What Does Sawa Do? Part 1 - Learnings from the Field

What Does Sawa Do? Part 1 - Learnings from the Field

Sawa World, has just celebrated three productive years of combating extreme poverty in some of the world poorest countries. Despite its successes, Sawa is striving to further innovate its model in order to support its Sawa Leaders more effectively in their work. A detailed survey among Leaders and Youth Journalists in 11 Sawa focus countries including Senegal, Rwanda, Cape Verde and Haiti has informed Sawa’s learning and growth.

Sawa Leaders initially indicated three years ago that international partnerships would be crucial to their projects’ growth. Although they have proven successful in the past, Leaders have experienced challenges with the mainly virtual partnerships Sawa help to create. They have been time consuming and require a reliable Internet connection. The Sawa Leaders expressed the need to be able to function independently of donations, handouts and charity.

In addition to learning from the Sawa Leaders, Sawa trained 210 youth journalist the last three years in five of its focus countries. The youth’s main feedback was that they face challenges when working on a voluntary basis to document the Sawa Leaders in their communities while trying to battle poverty in their countries. As a result, Sawa has developed three new approaches in their model to better assist the Sawa Leaders and the Youth Journalists. These will be tested in the early part of 2011 in one of Sawa's countries in Africa before applying them to the other Sawa focus countries.

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