Resilient Communities Development Program
More people are suffering from poverty, food insecurity, and a lack of resources than ever before. According to the UN, more than 1 billion people in the world live on less than one dollar a day. Every 3.6 seconds another person dies of starvation and the large majority are children under the age of 5. More than 2.6 billion people–over 40 per cent of the world’s population–do not have basic sanitation, and more than one billion people still use unsafe sources of drinking water.
Unfortunately, the most common resources that we all share are being degraded at an alarming rate, often resulting in the increased adversity outlined above. RFI’s Resilient Communities program seeks to address the challenge of the diminishing capacity of individuals/communities to meet basic needs due many of the above factors. To ameliorate these issues, it’s necessary to determine and implement projects addressing multiple topics through a systemic approach. This ensures that sustainability is threaded throughout the community, creating a web of resiliency that can be depended upon in times of need.
The majority of sustainable development NGOs lack integrated approaches that focus on systemic change. This leads to fragmented projects, duplicated efforts, wasted resources and community chagrin. RFI believes that the myopic view of sustainability that many of these NGOs represent can only lead to surface-level change. RFI employs a fully integrated approach through the Resilient Communities program in collaboration with clients to affect systemic change, at a cost that is manageable for a wide range of individuals and communities.
RFI’s method for solving the aforementioned issues focuses first and foremost on collaborating with communities and organizations that have requested RFI’s partnership. This ensures that the development process is driven by community interests and community needs. A typical partnership consists of an initial visit and site assessment. This process includes: community engagement strategies to identify individual skills and assets, as well as additional associations and organizations to collaborate with; an assessment of physical, ecological, and cultural characteristics of the project site; and developing a project vision and plan in collaboration with those involved in/impacted by the project.
RFI will then work to develop a project design that will match assets with needs and, if necessary, find areas to leverage assets to gain access to outside resources, providing that it continues to serve to goal of building capacity so that population has the necessary tools to create their own opportunities moving forward. RFI will support the project partner in implementation and provide long-term support as needed. RFI will maintain close contact with former clients, ensuring that continued assessments are conducted to measure specific indicator statistics and ascertain client approval rates.
RFI in Ghana
The primary goal of the Resilient Communities Development Program: Ekumfi-Arkrah project is to increase overall community resiliency through the improvement of food and economic security and the enhancement of ecological health by bolstering local protection and restoration efforts.