UK's report on Safeguarding, working with Millennials, is the aid system broken, and much more

Posted on 07 August 2018

+ How much do our members love us?
 UK Report: Sexual Exploitation and Abuse in the Aid Sector

The UK House of Commons, International Development Committee, has released a report into "Sexual exploitation and abuse in the aid sector," following issues with sexual exploitation by senior aid staff in Haiti in 2011.

The report is a tough read and concludes that "abuse in the aid sector (internationally) is endemic and that organisations are more concerned with protecting their reputations than with looking after victims."

The House of Commons International Development Committee has called for a register of workers and a specialised ombudsman for the overseas aid sector, after concluding that organisations in this area displayed "complacency verging on complicity" towards the issue of sexual abuse and exploitation.

ACFID's response to the report “Sexual misconduct has absolutely no place in our sector. ACFID and our members are committed to addressing the concerns that have arisen and will work to further ensure accountability; drive prevention, and change behaviour so that we go above and beyond what we already have in place."

CID has also expressed its concerns, and is working with MFAT and our members to develop a Safeguarding workshop that will be held in Wellington and Auckland in September.  More information on this will follow in the next few weeks.

+ "Don’t Touch my School"

Turkey’s recently reelected president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has made expansion of Muslim schools a top priority. Erdogan’s government is reported to have approved a religious education budget of US$1.5 billion this year, an increase of 68 per cent.

Religious schools (madrasas) are a common feature of Muslim life.  Madrasas focus on teaching the Qur’an, the recorded sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, sacred law and other Islamic subjects.  

Since Erdogan came to power, the number of these schools has grown from 450 to 4,500.  They now require students to study the concept of holy war, to learn that Muslims should not marry atheists, and to believe that wives should obey husbands. These schools also emphasize rote learning over critical thinking.

Education has become a central issue as parents around the country are protesting his changes and scrambling to find schools of their choice as standards slide and unemployment swells.

+ A broken aid system?

An open letter was written by fifteen development experts and economists in which they push back against the dominance in foreign aid of micro-level projects and short-term thinking over macro-level planning that tackles the root causes of underdevelopment. 

"Aid projects might yield satisfying micro-results, but they generally do little to change the systems that produce the problems in the first place. What we need instead is to tackle the real root causes of poverty, inequality, and climate change.”

"The existing aid structure may be broken. There are times when aid is detrimental. Donor fragmentation impedes effectiveness and creates reporting burdens for recipient governments. Aid allocation based on donor interest may leave some states behind. Fragile states have tremendous needs but present significant challenges for aid delivery.

This is a challenging read. We all need to move beyond a mindset that treats short-term and long-term goals as substitutes rather than complements.

+  Tonkin & Taylor win award for work with INGOs 

CID was very proud to cheer for John Leeves and his team at Tonkin & Taylor on Friday, at the ACENZ awards (Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand).  Tonkin & Taylor got an award for their pro-bono work with our members (and the World Food Programme) during the devastating Cyclone Winston in 2016.

It was great to see them get the recognition they deserve from their own sector. Many of our members continue to work with T&T, as does CID. They have been a key part of rolling out the online pre-deployment mapping system (thanks Bruno!) with the World Food Programme.  CID and T&T are working together to set up a CID Business Network to improve our understanding of what works when partnering with the private sector  - and their understanding of us.

A lot of this comes down to individuals being prepared to build the relationships and spend the time getting to know our sector. So a big shout-out to John Leeves and everything he is doing to support CID and our members and their partners!
+ How to get the best out of millennials

And how they can make your organisation better.

There is a lot of talk of what young people bring to the aid and humanitarian sector.  "Millennials"  - the generation born between 1979 and 1990, "has the potential and desire to create a new model for social change—and on a scale, unlike anything we’ve seen in modern times," says a four-year study from the Stanford Social Innovation Review.

If you want to know "how the Millennial generation connects, gets involved with, and gives to social causes" have a look.

This study "forms the basis of the Millennial Impact Project. The purpose of this ongoing effort is to provide much-needed information to organizations and causes that are trying to engage this often-misunderstood group of next-gen donors, volunteers, and employees."

Key points:
1. Millennial preferences are now the norm for all donors
2. Invest time and resources in helping Millennials feel and experience the cause.
3. Inspire them to work through and with their cause, rather than for their organization
4. Millennials are your secret weapon when it comes to spreading the word about a cause or issue

And another piece of research from Business Connect with 6 key points:

1. Millennials are always digitally connected
2. They're always sharing information with others
3. They care about results more than institutions 
4. They like stories
5. They monitor social media for causes
6. They value transparency.

For a more local take, Te Whare Hukuhuku is dedicated to "empowering Maori youth with the skills and confidence to step up into governance and leadership roles across the motu and within Maori community."

And an excellent ODI piece on how to engage young people in-country  - a few years old now but worth a look - look at young people and governance.
+ How the P20 are doing in your country

The Development Initiatives is an independent international development organisation that focuses on the role of data in driving poverty eradication and sustainable development.  They have released an interactive pdf to see profiles on how the poorest 20% of people (P20) are doing in every country across the world based on available data.

The P20 Initiative produces data to show whether the poorest 20% (the P20) of people are getting their fair share of attention, investment and opportunity, and therefore whether people are being left behind.

They have also released a report on which countries are being left behind.  Using a range of models and measures for evaluating poverty, human development and fragility, they are trying to assess the commonality between the countries most at risk in all three fields.

+ Breaking the silence: promoting action on aid worker mental health

Ahead of World Humanitarian Day, the Overseas Development Institutes (ODI) is having a panel discussion on how to break the silence and promote action on mental health and stress for aid workers.

For more information and to register, click here.
+ Are 'Women's Empowerment' Programs really empowering women?

So many aid programs in low-income countries have set "empowering women" as their goal. They don't just want to boost women's incomes and health and education level, but to give them the ability to make their own decisions over those aspects of their lives.

But how do you actually gauge how much control a woman has over her life?

There is a growing effort to actually measure women's empowerment but there are many challenges, one being getting program participants to give an honest account of their views and experiences on a topic where traditional societal expectations can be so strong. "People tell you what they think you want to hear,"

"Programs like this are potentially very valuable, but it is vital that rigorous research is done to make sure they are accomplishing their goal."

+ The Global Compact for Migration

The Global Compact for Migration is now final, but the real work is beginning. “As countries prepare to adopt the Global Compact for Migration in December, discussions will revolve around how to operationalize and implement the commitments agreed to in this document”.

“The road ahead will be difficult and many of the challenges and points of contention that arose during the Compact’s negotiations will not disappear with its adoption.  Countries will need to tackle these challenges head-on as they work toward pragmatic, evidence-based, and coordinated migration policies and practices that fulfil the objectives and commitments of the Compact." 

Rachel O'Connor from the New Zealand Red Cross spoke to us about the Global Compacts on Refugees, you can find notes on this talk, her presentation slides and a video of the talk here.

+ Shift from a "transactional relationship to a collaborative one"

Belinda Gorman from Partnership Brokers Association gave a fantastic CID talk in both Wellington and Auckland, on how to get your partnerships with other NGOs, government, or business to work well.

No partnerships are the same. But most share a desire to shift from a "transactional relationship to a collaborative one". Belinda highlighted some of the key elements to successful partnerships:
• Common purpose
• Share risks and benefits
• Build relationships - people make partnerships, not organisations!
• Make sure the relationships are layered throughout your organisation
• Mutual accountability
• Have courage
• Be prepared to try new things - innovate!
• Start small. Agree to do an activity together and see how that goes.

For more info and the videos of the talk, click here
+ Are todays NGOs destined to become tomorrows social enterprises?

A piece from CID's Director on the relationship between international NGOs and social enterprise and what we can learn from each other. 
+ Member of the Moment: Cambodia Charitable Trust

“In a small Southeast Asian nation, nine young women with previously grim prospects have started tertiary education in the past 12 months because of Denise Arnold. Next year, another 50 or 60 will enrol.”

Denise Arnold founded the Cambodia Charitable Trust in 2008 to target sex trafficking in the region by enhancing access to education – for girls especially. The CCT works using a localised approach in partnership with longstanding Cambodian networks to improve and equalise education in the region. CCT’s impact includes providing teaching resources, building safe and dignified toilet blocks, constructing playgrounds, and connecting running water to keep young brains hydrated and active. CCT also collaborate with the local education ministry to train teachers, and Denise makes it a priority to include health programmes in schools and is always working to find sponsors to help keep students clothed and in class.

More recently, the Cambodia Charitable Trust have showcased some serious innovation in their involvement with Bestow Sisterhood, a New Zealand company specialising in natural health and beauty. Bestow sponsors 6 girls through the CCT, and donate to the trust all profits from sales of their ‘Generositea’, a delicious organic blend lemongrass, peppermint, hibiscus, cinnamon and cardamom.

Read more about the Cambodia Charitable Trust and our other fantastic Members of the Moment here


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