Empowering communities in Mara
Eight women and three men, representing 11 groups (circles) participated in a one-day Trainer-of-Trainers workshop in Narok County. The workshop is part of activities under the Mara Community Livelihood Improvement Project, a project implemented by Action Africa Help International (AAH-I), and funded by Bread for the World (BftW). The goal of the project is to contribute to sustainable improvement of livelihoods of pastoral communities through strengthening their social and economic activities.
The objective of the workshop was to provide the participants, community-level facilitators, with theoretical and practical knowledge on the Reflect approach, along with its monitoring and evaluation techniques. Reflect is a training technique that provides a space for a group of people to meet and discuss issues relevant to them. The participants choose the topics themselves, according to their own priorities and are supported by a facilitator. It uses a range of participatory methods.
The training enhanced participants’ capacity to critically analyze and assess the value added potential of Reflect to small businesses owned by women. It is anticipated that these 11 participants will reach at least 300 other women with basic functional literacy for life skills, financial skills and family and livelihood skills in Narok County.
According to the facilitator, AAH-I’s Eric Wakoli, the training looked to extend and share knowledge on trends and shifts in literacy and numeracy provision and programming, and create capacity to for women to conduct small business. “Reflect used various tools that helped participants to consider and respond to their economic situation. The approach helps people to discover their potential as well as community and social needs, including rural dialogue and communication. It is a cyclical process and assists in addressing empowerment issues in our case equipping women to do small businesses”.
The training was participatory and practical, focusing on techniques, tools and tips of training management with Reflect Circle facilitators themselves delivering and critiquing their own presentations. “As Reflect facilitators we work with marginalized people. It was a great opportunity for us to go through this process and internalize it before we can work with others,” concludes Naisiae Lekenoi, one of the participants.