Sudan Post-Conflict States
In 2007, we partnered with a Community Driven Development program – Community Development Fund (CDF) – to introduce the Rapid Results Approach in thirteen post-conflict communities in North Kordofan, South Kordofan, and Kassala. CDF was financed by a trust fund set up by the donor community to support the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement between North and South Sudan.
Similar to the Community-Based Rural Development Program in Ghana, the challenge in CDF was to build ownership of the program at the community level, and to shift the focus of the program from infrastructure (building schools and health centers) to impact (improving key health and education indicators).
Some of the results achieved by the initial wave of 100-day projects included:
- In Um Sura (North Kordofan), the community Rapid Results team’s goal was to reduce dropout rates by 50%, from 22 dropouts the previous year to 11. Not only did they exceed their goal, but 16 of the students who had dropped out last year returned to school!
- In Silkyay (Kassala), the team set a goal to increase enrollment from 60 students to 120, but in fact exceeded their goal by reaching an enrollment of 128. The team also built two classes, an office and a school latrine.
- In Diman (Kassala), team efforts decreased Malaria prevalence among children and pregnant women from 50% to 16% (according to blood tests conducted by the Malaria control unit). The team also built a health staff house near the community clinic.
- In Khor el Deleib (South Kordofan), the community Rapid Results team sought to increase primary school enrollment from 50 to 75, but they exceeded their goal and reached 87 enrolled students. In addition, the Khor el Deleib team built a new school – an accomplishment that required them to mediate a long-running dispute between two local tribes (11 local tribes were represented on the Rapid Results team).
For more information on these initial RRIs, click here to read additional reflections from a field trip to some of the communities.
The Institute continued to support the CDF leadership team as it expanded the use of the Rapid Results Approach to other localities and to the Blue Nile State. Several rounds of Rapid Results Initiatives were launched in each targeted locality. Rapid Results coaching support was provided by CDF social mobilizers who were trained and accompanied by Institute consultants.
In 2009, the Institute collaborated with CDF to introduce a leadership development program for Commissioners and Executive Directors of the targeted localities. The program challenged these Commissioners to set longer term goals and then to mobilize Rapid Results teams to pursue these goals in 100-day increments. This was modeled after programs developed by the Rapid Results Institute Chairman, Douglas Smith, in partnership with Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and Columbia’s Sulzberger of Journalism.
Leaders going through the program tackled more systemic challenges. For example, the Wad Banda Commissioner took on the challenge of reducing medical care costs by localizing health care. Over the nine months that followed, the coalition that the Commissioner built pursued a number of goals aimed at addressing this. In February 2010, the first complex child delivery operation was conducted in the Wad Banda hospital built as part of this effort. The local hospital enabled Wad Banda residents to avoid travelling long distances and staying at boarding houses in order to receive basic medical care.
The Commissioner of Hamesh Koreib decided to tackle the issue of female education in his ultra-conservative locality where educating girls was considered taboo. As part of this effort, the Commissioner built an all-girls school and secured furniture, teachers, and even a female bus driver. He was also able to register 130 girls in the school. Unfortunately, the school opening has been delayed from one season to the next, while the Commissioner continues trying to overcome the resistance to change from other traditional leaders in his locality.
As of September 2012, Commissioner Ahmad Bitay was still fighting, and still hopeful. Inspired by his persistence and passion, Commissioners in neighboring localities started girl schools of their own, and they have been able to break the prevalent taboo against girl education.
In 2011, CDF was named by the World Bank as the top performing community-driven development project in its African portfolio.
Our work in Sudan was sponsored by the World Bank. For more information contact, Endashaw Tadesse at Etadesse@worldbank.org
References & Further Reading
Update From the Field, by Nadim Matta, Jun 2007
Education of Girls in Sinkat Kinap is Not an Illusion, by Noureldien Ahmed Abdelrahman, Dec 2007