When you think of a successful community project, what are the key elements that come to mind?
To answer the question we thought it would be relevant to highlight a project that in our minds is a success. This is the Community-Based Adaptation (CBA) project “Glengoffe climate change adaptation” in the community of Glengoffe, Jamaica. Glengoffe consists of fourteen small communities with an approximate population of 5000.
Since the diversion of the rivers feeding it approximately 50 years ago, the Aral Sea has been steadily decreasing in size. Formerly one of the world’s four largest lakes, today, the Aral Sea is less than one tenth of its original size and continues to shrink. As the water level recedes, the land it leaves behind is heavily polluted, often with residue from chemicals that were expelled during weapons testing as well as industrial by-products. Two of the outcomes of the Aral Sea disaster are the increase in disease, notably tuberculosis (TB); and a lowering in the standard of living caused by a shift in the skills required to work.
To counter this, a recently finished UNV/UNDP project targeting Karakalpakstan, Uzbekistan, aimed to improve the low living standards and reduce the effect of TB through the empowerment of volunteers in the local communities.
Just after Christmas last year the underprivileged people of Eikwe, Ghana, received an unexpected gift. Volunteers from the Takoradi district, led by volunteer coordinators Kwesi Banson and Samuel Otabil, gathered together as many clothes, food and books as they could and then drove the one and a half hours to deliver them to those lacking these basic provisions.
Meet Aneta Piatek. She’s been working in the remote area of Paoua in the Central African Republic since 2010. In her official role, she’s a UN Volunteer with UNHCR as a Field Protection Officer – working with displaced persons and returning refugees. Due to limited operating resources, Aneta felt that not enough was being done to help the community. Like most volunteers, she wanted to do more so she started looking for other channels to work with the local community in a sustainable manner.