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Promoting Holistic Self-Reliance for Refugees, other Forcibly Displaced and Stateless People, and Host Communities

Geeska Afrika Social Development Organization

Promoting Holistic Self-Reliance for Refugees, other Forcibly Displaced and Stateless People, and Host Communities


In alignment with Objective 2 of the Global Compact for Refugees, this pledge is committed to two primary aims:

  1. To evidence, advocate for and expand holistic programming that enhances self-reliance for refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people, and host communities and better prepares them for progress towards durable solutions; and

  2. To promote and accelerate the instrumental role of local actors in realizing progress towards self-reliance outcomes for refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people, and host communities.

We encourage the advocacy for and implementation of area-based approaches, emphasizing partnership with local actors and within local systems. These strategies are guided by our understanding of self-reliance as ‘the social and economic ability of an individual, a household, or a community to meet its needs in a sustainable manner.’ The aim is to decrease displacement-specific barriers, needs, vulnerabilities, risks, and dependencies on humanitarian aid for greater sustainability, while also taking steps to address the legal needs of individuals as part of a comprehensive approach to self-reliance.

By signing this pledge, all signatories commit to, Participation and Accountability: We commit to the strategic and meaningful engagement of local actors, including local authorities, civil society organizations, private sector entities, and the target populations themselves.

Holistic Programming: We commit to adopt an increasingly holistic approach in all new programmes that have self-reliance outcomes as the goal, incorporating layered interventions that go beyond livelihoods and recognizing the multi-dimensional nature of self-reliance. This may include addressing the material, physical, social, and legal needs of displaced individuals.

Exit Strategy and Sustainable Interventions: We commit to utilizing systems-based approaches aimed at decreasing dependencies on humanitarian aid and promoting the sustainability of interventions. Programming will be time-limited with a clear exit strategy.

Evidence Generation: We commit to fostering a culture of evidence-based decision-making by prioritizing the collection, analysis and use of high-quality evidence to inform decisions. This includes sharing lessons learned, best practices, and relevant data with stakeholders to enhance the impact of interventions and to scale effective approaches. It also includes contributing to the body of evidence through the measurement and analysis of self-reliance programming outcomes (using the Self-Reliance Index and/or other tools).

Measurable Outcomes: To ensure the effectiveness and accountability of our pledge, we have identified two pillars of commitment. Signing actors are committing to at least one of the pillars. The Geeska Afrika Social Development organization commits to supporting both pillars, pillar1: [Holistic, Self-Reliance Programming Reach].

Holistic, Self-Reliance Programming Reach: Understanding Holistic Programming: In the context of this pledge, ‘holistic’ encapsulates an integrated approach that aims to address the multi-faceted needs of refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people, and host communities. To achieve the intended outcomes, holistic self-reliance programming provides more than livelihoods support, and considers other domains as captured for example in the Self-Reliance Index (SRI) (e.g. housing, food, health, education, psychosocial support, physical safety, social capital, etc.).

Holistic programming fosters collaboration across various sectors and engages a diverse range of stakeholders, all while incorporating the insights and contributions of local actors and systems.

Indicator: The number of clients reached through self-reliance programmes that incorporate at least two distinct sectors, such as health and education or legal aid and livelihoods. Use of the Self-Reliance Index to measure the indicator is encouraged but not compulsory. 

Evidence Gathering and Knowledge Sharing – Scope: This pillar focuses on the generation and use of evidence for adaptive programme design and management, advocacy purposes and policy reform.

Types of Activities: This can encompass a range of knowledge gathering and sharing activities such as research studies, impact assessments, training, informational events for knowledge exchange, community of practice meetings, resource libraries, dashboards, etc. Indicator: Number of research or data collection projects or initiatives linked to evidence gathering, advocacy or dissemination of best practices for self-reliance programming.

Target for Signatories: Each signatory aims to produce at least one knowledge-sharing activity as outlined above. This pledge will support the agency of those we seek to assist while improving the relevance, quality, transparency and accountability of that assistance. We furthermore commit to sharing lessons and best practices from the implementation of this pledge at subsequent Global Refugee Forums and/or high-level officials’ meetings.

The Geeska Afrika Social Development organization pledges to uphold and execute the commitments outlined in the NGO shared pledge above. To further elaborate, the specific activities of The Geeska Afrika Social Development organization in fulfilment of this pledge between 2024-2027 will include: 5,000 households reached through self-reliance programming-At least 1 evidence gathering and knowledge sharing activities each year from 2024 to 2027.

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