Knowledge Matters – DRC WASH Consortium
This issue of Knowledge Matters captures the experiences and learning from the WASH Consortium, lead by Concern in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
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Concern has developed a tailored version of the Graduation Model, first developed by BRAC in Bangladesh, and subsequently piloted across eight countries, supported by CGAP (the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor) and the Ford Foundation. We are currently implementing this programme in Burundi, Rwanda, and Zambia and from 2017 in Ethiopia and other countries.
Concern has a partnership with the Institute of Development Studies who have undertaken quantitative and qualitative research to explore the sustainability of livelihood improvements over time, the success and cost of the Concern approach and the quality of the targeting.
As an organisation Concern Worldwide is focused on tackling extreme poverty - understood as a lack of basic assets and/or the low return to these assets - and the key dimensions that cause or maintain this, specifically inequality, risk and vulnerability. Our graduation programmes are designed not only to move an individual or households above a specific income threshold but rather to bring about improved returns on new and existing assets. The term ‘graduation’ is used to refer to the movement of individuals or households out of extreme poverty and into food security and sustainable livelihoods, and is captured by the following theory of change:
By accurately targeting extremely poor households and delivering a comprehensive package of support including income and assets, facilitating access to savings and credit systems and delivering skills training and mentoring, beneficiaries will have diversified livelihood options and increased resilience to shocks and stresses.
Extensive research findings are now available from the research carried out between 2012 and 2015 for Burundi and Rwanda offering valuable insights into the Graduation Model.