Ghana

CASH AND VOUCHER ASSISTANCE IN RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

In April 2020, CARE received a five million dollar grant from MARS to implement a multi-country program, including Cote d’Ivoire, Ecuador, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Peru, Thailand, and Venezuela1, with the aim of reducing the negative impacts of COVID-19 on vulnerable populations, especially women and girls, using complementary and multimodal approaches. A key activity of this program was the provision of cash and voucher assistance (CVA) to vulnerable populations to meet their diverse basic needs. Program data indicated that CVA was implemented in Cote d’Ivoire, Ecuador, Ghana, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, and Thailand. Monitoring data from different countries showed that CVA was unconditional; with cash modality representing 95% of transfers. Key targets populations for CVA activities vary by country and include: vulnerable households (Cote d’Ivoire, and Haiti); migrants and refugees (Honduras, Ecuador, and Thailand); domestic workers (Guatemala and Ecuador); survivors of GBV and other forms of violence against women (Guatemala and Ecuador); and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer/questioning (LGBTQI+) individuals (Ecuador). Across all projects (or countries), participants reported numerous uses of CVA including purchase foods stuff, payment of health services, hygiene services, rental/housing, savings and livelihoods activities.
Given the nature and scale of this program as well as its organizational commitment to learning, CARE was keen to understand the extent to which the project supported and protected vulnerable populations against the loss or disruption of their livelihoods in a gender sensitive manner. The study seeks to provide open-source learnings for peer
companies and agencies on how CVA was utilized in this program with two major questions: (i) How gender sensitive was the process for CARE’s CVA? (ii) How gender sensitive was the intended outcome of CARE’s CVA?
This documentation report compiles lessons from across the projects implemented in the targeted countries and draws from the diversity of their experiences to provide some recommendations on more gender sensitive CVA in the future. Read More...

Emergency Response After Action Review for CARE Ghana’s Response to the 2019 Floods in Upper East Region Final Evaluation

Torrential rains in the Upper East region of Ghana occurred from the 2nd to the 15th of October 2019. The continuous rains led to flooding in all the fifteen (15) administrative districts/municipalities which resulted in the collapse of buildings, deaths and displacement of a sizeable percentage of the population . The most affected districts were; Builsa North, Kassena Nankana Municipal, Bongo, Kassena Nankana West, Builsa South, Tempane and Talensi .
CARE International in Ghana, collaborated with government agencies namely National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO), National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Ghana Health Service (GHS) and Information Service Department in the region to respond to the emergency. Key interventions implemented as part of the emergency response were the distribution of food and non-food relief items, cash disbursements, Covid-19 risk communication to victims in four worst affected districts. The districts are; Bongo, Talensi Builsa North and Kassena Nankana Municipal. The relief items included; rice, oil, gari, sugar, Winimix, maize, beans, fish aqua tabs, sanitary pads, buckets bar soap and cloth. Additionally, cash to the tune of GHC 814.00 per flood affected household was disbursed through mobile money system and physical distribution to a total of 700 flood victims across the four districts in three tranches. The cash transfers were meant to enable beneficiaries rebuild after the disaster [12 pages]. Read More...

Ghana Strengthening Social Accountability Mechanism (GSAM) final

USAID/Ghana contracted Social Impact, Inc. to conduct an impact evaluation of USAID’s Ghana Strengthening Accountability Mechanisms (GSAM) program, which aims to increase accountability of local District Assemblies in Ghana. This randomized-controlled trial, impact evaluation tests the effect of two distinct efforts to increase accountability and improve service delivery outcomes at the district level. One-hundred and fifty of Ghana’s districts were matched and randomized into one of three groups: a top-down treatment group that received performance audits conducted by the central government Ghana Audit Service (GAS); a bottom-up treatment group that received civil-society organization (CSO) led scorecard campaigns; and a control group that did not receive either intervention.
Through surveys with citizens, local administrators, and local politicians and through a review of administrative data, we find that both CSO and GAS programming generally reduce citizen satisfaction with projects and services, but this is largely driven by districts that receive negative audit reports. That citizens are correctly attributing bad audit performance to poor-performing DAs is encouraging from the point of view of accountability. This progress with citizens has not, however, translated into many substantial changes in how administrators or politicians manage projects or project budgets. Neither GAS nor CSO programming improve transparency or corruption. GAS programming does reduce the incidence of partisan manipulation of public resources by politicians, and it also increases the perception of partisan manipulation among administrators. This is consistent with GAS sensitizing administrators to partisan manipulation and reducing its actual incidence among DA politicians.
CSO programming increases citizen-reported consultation on recent development, and administrators in CSO districts spend, on average, three hours more responding to constituents. Reasons that the intervention did not have a stronger impact on district officials includes (1) natural limits to the number of citizens reached by the intervention, (2) limited district government capacity and frequent turnover, and (3) local government dependence on federal budget transfers. Read More...

Projet régional de Dialogue pour la Transhumance apaisée en Afrique de l’Ouest (PRODIATA)

Le Projet régional de Dialogue pour la Transhumance apaisée en Afrique de l’Ouest (PRODIATA) est mis en oeuvre pour opérationnaliser la composante 2 du Programme Régional de Dialogue et d'Investissement pour le Pastoralisme et la transhumance au Sahel et dans les pays côtiers d’Afrique de l’Ouest (PREDIP). Le PREDIP est conçu dans une approche régionale avec un objectif général de renforcer la contribution du pastoralisme et de la transhumance transfrontalière à la sécurité alimentaire et nutritionnelle, au développement socioéconomique équitable et à l’intégration régionale en Afrique de l’Ouest.
PRODIATA a pour objectif général de contribuer à long terme à faciliter une transhumance transfrontalière apaisée et à améliorer la nutrition des populations côtières et pastorales. L’objectif spécifique du projet est d’impliquer les acteurs locaux, nationaux et régionaux de la transhumance transfrontalière dans le dialogue et la bonne gouvernance des ressources et des espaces agro-sylvo-pastoraux en réduisant les risques de conflits et en améliorant la sécurité alimentaire. De façon spécifique, le projet viser à impliquer les acteurs locaux, nationaux et régionaux de la transhumance transfrontalière dans le dialogue et la bonne gouvernance des
ressources et des espaces agro-sylvo-pastoraux pour une réduction des risques de conflits et l’amélioration de la sécurité alimentaire. Read More...

Learning from Youth in West Africa in COVID-19

In July 2020, volunteers from the West Africa CARE Youth Network decided to learn more about what young women and men are experiencing in COVID-19, and how that should shape CARE’s response and our advocacy interests. This team interviewed 128 young people between the ages of 15 and 35 in 8 countries. 86 of the young people (67%) were young women. Volunteers used Whatsapp messages, phone calls, and recorded interviews to let young people tell their own stories. With a few guiding questions, and using ONA as a platform to structure and analyze the responses, the team has been able to see regional trends and individual stories that must shape humanitarian response to COVID-19 and recovery efforts in way that include young people—especially young women, meet their needs, and value their voices and leadership.

Interviewers had a set of questions from CARE’s Rapid Gender Analysis toolkit, where they asked young people about the biggest impact COVID-19 has in their lives, their biggest need right now, how they are responding to COVID-19, and what are their hopes for the future. Listening to their answers, interviewers categorized the responses based on a pre-set list of options also from the RGA toolkit.
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West Africa COVID-19 RGA May 2020

As of mid-April 2020, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Africa is relatively low. That said, there has only been limited testing in Africa, leading many experts to be concerned that Africa could still experience outbreaks on, or beyond, the scale experienced in other regions. Governments are imposing restrictions on movement to reduce the risk of potential outbreaks, and this is directly impacting the ability of humanitarian actors to provide necessary assistance. At the same time, some governments, notably the governments of Mali and Niger, are also expanding their safety nets to help people respond to COVID-19 and its impacts.
CARE’s Rapid Gender Analysis draws from CARE’s deep experience in the region, and from interviews with 266 people across 12 countries. It points to serious ongoing economic, health, and financial impacts that will be especially severe for women. It also paints a mixed picture of impact on women’s rights. Special concern is paid to encroaching limitations to women’s access to resources, as well as to their representation and participation in formal decision-making; increased incidents of gender-based violence. These worrying
observations are accompanied by hopeful examples of women leading the response to the COVID-19 crisis and finding ways to negotiate equitable relationships with men in their communities, as well as with their husbands/male partners at home. Read More...

BASELINE STUDY REPORT: AGRO-SOURCE: LAST-MILE AGRICULTURAL INPUT SUPPLY SYSTEMS

The Agro-Source project in Ghana is a two and half (2½) year project (July 2018 to December 2020). The overall goal of the Agro-Source project is to improve the productivity of 30,000 smallholder women farmers in five (5) districts i.e. Garu, Tempane, Bawku West, Lambussie-Karni and Nandom in the Upper East and West regions of Ghana through increased availability, access and use of good quality agricultural inputs by 2020.

The baseline study was to establish a benchmark against which to measure the progress and achievements of the project. It was to generate: information on the current status on the availability of quality agro-inputs in the target locations and information regarding smallholder women farmers’ access to and utilization of agro-inputs to improve their productivity.

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Ghana Social Accountability Mechanism (GSAM) Annual Report Year 4

The fourth year of implementation of the USAID-funded Ghana’s Strengthening Accountability Mechanisms (GSAM) project covered the period October 1, 2017 to September 30, 2018, during which the GSAM Consortium – CARE, OXFAM and ISODEC – continued with its activities in the 50 districts, known as the Social Accountability Districts. These activities were aimed primarily at strengthening the capacity of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and citizens to monitor and assess capital projects of their MMDAs, using scorecards, and to use the information generated to engage with the MMDAs to demand accountability and improved performance in capital project delivery. Read More...

Impact Assessment of Savings Groups

Researchers from IPA, along with CARE staff and their implementing partners, conducted a randomized evaluation of Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA) programs in Ghana, Malawi, and Uganda to examine two questions: Who joins savings groups? And, what is the impact on households from programs that promote savings groups? The evaluation used a randomized control trial (RCT) design, in which eligible communities were randomly divided into two sets: a set of villages with access to a VSLA program (the treatment group) and a set of villages where the program was not implemented during the study (the control group). The study started in Ghana in 2008 and in Malawi and Uganda in 2009, and the final data collection took place in 2011 in the three countries. Each site included a panel survey in which households were surveyed before the start of the program implementation and again two or three years later. Over 15,000 households in almost 950 communities were surveyed. The surveys covered a large variety of topics, including health, education, income-generating activities, asset holdings, food consumption, non-food expenditure, intra-household decision making and community involvement. At the time of the endline survey, after an average of two years of program implementation in the three sites, one third of respondents had joined a VSLA group. On average, members had been part of a group for 15 months and 61% of members had gone through a full savings cycle, normally lasting between 8 and 12 months. The evaluation should thus be thought of as assessing the relatively short-term impacts of the intervention. [62 pages] Read More...

Ghana’s Strengthening Accountability Mechanisms Project (GSAM) Baseline

Ghana’s Strengthening Accountability Mechanism (GSAM) project is a five (5) year USAID funded project which focuses on strengthening citizens’ oversight of capital development projects to improve local government transparency, accountability and performance in 100 districts of Ghana. GSAM is designed to strengthen social accountability by improving information to CSOs and the citizenry in the project districts to enhance their capacity to demand accountability. The project seeks to improve accountability by enhancing mechanisms of bottom-up social accountability in MMDAs through increasing the quality and quantity of information available to citizens about the effectiveness of capital projects through extensive CSO monitoring, the production of scorecards, and public information campaigns.
Prior to the rollout of the intervention, the GSAM team collected baseline data in 26 district assemblies in 8 regions of Ghana. The purpose of the baseline study was to establish the situation prior to the roll up of project interventions, document the first measurement of indicators to be used to determine progress, and which will serve as benchmarks for setting targets to be achieved at the completion of the project intervention. Read More...

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