…because in South Sudan, small holder agriculturalproduction is the base for a sustainable development.
VSF Germany supports pastoralists and agropastoralists in the East of Africa…… implementing projects in Kenya,Ethiopia, Somalia, South-Sudan andNorth-Sudan. VSF G works in South Sudan since 1998; since 2005 South Sudan is organised in „Bundesstaaten“ = States, sub-dividd in Counties.
But taking care of the animals is not enough toensure food security and development of ruralcommunities, for example inGogrial East CountyWarrap State / South SudanRecovery and Rehabilitation Project 09Gogrial East (RRP), May 2006 – May 2010an integral rural development project implemented by VSF Germany
RRP Gogrial EastA gate toself-determined development … 4 lessons learned after 4 years of project implementation
RRP after the civil war– rehabilitation and first steps towards the integrated development of a rural county RRP = Recovery and Rehabilitation ProjectGlobal aim: Contribution to poverty reduction and improvement of food security of the ruralpopulationthrough:improvement of animal health and livestock production; increase, improvement anddiversification of agricultural production;improvement of Basic and Reproductive Health Services with focus on women and children;improvement of access to safe water;improvement of access to education and training;based on close collaboration with the Local Government in supporting them to take up hteirresponsibilitiesPartners collaborating in RRP therefore are:- Local Government Authorities and Administration of Gogrial East - Citizens of Gogrial East- VSF Germany as Lead Agent- International NGOs: CESVI, IoH, WVI, VSF Germany- South Sudanese NGOs: INFRAID and SEDA,
Lesson No 1: Close collaboration with LGA and communities as a baseWith RRP, citizens of Gogrial East met to discuss issues concerning the improvement of their lives,like here in the Participatory Review and Planning Workshop in September 2008
Women are involved and take their stand: not only at community meetings, butalso when traders of the market towns came together to form their association.…
…as well as the youth of both sexes… as here in a meeting for youth groups inthe county capital Lietnhom
RRP moved ahead in supporting the setting up of countystructures:Equipping of operational base in Luonyaker and finalisingthe Local Government Authorities office in Lietnhom, thecounty headquarters. When in Luonyaker, the County Officers used to hold meetings in this tukul. Now they use the rooms of the new operational base whenever they come from Lietnhom to Luonyaker.Citizens come with their requests and areattended; meetings and workshops arehold here. Giir Thiik Giir, the paramount chief, arriving to discuss with the Executive Director
The Participatory Review and Planning Workshop, opened by His Excellency, theCommissioner of Gogrial East, could be held at the office premises in Luonyaker andturned out to be a big success. For three days, more then 120 people participated daily.
Capacity Building of LGA staff First steps into a new technology and …To introduce the staff to the moderncommunication technology, RRP 09organized a 2 months comprehensivecomputer training course for 40 LGAstaff; representatives of local NGOwere also invited. The IT-trainer explained basic computer operations to the trainees, and they practised for the first time in their live. proud trainees and a happy trainer after a successful training
The County Planning Unit could putinto practice new skills learned incomputer training when working onthe county development plan and the2008/2009 budget.
County DevelopmentPlan:Helping to come up with a 3years’ integrated countydevelopment plan including abudget was one of the majorefforts RRP took to support theLocal Government during thethird year. The consultant who came in to help the development of the draft plan, used the chance also to do capacity building for Local Government Administrators in The field of monitoring and evaluation.
The consultant discussed with representatives of all county departments and also gathered all the information the planning unit could get during their payam consultations, before he compiled a draft of the County Strategic Plan.This draft then was presentedand thoroughly discussed in a3 days’ meeting for LGArepresentatives held in thecounty headquarters.
The meeting was held at the premises of the newly established Village Bank inthe county headquarter Lietnhom
The County Authorities support the office construction in Lietnhom, the countyheadquarters, and help to motivate community contributions for the construction of healthcentres and schools. They organised the community in laying and burning bricks and alsohelped to provide timber, sand and gravel … Lesson No 2: LGA and community contribution
Construction in the Health Sector moved on successfully: The Primary Health Care Unit in Luonyaker has been inaugurated, as well as the Primary Health Care Centre in Matiel. 5 further PHCCs will be finished soon.The former Primary HealthCentre in Yikador as anexample for how healthfacilities looked like all overthe county: an old Tukul,nearly falling apart ….… and the newly constructedPrimary Health Centre inMatiel awaiting the openingceremony – thanks to the workdone by many hands.
Community members were the ones to provide bricks for all health facilities constructed by RRPIt is mostly women involved in brick laying.
The women involved in brick layingdanced and rejoiced together with theTraditional Birth Attendants trainedby the RRP Health Sector during theopening ceremony of the Matiel HealthCentre. The young people of Matiel – the youths, and students down to Primary one came to join the Celebrations and were welcomed by their mothers.
The traditional chiefs - hereChief Morris Ngor Ater and Sub-Chief Ngor Mawien - thankedRRP for the support received inconstructing the Matiel HealthCentre… …as well as the representative of the County Health Department Theresa Akul Arol and the women involved in brick laying.
RRP work is appreciatedby the traditionalauthorities:For the inaugurationceremony of the LuonyakerHealth Care Unit and theHealth Centre in Matiel,the chiefs of the areaprovided the bullsslaughtered by the spearmasters
The communities and the county ofGogrial East contributed local materialsincluding bricks and timber for theconstruction of public buildings likethe Health Centres and Primary Schools … and for all schools and offices under construction Yikador Health Centre
The County Authorities organised to get licences for cutting timbers in thecounty forests for the roofing of the office and other buildings like healthcentres and schools constructed under the RRP-programmeThe Executive Chief selected thetrees and the youth of the nearbyvillages helped the timber cutterswhen necessary…
At the inauguration of the Matiel Health Centre, the Consortium ProgrammeCoordinator used the chance to thank LGA and the community of Gogrial Eastfor their contributions towards the construction of public buildings. “With one hand alone you cannot clap” LGA and Community Contribution RRP construction – materials & labour budgeted: 1,89.000 SDG = 584,000 Euro LGA and community contribution till the end of year three: Timber 100,500 SDG = 34,000 Euro Bricks, sand, gravel 884,000 SDG = 272,000 Euro Total 994,500 SDG = 306,500 Euro = Contribution of 1/3
Lesson No 3: Combined Mobile Clinic for Human and Animal Health advisableTo improve the health servicesoffered to the citizens of GogrialEast, the RRP Health Sector startedthe Mobile Clinic Services: Once aweek a team went out to visit thoseparts of the county far away fromhealth centres and difficult to access.
The mobile clinic team offered primary healthcare services in general and also attends topregnant women and children When arrival of the team is announced at the village centre or at the cattle camp … mothers come immediately to seek help for their sick children – as farmers come to ask support for their sick animals.
But after the civil war, violent conflicts among the local communities are endangering the peaceful development of the rural areas in South Sudan. Therefore: Lesson No 4: Peace and reconciliation measures are needed as a pre- condition for all activities realised by NGOs.VSF G supported efforts in Gogrial East that aimedat ending the numerous clashes between the Dinka-clans of the Apuk, Aguok and Kuac.
As a result, VSF Germany introduced a peace and conflict resolution component as a cross-cutting theme into the RRP-project- As asked by the Commissioner of Gogrial East, VSF G organised a small conference at county to level in preparation for the big peace conference at state level to be held in Tonj.- A VSF G team supported the delegation made up of county-representatives, traditional rulers, traditional healers, women‘s and youths‘ representatives at the first Peace Conference of Warrap Stae 2008; VSF G also helped to disseminate the conditions laid down in the peace agreement signed there all over the county.- VSF G supported women‘s representatives and women‘s organisation from the hostile clans in forming the umbrella „Akac akac“ (=„Enouhg is enough“), who wanted to bring an end to the violent clashes among the youth.- In December 2010, during the 2nd State peace meeting, VSF G supported the local government and CoTAL in organising a peace meeting between Apuc, Aguok and Kuac, where youth from the different cattle camps for the first time could meet each other and exchange their views.- VSF G opted for traditional conflict resolution and accepted the sentnece of the traditional court when directly involved: When one of the RRP-drivers was involved in an accident.
In preparation for the big peace conference: Chiefs, other traditional leaders, women and youth representatives discussed about their grievances, but also about those of the other side, and tried to find root causes for the conflict and proposals for a way forward. Chiefs spoke about their worries and …... women expressed their grievances. As were the traditional spear masters, VSF G was also there to see to delegation off to attend the Peace Meeting in Tonj.
Signing of the Peace Agreement between the clans of Apuk, Aguok and Kuac in Tonj:Chief Giir Thiik Giir was the first to sign… … and both the commissioners of Gogrial West and East sealed the peace agreement by jumping hands together over the bull, which had been sacrificed for the big event.
Presentation of the Kal Kuel peace covenant all over the countyMama Ayen Parek, widow of William …and the chiefs of GogrialDeng Nhial, gave her blessings as she did West and East joint hands inin Tonj in the presence of the president … celebration.
The Governor led a delegation of the Warrap State Traditional Authority Leaders visiting different places in the Greater Gogrial to disseminate the message of the Kal Kuel peace covenant, and held also a meeting in Luonyaker. VSF G helped to organise the events in Gogrial East.The women handed over white ribbons to all thechiefs and authorities present– since white is thecolour of peace.They also presented a rope to the governor - as asymbol for the bull , which would be scacrificedlater to seal the peace treaty.
Young men and women from thedifferent cattle camps greeted thethe honorable guests with a whiteflag, and offered, as a gesture ofpeace, calabashes of sour milk tothem.
At the end of the ceremony everybody joined in a dance of joy:Chiefs, elders, celebrities, handicapped,female members of the parliament,children…
VSF Germany accepted the verdict of the traditional council …… and paid the traditional fine of cattle.One bull was sacrificed for the ceremonyof reconciliation:Representatives of both parties licked thebile of the animal and spit: From then onall bitterness should be forgotten.