Emerging from more than 22 years of civil war, South Sudan is beginning the challenging process of rebuilding following the loss of an estimated 2 million lives, the displacement of over 4 million inhabitants and an almost total collapse of infrastructure. Large numbers of internally displaced people and refugees have returned to South Sudan and straining the already overstretched basic services and minimal level of infrastructure. In response, Global Communities has been working with communities since 2004 to implement projects in the areas of livelihoods, capacity-building, infrastructure development, water and sanitation improvement, civic awareness and participation and prevention and response to gender-based violence.
Global Communities is helping indivduals and communities to rebuild their lives with the Improving Market Potential for Returnees through Opportunities for Viable Economic development (IMPROVE) program. After decades of conflict, refugees are streaming home to South Sudan, and IMPROVE is focused on facilitating the reintegration of these new citizens into societal fabric and creating sustainable sources of income through which they can rebuild their own lives and contribute to the development of their new country. Funded by USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance, IMPROVE is strengthening food security and supporting livelihoods through vocational training, agricultural production and market-oriented micro-entrepreneurship.
In areas, which continues to receive high numbers of returnees, conflicts between the returnees and host communities, inter ethnic conflicts over natural resources continue along with sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). Through multiple programs, Global Communities is working local partners, schools, service providers and the police to promote gender equity and reduce the high levels of SGBV. The Partnership Against Violence and Exploitation (PAVE) is being implemented in Juba County, in partnership with the South Sudan Women’s Network. Funded by the US Department of State’s Bureau for Women, Peace and Security, PAVE is working with community members, the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare, and local and international NGOs in the area. PAVE is expected to reach more than 50,000 individuals in Juba County through its activities. Through Gender Equality through Understanding – Prevention Against GBV (GET UP), Global Communities is working with schools to raise awareness about gender equality and equal access to education for girls. The program also is providing clinical training to service providers such as nurses and health care workers to respond to cases of GBV as well as training for police officers in case handling methodology for GBV cases.The Youth Action Against Violence and Exploitation in South Sudan (YAAVE) project is working in conjunction with PAVE to mobilizing and empowering youth against GBV in Juba County.
Women’s Empowerment to Abate Violence and Exploitation (WEAVE): Funded by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau for Population, Refugees and Migration, WEAVE focused on combating gender-based violence by reducing its acceptance and increasing government and community support for at-risk women. The program engaged both men and women in prevention, awareness raising, and dialogue; provided at-risk women with employment opportunities; improved health and sanitation practices; and enabled local leaders to identify and address GBV.