring vulnerable women and girls access to opportunities to realize their full human potential is a long-term effort. And it can only be achieved by involving and supporting local actors and organizations that are already playing an active role in the development of their communities and Sudan.”
– Sofia Terragni, Senior Associate at Voluntas
Meaningful Societies
Providing Insights on Women-Centered Programming

Since 2018, Search for Common Ground (Search) in Sudan has implemented the three-year Maa Baaad Namo/We Grow Together project in collaboration with five local partner organizations. The project focused on increasing the capacity, networks, and opportunities of Sudanese civil society organizations to improve vulnerable women and girls’ access to multi-sectoral development. Project activities took place in five states in Sudan: West Kordofan, South Kordofan, Blue Nile, Gedaref, and Kassala.

Voluntas carried out the final evaluation of the project through an in-depth review of programmatic documentation, a listenership survey in selected target locations,  by interviewing partner and local civil society organizations, staff, government, and media representatives, involved in the project as well as discussing with local communities.

 

Fact-based recommendations and action points to strengthen female multi-sectoral development in Sudan

Based on the findings of the final evaluation, Voluntas advised Search on lessons learned and fact-based recommendations to further enhance programming activities focused on supporting women and girls’ access to multi-sectoral development opportunities in the country.

SFCG

Search for Common Ground’s (Search) mission is to transform the way individuals, organizations and governments deal with conflict, away from adversarial approaches and towards collaborative solutions. 

Read more on Search’s website and access the project report and summary

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Meaningful Societies

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

Sudan
Meaningful Societies

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC). Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Sudan

Supporting Libya’s young leaders of tomorrow

Supporting Libya’s young leaders of tomorrow

Supporting Libya’s young leaders of tomorrow

Meaningful Societies

Understanding the challenges in enabling effective and impactful implementation of youth focused programs in Libya – Highlighting “Skills for Tomorrow”: Equipping the youth to be future leaders of Libya.

Libya faces numerous barriers to sustainable livelihoods, exacerbated by the political unrest the country has been facing since 2011. Among these barriers is high unemployment, particularly among youth. Within this context, Amideast launched the “Skills for Tomorrow” (SFT) program aimed at increasing employability skills and equipping Libyan youth with the skills they need for success while encouraging them to be leaders in their communities. The program is designed to provide training for 105 Libyan students in disadvantaged neighborhoods in seven locations across the country.

The United Nations
“Obtaining a quality education underpins a range of fundamental development drivers. Major progress has been made towards increasing access to education at all levels, particularly for women and girls. Basic literacy skills across the world have improved tremendously, yet bolder efforts are needed to achieve universal education goals for all.”
– The United Nations
Meaningful Societies
Voluntas is supporting Amideast in monitoring, evaluation, and learning for the SFT program.

The support includes conducting baseline, mid-term and end-line assessments to develop actionable recommendations for program implementation and evaluate the program’s impact. The baseline study was conducted in August 2020, providing insights on how participating Libyan youth view leadership and their educational and career aspirations. In January 2022, Voluntas conducted the midterm study providing additional insights to the baseline and a deeper understanding of the perceptions and challenges of participating Libyan youth.

 

Sharing a bigger purpose

Amideast and Voluntas share a common purpose: to provide Libyan youth with opportunities to realize their human potential and become the future leaders of their country.

Voluntas supported Amideast by conducting a baseline and midterm study of the “Skills for Tomorrow” program, enabling a better understanding of the challenges and lessons learned voiced by the students. The reports also allowed unlocking a deeper knowledge of the program’s participants perceptions of leadership, and their aspirations for the future.

Amideast is a leading American nonprofit organization engaged in international education, training, and development activities in the MENA region.

 

amideast logo

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Meaningful Societies

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

Sudan
Meaningful Societies

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC). Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Sudan

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Meaningful Societies

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC), an organization which has been a leader in meeting the demand for better statistical data to serve public and private decision-making in Sudan since 2009. SPSC’s depth of experience implementing social sciences research will be crucial to supporting Voluntas’s growing portfolio of projects in the country. In partnering with local institutions, we aim to not only harness contextual knowledge, but also work with our partners to strengthen local capacities.

Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Interview with Manahil Elsafi (SPSC)

Manahil is a team supervisor at SPSC, overseeing large-scale data collection in the field. Manahil is Voluntas’s point-of-contact at SPSC and we therefore work closely with her to ensure the timely delivery of high-quality data. We spoke with her about her experience working on data collection in Sudan and the daily work in the field. Manahil joined SPSC as a researcher while studying at Al Jazira University, thanks to a partnership that SPSC had developed with the university. Given the importance of data collection to research studies and evaluations, Manahil spoke about the importance of planning, especially when working in conflict zones, as well as issues related to collecting and uploading data from the field:

“challenges differ according to the project, but we try our best to manage the different situations and find solutions accordingly”. Manahil aims for her work to have a positive impact on her community and country. Her dream project is one that helps people: “we want to make a positive impact on people’s lives. It is a responsibility talking to different people from different backgrounds on various topics; from economy to political and social affairs, the ultimate message is to be able to help people around us, shed light on the different issues that they face, and give them a chance to voice out their concerns and ideas for solutions”.

In addition to its role and capacities in data collection in Sudan, SPSC also provides employment opportunities, especially for youth and women.  

 

New projects in Sudan
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

In January, Voluntas started its first project in Sudan, working with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to conduct a basic needs and vulnerability assessment of migrants, refugees, and host communities (BaNVA). The BaNVA is the most comprehensive assessment of its kind in Sudan, seeking to understand the individual, household, communal, and institutional needs and vulnerabilities of target groups across the whole of Sudan. The assessment has consisted of face-to-face interviews with more than 5,000 refugees and 1,400 Sudanese citizens across 13 states, and 20 key informant interviews. The BaNVA has captured wellbeing indicators across several key thematic areas including food security, WASH, protection, and education, and has been designed to explore the feasibility and suitability of multipurpose cash modalities to address unmet needs of the target population.

Overall, this assessment is innovative in a few different ways: it spans a multi-sector framework of needs and vulnerabilities; it has been developed in close collaboration with other key actors to maximize its impact and usability across organizations; and it targets previously understudied groups even within the refugee framework, including out-of-camp and urban refugees, and host communities.

 

Click to download the full report for free
Working with the World Bank

In addition to assessing humanitarian needs, Voluntas has been conducting studies related to Sudan’s political and economic transition. Alongside the World Bank, we recently completed a study on Sudan’s economic reforms, which aimed to understand the perceptions of Sudan’s economic performance and how the reform agenda may best be communicated. Data collection included a 1000 face-to-face computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI) survey, 45 KIIs, and five FGDs. This project was recently finalized with a presentation for the Government of Sudan.

 

United States Institute of Peace

For the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), we have been conducting a study on the public perceptions of Sudan’s political transition. This has involved a nationwide survey of 1800 individuals, 10 KIIs, and 6 FGDs.  

 

The World Food Programme

Building on the experience of our third-party monitoring projects in Libya, Voluntas is now working with the World Food Programme (WFP) in Sudan to monitor its activities across the country. This will include 450 site visits at WFP’s 5,000 operational sites across the country.

VNG International

Finally, Voluntas is currently working on a political economy analysis of the local governance sector in Darfur for VNG International, the International Cooperation Agency of the Association of Netherlands Municipalities (VNG), which involves 24 KIIs across West and South Darfur. The study is focusing on local governance structures in Darfur in relation to reconciliations, grassroots peace processes, and recovery and development.

 

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Meaningful Societies

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

Sudan
Meaningful Societies

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC). Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Sudan

Involvement in The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme

Involvement in The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme

Involvement in The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme

Meaningful Societies
COVID-19 | The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme

October 30, 2020

The Northern Periphery and Arctic Programme (NPA) forms a cooperation between nine partner countries including Finland, Ireland, Northern Ireland, UK, Sweden, Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland and Norway.  The NPA is a part of the European Territorial Cooperation Objective, also known as Interreg and is supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). Despite geographical differences, the regional partners share common features such as low population density, low accessibility, low economic diversity, abundant natural resources, and high impact of climate change. This unique combination of features yields joint challenges and opportunities that can best be overcome and realized through transnational cooperation.[1]

As COVID-19 spread throughout Europe in spring 2020, the NPA monitoring committee agreed to support seven projects dedicated to what has become known as the “NPA COVID-19 Response Call”. Each of these projects address one of five themes aimed at understanding the impact of COVID-19 across the NPA region: (A) Clinical aspects, (B) Health and wellbeing, (C) Technology solution, (D) Citizen engagement/community response and (E) Economic impact and (F) Emerging themes.[2]

In collaboration with Baltic Sea Cluster Development Centre, Voluntās Policy Advisory (Voluntās) is currently involved in the “COVID19-Communities Response and Resilience” project targeting themes “Citizen engagement/community response” as well as “The Economic of Health Service Delivery”.

For the Communities Response and Resilience project, Voluntās are working closely with partners from the Regional Council of Kainuu, Finland; University of Oulu, Finland; Rural Area Partnership, Northern Ireland; NHS Western Isles, Scotland; Leitrim County Council, Ireland and British Red Cross, Shetland to examine the impact, resilience, and responses to COVID-19 on a community level in the NPA area.[3]  Collaborating with the Faroese Agricultural Agency has been focused on distributing three different questionnaires across the Faroe Islands. Having now completed the data collection phase, Voluntās will compile a regional report which will ultimately feed into the transnational report comparing findings across six regions.

The “COVID & Economics” project examines economic impacts and responses to COVID-19. It captures innovations and transformations that have taken place as a result of the pandemic, and sets out to create a roadmap for recommendations that will allow for more sustainable and resilient regional/local communities and economies across the NPA. In this project, Voluntās is working with partners from Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands and northern Norway in order to gain insight into the effects on COVID-19 on these economies.

 

 

[1] http://www.interreg-npa.eu/about/programme-in-brief/

[2] http://www.interreg-npa.eu/for-applicants/covid-19-call/

[3] http://www.interreg-npa.eu/covid-19/npa-response-group-and-projects

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Meaningful Societies

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

Sudan
Meaningful Societies

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC). Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Sudan

Supporting UNICEF on the COVID-19 pandemic in Libya

Supporting UNICEF on the COVID-19 pandemic in Libya

Supporting UNICEF on the COVID-19 pandemic in Libya

Meaningful Societies
Case | COVID-19 | Libya

To support effective COVID-19 crisis communication and community outreach by the Libyan Ministry of Health and the National Centre for Disease Control, Voluntās Policy Advisory supported UNICEF in the development and implementation of a nationwide survey-based behavioral assessment in Libya. The assessment aimed at capturing a broad and in-depth understanding of the realities of the COVID-19 pandemic in Libya, including the impact of the pandemic on basic service delivery as well as health-seeking behaviors, mental health, dietary habits and social/economic situation of Libyans and migrants alike.

The assessment aimed at gaining an understanding of the knowledge, attitudes, and practices as to transmission, prevention and treatment of the virus as well as of risks, available services in targeted municipalities, and preferred sources of information on COVID-19. As such, the assessment will allow UNICEF, the Libyan National Centre Disease Control, and the Ministry of Health along with other UN agencies and partners to provide an informed response to COVID-19 as part of risk communication and community engagement efforts.

As part of the assessment, Voluntās supported UNICEF in the development and implementation of a nationwide telephone survey in Libya with regional representativity. The analysis highlighted differences between Libyan nationals and non-Libyans (migrant population) to identify unique challenges for vulnerable groups. In addition to the final report, an online dashboard was created with the possibility of disaggregating data by region, gender and status of respondents. The findings presented to UNICEF will feed into UNICEF’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Libya. A final report as well as a dashboard were shared with UNICEF, the National Centre for Disease Control and the Libyan Ministry of health, to support effective COVID-19 response efforts.

Related Insights

Meaningful Societies

Realizing women and girls’ human potential in Sudan

With Sudan still ranking as the 138th state out of 162 countries in the Gender Inequality Index, millions of women face economic and political exclusion. These challenges are especially exacerbated amongst refugee women. As such, changing perceptions and attitudes, and ensuring vulnerable women and girls have access to opportunities is a long-term effort, which can only be achieved by involving local stakeholders and civil society organizations currently playing an active role in the development of their communities and their country.

Sudan
Meaningful Societies

Voluntās expands into Sudan

Voluntas is expanding geographically. Earlier this year, we established a partnership with Sudan Polling and Statistics Center (SPSC). Dana Fuentes, a senior associate with Voluntas who until recently was based in Tunis, relocated to Sudan last month to support our expanding presence in the country. Dana will be supported by Nada Elamin. We will be opening an office in Khartoum in the coming months.

Sudan