3 min read
International Solidarity Foundation (ISF) has invested in developing a training manual for women in rural and urban Somaliland to ensure that they are equipped with the right information on female genital mutilation, gender-based violence and livelihood planning.
Creating a better world for girls and women free from any form of violence is and has been our drive as an organization. We strive for a better world by ensuring our programs meet the needs of the community through the right content and medium of delivery. In line with our mission, ISF has invested heavily in developing a training manual for women in rural and urban Somaliland to ensure that they are equipped with the right information on female genital mutilation (FGM), gender-based violence (GBV) and livelihood planning.
ISF women’s business, health & safety manual has been designed to offer a participatory framework for integrating their livelihood and GBV particularly FGM projects. The manual geared to help ISF partners plan for their project implementation training/facilitation towards positive behavior change among the community member on FGM, GBV, and livelihood. The manual also includes micro-business training sessions to make sure that every woman is empowered on all aspects of their business skills enhancement.
The manual comes at a very crucial point in our project implementation and is based on field learning experiences of 50 years as an organization and informed by our implementing partners (Field gender officers) in Somaliland. ISF partners have implemented projects and are in touch with the community on the ground. The bottom-up approach used in developing the manual has ensured that the manual is easy to understand for the beneficiaries, detailed and structured lessons for the facilitator ensure an effective and fruitful impact.
The ISF women’s business, health & safety manual is different from other development partners’ training manuals in Somaliland and the larger horn of Africa. The manual incorporates the different aspects of our projects in the harmful practices (FGM & GBV) and Livelihood ensuring that our beneficiaries are given comprehensive information through targeted training based on their needs.
Development of the ISF women’s business, health & safety manual met a few challenges just like any other project. Key among them were, this was the first time ISF was developing a training manual for itself and its partners and it was time-consuming as it was running concurrently with the existing projects. The concept was new, and the team had to take time to research extensively on how to write the manual, make it comprehensive, and easy to understand for the beneficiaries and facilitator.
The manual will become a benchmark for many other organizations in the region and beyond in project training manual development on harmful practices against women and girls, adult learning, and basic business skills. The manual will also be an important part of ISF and its partners in Somaliland to add to their projects for the benefit of the community as we continue striving for a better world for women and girls.
“For this article, ISF Regional Communications Coordinator interviewed ISF Somaliland field staff, Zeinab Mohamoud – Women’s health & Business Training Officer and Rahma Aidid – Monitoring Coordinator for input.”