Helvetas Blog

Sarah Byrne, February 2016 3

Engaging religious authorities as advocates: experiences from Afghanistan

“Religious leaders have a say in almost all aspects of life” – my colleague Khalid’s assessment of the influence of religious leaders’ moral authority in rural Afghanistan is comprehensive. In many of the contexts in which we work, religious leaders have remained somewhat outside of the “comfort zone” of development organisations (particularly non-denominational ones). The

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Jane Carter, February 2016 0

Girls’ initiation rites in Mozambique: opposing views

This week I have been reading through documents from an EU-funded project supporting women’s empowerment in Northern Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province – an area that I visited back in May 2014. The project, Ocupali, is at the end of its three year phase, so it is time to draw out lessons learned. The most obvious

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Riff Fullan, February 2016 0

Is context really everything?

What do horse racing on a frozen lake and a knowledge management workshop have in common? At first glance, not a lot. But over the past few days I was a curious observer of one and a facilitator of the other, and they both sparked similar thoughts as I was remembering the experiences. The winter

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Jane Carter, January 2016 2

Testing our assumptions in Kyrgyzstan

January is a good month for lunchtime talks… Yesterday we had Lucie Kufova, Masters student at Fribourg University, presenting her research into gender aspects in water governance in Kyrgyzstan. Lucie was hosted by our SEP project over five weeks last summer through our Junior Research Fund. This small fund allows a few students per year

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Jane Carter, December 2015 0

Fair labour, fair trade

“It’s just a little further” insisted Ganga Saud (not for the first time), as the vehicle lurched over a series of particularly large potholes along an ever-upward winding road. My colleague Rukmini Adhikari and I looked at each other in mutual trepidation – not over the road itself, but the fact that we were travelling

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Jane Carter, December 2015 0

Women in community forestry in Bhutan

This past fortnight has been a “trip down memory lane” for me, returning to visit community forest management groups (CFMG) in Eastern Bhutan that were established in the early 2000s. Back then, I visited these groups quite regularly as part of a project supporting a range of forestry development activities – including community forestry. Now,

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