October 2006

ICAI Secretariat

Welcome to the new Network Exchange

In a village near Damongo, Ghana

The Secretariat of ICA International is delighted to present this inaugural edition of the new and improved, electronic Network Exchange. For many years, our members and colleagues around the world received the printed Network Exchange in that familiar brown envelope with stamps from Belgium, filled with stories and reports from around the globe that reminded us we were part of something much larger. When ICA International undertook the current strategic reorganization, production of the newsletter was temporarily suspended in order to focus resources on a few essential activities. This period of time has given us the opportunity to reflect on the need for a network newsletter that can be easily shared via email and the web, with the option to print hard copy for members and colleagues without convenient internet access. This is our trial run and we encourage your feedback and suggestions for our next edition in January 2007!

Your colleagues sent in a variety of articles and reports for this edition – from a report on ICA Nepal’s work to index Nepalese civil society to an appreciation of the collaborative assistance of the Canadian ICA Associates to ICA Benin to a summary of the field activities of ICA Peru. The list goes on and on. The richness and diversity of work undertaken by our ICAs around the world, and the impact you and your colleagues are having on communities large and small, is nothing short of astonishing.

While visiting Ghana and many of the exceptional projects being led by ICA Ghana this summer, I was reminded that the vision, values, and methods we bring to the process of human development are completely unique and ever more urgently needed. We at ICAI are here to support your efforts, to bring you together, and to bring your voices and experience to international dialogues on the most pressing global issues of our time. Thank you for bearing with us during this period of time without a newsletter, and for doing your part to enable us to realize this new chapter in the life of our global network.


Sarah Miller

On behalf of the Secretariat and Communications Task Force

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Making a Difference Downunder

Report from ICA Bangladesh

Report from the ICA in Brussels

ICA BéninTraining Programme

Global Youth Programmes
Alliance and ToP Methods

The First 8 Months of 2006

ICA Ghana's Activities during

Japan: 2008 Conference News

Nepal: An Article on Civil Society

Broom to Wealth: A Sign of Hope

Peru: Report on ICA Peru from January through August

South Africa: TiTCH (Time to Come Home) Project and YFL Women's Day Event

ICA Taiwan Report

Tanzania: ICA Tanzania on the Move and
 Success Stories from Mto wa Mbu

United Kingdom:
ICA UK Report

United States :
International Conference Center

Report from OPAD


Making a Difference Downunder

Some of us on the big island at the bottom of the world are enabling graceful transitions to a sustainable future.

ICA Australia is an incorporated not-for-profit company with tax-deductible status for donations applied to our purposes nationally and overseas. We are a national association of about 70 colleagues who are mostly self-employed in facilitation and civil society activities in the public, private and community sectors. There are no paid staff. Two national gatherings are held annually in January and June, with our work focused through voluntary participation in seven teams.  Communications are enabled by a website, e-lists, email, Skype, phone, and local meetings.  Most of our work is accomplished by voluntary calls for “expressions of interest” in an assignment.  Most of us have experienced and practiced ICA transformational methods locally and overseas.

Five hundred plus have completed ToP Training Module 1, and many have done Modules 2-4.  Module 6 is being polished and refined to portray the ‘life understanding’ and ‘human depth’ of facilitation for practitioners.  Marketing is shifting from ‘ICA centred’ to ‘client centred”, with less apparent need to trumpet the wonders of the length and breadth of ICA history, which we all know is ‘wondrous’ and ‘amazing’!         

In recent years we have been developing and delivering ToP methods as the “Facilitative Leadership Program”.  The six modules range from learning basic facilitation tools of conversation and workshop to looking at the underlying dynamics of facilitation and the life understandings that underpin the methods.  The “brochures” in PDF format may be downloaded from a list at http://www.ica-australia.org/index.asp?fm=4.  A ToP Website is under development and will be linked to an International ToP website, also currently under development.

The program is marketed as ‘public’ or ‘in-house’ courses, mostly with the non-profit community sector and government natural resource management sector.  Several of these organisations have contracted to put their whole staff through the modules and are sponsoring some of their training staff to be accredited trainers.  There are 37 people in the Faculty group at various stages of preparation.

Over the past several years, teams of facilitators have travelled to East Timor (Timor Leste) to work with government, aid organizations, and community groups to help with their capacity building toward self-governance.  This work was interrupted by recent events and security issues.  Windows of opportunity are opening and ICA Australia is preparing to issue a call for “expressions of interest” to ICA colleagues.  How this call and assignment process is developed will assist us to make structured responses to other requests from the sub-continent and Pacific nations who ask for assistance.  This may bring ICA Australia into the role of a grant receiving and employing agency.

Most members of ICA Australia are also engaged in social justice activities concerning the environment, civil liberties, reconciliation with indigenous people, peace, immigration, global and corporate governance, world trade, and ending the war in Iraq.

Ray Richmond
Secretary, ICA Australia

Natural Resource Management practitioners in Queensland with ICA Australia facilitator Elaine Richmond.


Report from ICA Bangladesh

In 2002, ICA Bangladesh was initiated under the mentorship of Tatwa P. Timsina from ICA Nepal and with the close support of John and Robyn Hutchinson from ICA Australia and Shankar Jadhav from ICA India. Since its founding, ICA Bangladesh has worked to establish a culture of participation in Bangladesh and build networks with the ICAI, other national ICAs, and program partners. ICA Bangladesh is run by a young team of Bangladeshis. Despite various difficulties, our team has implemented a wide variety of trainings and community development activities applying ICA philosophy and methods.

Here is a snapshot of recent activities within ICA Bangladesh:

ICAI General Assembly: ICA Bangladesh’s Executive Director, Mr. Azizur Rahman, took part in the ICA International General Assembly held in Canada this year. ICA Bangladesh presented its activities to participants from national ICAs around the world and has applied for full statutory membership in ICA International.

IAF Conference: Mr. Azizur Rahman also recently participated in the Art and Mastery of Facilitation Conference in Baltimore, USA. He learned new facilitation concepts and practices from other ICA and non-ICA colleagues. Mr. Rahman introduced ICA Bangladesh to this North American conference and became an IAF member.

Youth and MDGs: ICA Bangladesh is interested in working on youth participation on the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Mr. Azizur Rahman recently participated in a conference on youth and the MDGs in Pakistan, hosted by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung. In addition, ICA Bangladesh plans to focus on training media professionals in order to improve reporting, information dissemination, and general awareness of the MDGs within Bangladesh.

Community Based Forest Management: This month, Dhaka ICA will participate in the Strategic Planning Workshop organized by the Caucus on Community Based Forest Management, funded by the Ford Foundation, in Pune, India. Mr. Azizur Rahman has been invited and granted funding to take part in the workshop as a board member of the Caucus. Through his participation, ICA Bangladesh will express its desire to work on forest projects in Bangladesh in partnership with the Caucus.

Sub-continental ICA Meeting: The third annual sub-continental ICA meeting will also be held in Pune, India this month, after the Ford Foundation workshop. Mr. Azizur Rahman, along with two more colleagues from Dhaka ICA, will represent Bangladesh in the meeting. Under the leadership of John Hutchinson of ICA Australia, sub-continental ICAs were initiated in order to share best practices and plan  sub-continental activities. Last year’s sub-continental meeting was held in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Publication: ICA Bangladesh published the second issue of its official newsletter Bay Waves in May 2006. The first issue was published in June 2005. Both issues were distributed at the recent ICAI GA in Canada, IAF conference in the USA, Global AIDS conference in Canada, and Youth and MDGs conference in Pakistan.

Partnership: ICA Bangladesh recently submitted funding requests for training in participatory methods and tools. In addition, we have approached the Bangladesh Ministry of Planning for an AIDS research project, MISEREOR for a civil-society strengthening project, and ICA Japan for an integrated community development project for landless people.

Training Events: Capacity-building training events for members of ICA Bangladesh will take place in October and November in Dhaka. John Hutchinson and Shankar Jadhav will serve as trainers for the events.

Upcoming Visit: ICA Bangladesh has received the exciting news that ICA International President Nelson Stover is coming to visit Bangladesh. Nelson and his wife Elaine will spend a week with us in February 2007 and plan to organize a training event and/or public gathering to support our organizational development.


A Report from The Institute of Cultural Affairs in Brussels

  • We are preparing for the autumn series of our basic course, Introduction to the Technology of Participation.  The course consists of four modules, with each module lasting two days. We train one module per month for four months and will teach it here in Brussels at our training centre and in Dublin, Ireland as part of the continuing education programme of All Hallows College.  The basic course will be repeated in the winter/spring, together with an advanced facilitation training course.  The advanced course consists of five three-day modules spread out over five months. These will also be offered in Brussels and Dublin.  You can find out more about these courses on our web site, www.icab.be.
  • We continue to have requests for other training events and various types of process consulting both here in Belgium and in other countries in Europe.
  • Jim Campbell wrote a chapter entitled, Renewing Social Capital, the Role of Civil Dialogue, for the new IAF Handbook, Creating a Culture of Collaboration.  The book is published by Jossey-Bass and is available at Amazon and other online book stores.
  • Jim Campbell has started his second two-year term as the volunteer European Representative for the International Association of Facilitators (IAF).  This work has gone well but does take a lot of his time.
  • Anna Stanley continues to divide her time between programme work and supporting services in the training centre. Along with Jim, she has celebrated her 25 anniversary of living in Belgium this year.
  • The Bed & Breakfast programme and the short term residents programme are both doing very well.  The B&B is running at about an 80% occupancy rate and the residents programme is always fully booked three to five months in advance.  We usually have people from 15 to 20 different countries staying here, which makes for a very interesting and sometimes challenging community life.
  • The new law governing not-for-profit organisations in Belgium is requiring us to make a number of significant changes.  We have had to introduce a new and much more complex bookkeeping system to meet the new reporting requirements and this has required the hiring of an accountant/auditor as a consultant.  We have rewritten the statues and are working through other operational changes.


ICA Benin Training Programme

The main activity undertaken recently by Lambassa ICA Bénin in partnership with another ICA is a training programme with the ICA Associates in Canada. In order to become a credible training provider , Lambassa ICA Bénin has made building its staff capacity a top priority. We have participated in several recent training events around the world, including in Nigeria (2003-2004), Ghana (2005 HIV/AIDS workshop), and the USA (2005 International ToP Training of Trainers). During all of these programs, we were advised to contact the ICA in Canada for a training programme in French.

As ICA methodologies are unknown in Bénin, it has been difficult to recruit potential course  participants. But our dream became a reality in December 2005 during a ToP training program in Cotonou from 15-21 December 2005. The trainer was Mrs. Marie-Noëlle Houzeau of the ICA Associates in Canada, who worked very hard to demonstrate to all participants the important role that ICA methods can play in promoting the human factor in world development. We invited governement officials to participate and experience how these methodologies can lead to many positive changes in Benin. All the participants expressed congratulations to us and to the ICA Associates for an excellent program.

Based on this success, we are now in discussion with the government for a national training programme in December 2006, facilitated by the ICA Associates. With this new opportunity, we wish to express all our gratitude to the ICA Associates for their cooperation despite the difficulties of the first programme.

Kassimou Issotina
Executive Director, Lambassa ICA Bénin


Global Youth Programmes Alliance

As we were preparing for the 2006 General Assembly in Toronto, Fred Simons, our venerable Executive Director, let me know that there was some interest in our Youth as Facilitative Leaders programme. Vira Lokhande was coming from India a week early to help with the preparations and learn about our YFL programme. Other participants were also hoping to share thoughts on youth involvement in ICA. I heard about fascinating youth programmes in Chile, Egypt, South Africa, and more. So it wasn’t a complete surprise when I learned that one of the global programme alliances identified during the conference was on youth and YFL.

Muzi Mbonani from South Africa and I were nominated to co-chair this international initiative. Then we quickly recruited Vira to our little team and the e-mail messages started to fly.

We determined that the place to begin is by asking some questions.

  • Which ICAs currently have youth programming?
  • Which of them are calling it Youth as Facilitative Leaders?
  • What does YFL or other youth programming look like in different ICAs?

Then we hope to be able to gather some resources to share among the community such as curriculum, programme design and activity ideas. This, in turn, could lead to cross-training among ICAs in youth programme development.

How do we propose to get this going? One way is a youth-focussed discussion board on LiveJournal.com where anyone involved in ICA youth programmes (YFL or others) will be able to connect to youth, youth support staff and mentors throughout the globe.

We look forward to building an on-line community of youth and adults who are engaged in empowering youth through collaborative facilitation.

If you have thoughts or suggestions on how the Global Youth Strategy can proceed, please contact either:

Cara Naiman at ICA Canada (cnaiman@icacan.ca)
Muzi Mbonani at Itereleng:ICA in South Africa (icatrainings@telkomsa.net)
Vira Lokhande at ICA India (vira_77@hotmail.com)

We welcome your participation.
Cara Naiman, ICA Canada

ToP Methods Development

An ICAI Strategic Alliance

At the ICAI General Assembly in June, Jo and Wayne Nelson were asked to coordinate a strategic alliance among ICAs to enhance ToP facilitation skills among ICA staff around the world. ICA Associates Inc. is prepared to support this work, and we are suggesting several initiatives to launch this strategic alliance.

Understanding the current situation

  • We suggest beginning with a general survey for each ICA organization. It will focus on their facilitators, activities, topics they address regularly, how they get ToP training, what skill development initiatives are currently in place, and what is needed. We need to gain a collective understanding of the current situation. Doing this survey will also get all of us thinking about ToP skill development. It will be launched this Fall.
  • A self-assessment questionnaire for each ICA facilitator. This will enable each ICA ToP facilitator to think, in some depth, about their own journey and what they need in order to move to new skill levels.   We believe this will enable us to see the full spectrum of our current capacities as well as understand our needs in very specific ways. The information from this initiative will be very useful in developing local, regional and global training plans. It will also provide us with detailed information on training needs that can be used to secure funds for capacity development. The self-assessment questionnaire will be set to individual facilitators as they are identified by each ICA. We hope to have complete results before the end of 2006.

Curriculum Sharing

Representatives from several ICAs have asked ICA Associates for copies of our facilitator training curriculum. These manuals will be useful as internal training resources as well as reference material for those involved in curriculum development. ICA Associates will offer trainer and participant manuals for:

  • Group Facilitation
  • Facilitated Planning
  • Meetings That Work

ICA Associates will send a message to each ICA during Fall 2006 making this offer and send materials to those who request them.

ToP Facilitator Certification program

Representatives of several ICAs have been developing an evidence-based certification program over the past several years. ICA Associates - Canada and ICA - USA have each certified several ToP facilitators using these tools. LENS International - Malaysia is prepared to roll out this process. ICA Taiwan is integrating certification into an existing training program. ICA in Australia is currently discussing it and will likely spend some time on it in their January 2007 meeting. ICAs in UK and Belgium have also expressed interest. To date the following steps have been taken toward development of a certification course.

  • We have identified the major facilitator competencies that ToP facilitators need in order to be effective. These competencies are very close to IAF’s competencies, with the addition of specific competencies related directly to ToP methods.
  • We have established a global consensus among those involved to date that these are the necessary competencies for ToP facilitators.
  • We have identified the indicators of competence for each item.
  • We have identified the standards we will use to assess competence.
  • We have designed a generic process to assess the competence of individual ToP facilitators.
  • The operating consensus is that there is flexibility in designing the assessment process for each nation, while maintaining global consistency and quality standards.

We believe the next step in this area is developing “Rubrics” for each competency. Rubrics are a way of describing levels of competence. They use ordinary descriptive language to help people recognize a range of levels of competence. Rubrics are used by those involved in performance measurement to provide grounded examples of performance at different levels. Governments are using rubrics to assess competence in things like organizational management. Rubrics would describe managerial abilities at different levels. Educators use rubrics to help assess the quality of a student’s writing; for example a “rubric” might be a series of sample paragraphs that give examples of increasingly effective use of a language.

This next step of developing rubrics will enable us to be even more specific about the standards we use when assessing competence. We believe it will help us see where each facilitator is on their learning journey. This will involve every ICA that chooses to be involved.  We hope that the inclusion of all ICAs will enable us to see a full range of standards. We anticipate launching this initiative in January 2007.

Longer Term Considerations

  • Funding - - It may be possible to look at developing funds to support in depth facilitation training for ICA staff.  Many national government and multilateral organizations have identified capacity building for NGO’s in developing nations as a priority. Capacity-building funds may be attached to programs and projects focused on critical issues. Women’s empowerment, HIV/AIDS and local economic development are specially noted.
  • ToP Facilitator Development Network - - It will be necessary to strengthen the connections among ICAs in order to ensure ongoing improvement in our capacity to use and continue development of ToP methods. In the initial survey, we will be asking each ICA to identify one person as the contact person for this initiative. As this Strategic Alliance matures, we will be seeking ways to enhance the dialogue among ICAs.


A Report from ICA Chile on the first eight months of 2006

Whole Team Planning:  The Chile team is operating under an integrated plan, which was facilitated by Isabel de la Maza and Isabel Rodríguez. The implementation has guided us toward many new and expanded activities.

Handicapped Youth Training:  Three wonderful leadership programs were implemented with handicapped youth in Antofagasta, Valparaíso, and Santiago, resulting in a great new testimonial video and a whole new energy among youth leadership, including some handicapped youth, in these communities. The professionally produced video is available for use by other ICAs.

Market Research:  A team of Valparaíso University students conducted a market research study to locate new enterprise clients for ICA facilitation programs. 

International Projects:  Funded facilitation was carried out in LaPaz, Bolivia; a trainer was sent to a program in Chiapas, Mexico; a German colleague led an Open Space facilitation for the ICA Chile team; and Eduard Christensen participated in the ICAI General Assembly in Toronto, Canada.

New Web Site:  Check out the newly improved ICA Chile website at www.icachile.cl

Celebration:  We want to share the wonderful news that our fearless leader, Eduard Christensen, is recovering very well from his heart attack and surgery, and is still our great inspiration.


A Report on ICA Ghana’s activities during September 2006

Children in a village near Damongo, Ghana

Once again, as members of the network, we are happy to share with you our success stories on major activities carried out during the month of September 2006.

Staff: The numerical strength still stands at 20 staff members. Half the staff continue to carry out administrative and project monitoring activities and are based in Accra. The remaining 10 staff are located at project sites in Sefwi Wiawso, Prestea, Damongo, Kpando, and Zabzugu-Tatale as field officers.

The major activities and achievements of the month are:

Allanblackia Project:  A socio-economic survey in ten selected communities where the Allanblackia seed is endemic which took off during the later part of last year, and is ongoing. Structured questionnaires are administered to collectors within these communities. They are intended to collate data, which will be used for comparison with a baseline survey conducted at the beginning of the project. The aim of this survey is to gather as much information as possible for project partners to be able to assess the impact of the project on the socio-economic lives of the rural communities.

In a village near Damongo

In addition, preparation for a workshop related to the Allanblanckia Project, designed for teachers of selected schools in the Wassa West District, continues and will be carried out by the end of September.

AJWS Partnership Meeting: We also took part in a planning meeting organized for all American Jewish World Service (AJWS) partners in Accra. The meeting, which was the first of its kind, created a platform for all NGOs who are supported by AJWS to know one another and share ideas on various activities they are carrying out. It was also a period for planning how to hold similar meetings on a regular basis to allow for the sharing of information and knowledge that will ensure effective implementation of projects.


2008 Conference News

Advancing the Human Dimension of Society
This is the main theme of the conference in September 2008!  A sample brochure was sent out by email, and the printed brochures will reach you in October.  Already there is lots of activity.  Here is a sample:

  • During the last week of August, Wayne Ellsworth of ICA Japan attended the Asian International Association of Facilitators and recruited 50 conference participants from across Asia, including 5 who promised to be conference co-facilitators.  What’s more, many people offered sessions for the pre-conference workshops!
  • In early September, the General Secretary of CIVICUS, Kumi Nodoo, was in Tokyo. We had lunch and really great discussions; the outcome was that he agreed to put our brochure on CIVICUS’s web site, prepare a speech, and co-lead the working group on Knowledge Sharing and Citizen Advocacy.
  • We had a wonderful “Conversation Café” here in Tokyo, a great personal technology to complement our ToP® seminars.
  • Several ICAs volunteered to hold research events during 2007, including Australia, India, and Kenya, even before anyone was asked.
  • Fifteen organizations have already agreed to participate in the conference, from all around the world.
  • We gave a presentation on ICA and the Advancing the Human Dimension of Society Global Conference at the Facilitators Association of Japan, which has a membership of 800 people.
  • The brochure has been translated into Japanese, and is being translated into six more languages.

Why not look at the working groups, and just for fun, pick those of interest, and send us an email?  And make suggestions for the ‘final’ brochure due out by January. Your active research into some of the working groups will be helpful too, with interesting web sites, books, articles, songs, and poetry, offered soon as a starting set, to build the momentum.   And your projects and programs will be essential learning and preparation experiences.

The journey of preparation will make this global conference exciting, meaningful, and worthy of making the fantastic trip to Japan.  We have begun to work on site visit selection, from an affordable waste management system to an experiential education where everyone has a free computer with thousands of ‘learning books’ already included!

Wayne Ellsworth, for the 2008 Global Conference Task Force


An article on 'civil society'

Since its establishment in 1998, ICA Nepal has been consolidating civil society, especially at the grassroots level, through human development activities implemented in different communities in partnership with donors. The work of identifying different groups, clubs, and local NGOs takes places first; then we study them and help build their capacity and leadership as per needs/problems by organising trainings, meetings, and workshops. This process helps to set up civil society where it is required and strengthen these networks in order to develop democratic norms and values in all the social sectors. Our ultimate goal in enhancing the capacity of civil society organizations (CSOs) is to integrate instructions and suggestions furnished by civil society into the process of government, both at the national and local levels.

Because of the activities mentioned above, ICA Nepal was selected as the National Coordinating Organisation in Nepal for CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation. CIVICUS has defined civil society as "the arena between family, government and market where people voluntarily associate to advance common interest". Two of ICA Nepal’s staff members participated in a training course on the Civil Society Index (CSI), a tool for carrying out action research, conducted by CIVICUS in South Africa. With technical input from CIVICUS and financial support of ACTION AID Nepal and IDRC, we completed the first phase of action research on civil society in Nepal in June 2006.

Formation of teams
ICA Nepal formulated two teams comprised of National Index and Participatory Researchers, in order to carry out the project. A National Advisory Group (NAG) was also formed in order to provide active support. The NAG was comprised of 15 members with expertise and experiences working in civil society, the supreme court, business, philanthropy, the trans-Himalayan region, Dalits (a so-called untouchable community), and the academy.

Press Conference
We organized an orientation programme for media representitives to provide a brief overview on the CSI. The discussion also focused on various aspects of civil society organisation and its development in Nepal. Fourteen journalists from various mass media organizations attended the programme and it was covered in several mass media outlets.

Regional Stakeholder Consultation
Questionnaires prepared by CIVICUS were distributed to twenty organizations and regional stakeholders of each of Nepal’s eight districts. A one day workshop was organised for each of the twenty organizations, which focused on a variety of topics, including human rights, youth, women, saving credit, labour, consumer, political parties, religion, transport, Dalit, and NGO federation, in each district. The workshop focused on the potential and weakness of civil society and future strategies to be taken for their improvement.

Civil Society Policy Impact Study
We interviewed 100 key informants such as civil society experts, activists, practitioners and researchers about their response toward civil society development in the country.

Media Review
ICA Nepal carried out a media review by involving the graduate and master degree students studying in a College of Journalism and Mass Communication. Before the media survey, ICA organized an orientation workshop during which the media monitoring team was appraised of the CSI work and various steps of media review. They were also made aware of the sensitivity of the media monitoring and its role in civil society index work.

Community Survey
The research team visited eight districts and implemented this work simultaneously with the regional stakeholder consultation programme. Here, the local inhabitants were informed of  the purpose of the project and questions were asked of one hundred people, including individuals representing diverse ethnic, indigenous, economic, caste, and religious groups. Altogether, 800 questionnaires were filled up in 8 districts.

Support to Democratic Movement
While we were implementing the CSI project, the protest and struggle by the Nepali people against the autocratic government intensified. People from all walks of life participated in the protest programmes instinctively. ICA Nepal's members and staff participated in these programmes in various parts of the country. In the process of participating actively in the struggle for restoration of democracy in the country, our staff member Atma Ram Upadhaya, Coordinator of the Civil Society Development Programme, was sentenced for a few days for his participation in the movement.       

Status of Civil Society in Nepal
In the past, there were many groups of people who worked for social benefit and development in various forms who were not registered with any authority. Since then there have been many ups and downs. Two years ago, when ICA Nepal started implementing the 'Civil Society Index' project, many aspects related to CSOs were unclear in Nepal. Even within the research period, opinions about the CSOs changed several times because of the changing political conditions. In spite of all these changes, ICA completed the project successfully.

The CSI findings show that the status of CSOs in Nepal is weak. Rated on a 0 to 3 scale, the structure is ranked 1.7, values 1.7, environment 1.3, and impact 1.4. The indicators show that there is a need for massive improvement in civil society’s structure, values, impact and environment. Now, democracy has been reinstated and we can anticipate that the overall status of the CSOs will improve in the days to come in Nepal.


Broom to Wealth: A Sign of Hope

Wonders, they say, never end. One would never believe that a group of rural women could create wealth out of mere brooms used in sweeping. SURPRISED?! Read on…

As part of its rural development effort across Nigeria, the Nigerian Integrated Rural Accelerated Development Organisation (NIRADO) worked with twenty community-based groups, one of which is the Oganiru Women Society, in the Igbo-Eze North and South Local Government Areas of Enugu State, South-Eastern Nigeria. The Oganiru Women Society was founded in the early 1980s by over a hundred women with the shared goal of becoming self-sufficient in food production.

The Alor-Agu community has an estimated population of about ten thousand, where the major occupation is farming. The community presently enjoys amenities like electricity, but the availability of potable water was of major concern to the people and especially to women and children who had to trek long distances to get water for domestic use. Unfortunately, there are no standard health care facilities to go to in case of illness resulting from use of unclean water. This was the state of things before NIRADO’s intervention.

During the program, which was attended by over a hundred women despite being told that they were to select thirty people to attend, the Oganiru Women Society enthusiastically came up with the vision to increase their financial base, produce food in abundance, establish an adult education school, and carry out campaigns towards healthy living.

Three months after the development planning with NIRADO, the women reported the following:

  • 250 bundles of brooms stored for sale;
  • 125 litres of palm oil jointly contributed, for sale;
  • A bank account with N2000 deposited; and
  • Adult Education classes initiated with 58 students, 2 volunteers, and 1 paid teacher.

Three months later, during NIRADO’s Community Leadership Development Training, they reported the following as their activities and achievements:

  • Contributed an additional 115 brooms and sold all to realize N250,000;
  • Bought 60 water pipes and 30 pipe sockets for extension of water to the interior parts of the village; and
  • Purchased water tap casings and fittings with N31, 250 realized from sale of 125 litres of palm oil, amongst others.

During the recently concluded NIRADO Self-Assessment visit to the group, the Oganiru Women Society reported further achievements, which include:

  • Purchased cassava grating machine with all its components;
  • Purchased palm oil processing machine;
  • Purchased flour or grains grinding machines;
  • Got a merit award from the sons and daughters association of the town for their services to the community; and
  • Acquired land and started construction of an Engine house.

This group is one amongst several other community groups that have strictly followed the plans developed with NIRADO. The most interesting aspect of their activities is that they are using resources in their locality to improve their lives. All the projects executed by them came through the contribution of brooms. They contributed two bundles of brooms (made from palm) every month. They do not contribute cash.

One of the women described the project this way:

“We agreed that we shall not contribute cash, but other valuable items. Contributing cash brings quarrel among the rich and the poor. When the poor did not contribute, the rich may not be happy and vice versa. To avoid this, we now ask both the rich and poor to contribute brooms. This has been sustaining us since NIRADO’s visit and we hope to be what we want through this process.” - Hajia Aishetu Eze


ICA Peru Report: January through August 2006

New Board of Directors
During this time period, perhaps the most significant change has been the replacement of the entire Board in order to facilitate the work being carried out in the field.  Although the names are not new, the meaning of the change is profound.  Other than Ken and Alison Hamje, who have returned to Peru, the members of the new Board are all old hands who came out of the villages of Peru during the early days of the ICA here, and who have 20 uninterrupted years of experience with the ICA, both in Peru and elsewhere.  There is no longer a burdensome division in the Board.  There is freshness and excitement in the air. 

Here are our new Board Members:

Vice President:
Executive Director:
Jesús Aburto Arias
Esaud Caycho Espilco
Gloria Santos Resurrección
Gloria Malasquez Arias
Rocío Torres Robles 
Kenneth Hamje
Pedro Aburto, Alison Hamje, Martha Sanchez

Our Own Website
Thanks to Peter Ellins, we now have our own website: www.ica-peru.org.  Soon we will provide for English speakers and hope also to have a third option for Quechua.

Field Activities
Over the past eight months, we have continued our projects in the rural areas both to the North and to the South of Lima, along the coast, and into the communities of the Andes Mountains. 

Last year’s PEP with the Fish-Farmer’s Association of Santa Rosa, Ancash has led to other formations in the State of Ancash, including:

  • Leadership Formation Course in the Province of Huari
  • Guinea Pig Producer Conference in the Fortaleza Province
  • Basic and Intermediate Training in fruit and vegetable artwork

In the State of Lima, Cañete Province, Districts of Pacaran, Zuñiga and Chocos, the ICA has been facilitating a comprehensive project for strengthening local leadership toward improving the technical characteristics of small animal husbandry, with the following highlights:

  • Ongoing training in small animal husbandry
  • 5-day community planning and formation course
  • Basic and Intermediate Training in fruit and vegetable artwork
  • Ongoing training in ecologic systems for grape and avocado production
  • Credit issued to 85 local producers
  • 1000 Black Mexican avocado trees planted, 1000 grape vines planted

Additionally, at the extreme Northeastern corner of the State of Lima, Oyon Province, in the communities of Cochamarca and Colcapampa, the Rural Development and Environmental Conservation Project, with focuses on increasing the local ecologically sound production of peaches, avocadoes and cherimoya (a delicious local fruit), increasing the production of goats, sheep and vacunas (variety of llama), and protecting the environment, reports the following accomplishments:

  • 6 organic fruit-production training events 
  • Local potable water system upgraded
  • 5 demonstration bio-digesters built
  • 5 demonstration solar panel projects in operation
  • 2 demonstration public bathrooms built
  • 1200 improved peach trees planted

“100 Valleys” Project
During this time period the ten-year “100 Valleys” project was designed and submitted for major funding in order to reap current opportunities of ongoing political and economic stability, staff preparedness, and the beginning of a new five-year presidential term to carry out a full-scale leadership formation strategy to reach the farthest corners of the entire Sierra Region of the country and bring about a doubling of economic activity and quality of living for Peru’s extensive rural mountain population.  This project already has the support of 25 top-level advisors, 33 project-implementation entities and 43 technical assistance sources, and will also call for a three-fold increase in ICA staffing in the coming months.  For full information, see “100 Valleys” on our website: www.ica-peru.org.

South Africa

TiTCH (Time To Come Home) Project

During May 2006, we collaborated with one of our key partners, Ditshwanelo CARAS, on a project working with 3 schools about 50km west of Johannesburg with the overall purpose to increase the understanding of how racism, sexism and discrimination function at the school level and society at large.  

Female group from different schools working on tackling early messages received about males
and females

The project also aimed to build collaborative relationships between 3 historically separated communities and school which, under the apartheid era, were known as Black / Bantu (or African), coloured (or mixed race) and white (or European).  In spite of 12 years of democracy, these divisions persist and the legacy of apartheid can clearly be seen in continuing inequality between the different schools.

Twelve, 2-day workshops on Understanding & Tackling Racism, Sexism and all forms of Discrimination were conducted during the month of May 2006. The workshops were held separately with young people (age 14-19) and teachers, and each group represented a mix of participants from the 3 schools.

Discussion between teachers from 3 schools during the workshop.

The workshops were generally very effective and powerful, enabling many people to openly and safely discuss deep and personal issues, including defining themselves and their identities.  In many cases, this was a new experience and some suggested this had been a life-changing experience.  This was captured eloquently by one participant:

“Thank you for allowing me to attend this workshop.  I would like to quote from a TV advert that you all know.  ‘Today, I woke up in a place where the size of your feet don’t count; I woke up in a place where I don’t need a gun to make you listen; I woke up in a place that said be what you want to be.  South Africa, alive with possibilities.’  Let us put aside the negativity, put aside the obstacles in our way because it is time for all of us to come home: that, my friends, is the TiTCH project.  Thank you.”
(By Nobuntu Banca, Mohlakeng)

Team building activity - The Knot

Another participant re-defined the word Discrimination as “Dis Crime against the Nation”.  “People always make differences (to be) negative not positive; we need to focus more on the positive side of our differences” was another comment made after one of the workshops.  Although there is so much more work to be done, given the persistent levels of oppression and inequality in South Africa, with such creativity amongst young people, there is surely hope for the future.

For further information on this project, a full report is available from either organisation; please look at the websites www.ica-southafrica.org and www.caras.org.za

- John Cornwell & Thembi Maxamba (John & Thembi are both Itereleng:ICA staff members and were facilitators for the TiTCH project)

YFL Women's Day Event, on August 9th 2006

(Held to mark the 50th Anniversary of a famous Women’s March against the Apartheid Pass Laws in 1956, which was attended by over 20,000 women of all races from across South Africa.  The day has been a Public holiday since Liberation in 1994.)

Fashion Show presented by one of the member schools

Firstly, we arrived at Jabulani Technical High School in Soweto where the event was hosted.  We had Clint Ramothatha (a YFL member) as our Master of Ceremonies; he was a good MC, he had hyper energy and his jokes were very funny.  The programme was nice because we had speeches and a fashion show, amongst others.  Although I was so nervous when I did my speech, as a YFL representative, I did give myself a tap on the back because I did well.  Sthembelo Radebe, a former YFL co-ordinator did some nice poetry, which was really good and got women shaking and moving with excitement.

We did this event because we wanted to show women that they are very special in big and in small ways.  We wanted them to embrace their femininity and we are grateful for what they do for their families and to say thank you to those women who brought freedom for women in South Africa.  Although they were not there, we dedicated the event to them.

People from New Start (an organisation which offers VCT services) came and they were showing the right path to real life by offering testing and counselling, which was a great idea.  It is very important for young people to test so that they can make better decisions for their lives whilst knowing their status.  A total of 38 people got tested that day, which was a very reasonable number.  So, hopefully, they made the right choice to go and get tested and move forward with their lives.

There was also a speech from former Miss Earth SA, Catherine Constantinides, who is also an environmental activist, and this was a killer speech; her words were so powerful.  She really made me think that what I’m doing with my life is worth it and she is one of a kind, as well as being a role model to young people.  She also helps people from disadvantaged communities and that was the highlight for me.  She is really a proudly South African and a very proud Community Developer.

Some of the people who came were young people we trained in the middle of this year from different parts of Johannesburg and it was really nice to see them together as YFL, not their separate schools and groups.  We were one young people’s group and we enjoyed being together on that day.





  YFL Team

Energiser being done with the whole group at the event .

Further information about Youth as Facilitative Leaders (YFL) is  available on our website www.ica-southafrica.org

Nontlantla Maeteletja, Reporting for YFL in Johannesburg

(Nontlantla is a youth facilitator, aged 18.  She has been part of the YFL programme since 2002.)


ICA Taiwan Report

We are in the midst of a swirl of activities. I am in Hong Kong applying ORID to Executive Coaching and designing a Facilitation Training Program. I will spend most of September in China and Hong Kong with different clients.  Richard West has left for the US to make a presentation at the Shaman’s Conference in San Francisco and meet with several colleagues and friends.  Evelyn Philbrook is in the States caring for her mother’s healing in California.  Gail West has just returned from Russia and the “Open Space on Open Space” Conference.  She is also preparing for Harrison Owens' arrival in Taiwan for a week at the end of October and will be involved in several Open Space programs with different sectors in Taiwan in September.

We are investigating new projects in applying ToP as a university course in Taiwan, and using Appreciative Inquiry (Imagine Chicago) on a Taiwan-wide basis.

Park Yong Chul, an old friend and ICA colleague from Korea, contacted us through the ICAI network.  Two of his colleagues attended our last TOP training and we hope to support their development journey.

Lawrence E. Philbrook
Executive Director, ICA Taiwan


ICA Tanzania on the move

‘To live a creative life we must lose our fear of being wrong.’ - Joseph Chilton Pearce

This quote has really encouraged ICA Tanzania to expand its services. For many years, ICAT has been implementing different development programs in rural areas (HIV/AIDS, Economic Capacity Building, Legal Literacy, Reduction of Health Risks for Mother and Child from indoor air pollution). However, in implementing these programs, we have never involved ourselves in the facilitation job that is the core work within ICA. This year, ICAT started to provide facilitation services as part of fundraising. So for those who are facilitation gurus, please join hands with us.

Ester Mnzava (trained home-based care provider) holds a baby of Paulina, left, who lives with HIV/AIDS, during a home visit under the ICAT home-based care program

In another development, ICAT conducted a baseline survey in a new division called Longido (with 12 villages and about 40,000 people), which was part of Monduli district (now it is in the new-formed district of Longido). This baseline survey aims to collect relevant information regarding community demand for future projects that will be established. Through this survey, it has been observed that the majority of Maasai people are less informed about HIV/AIDS, have a high level of illiteracy for adults (59%), live in poor sanitation conditions, and have a big problem regarding water.

In addition, in continuing to serve the community, ICAT conducted village sensitization meeting on HIV/AIDS in 10 villages and 3 secondary schools, and also continues with voluntary counseling and testing services in the Monduli district.

Orphans have also not been left behind. ICAT has supported 400 primary school pupils in Handeni district, and these pupils were given school uniforms, shoes, bags and exercise books.

Charles Luoga
ICA Tanzania

Success stories from ICA work in Mto wa Mbu
The first of three stories serialized in Network Exchange

Nashangiki Loboye used to have such problems with her eyes that she had to take a four-hour bus ride to Moshi twice a month to consult a doctor.

Loboye, an elderly Maasai woman who does not know how old she is, has had infections in her eyes for years. One was so serious that she had to stay in the hospital in Moshi for a month. At other times, she would have to stay for five or six days at a time.

Plagued with headaches and coughs, she was often too sick to do the intricate Maasai beadwork that she sells to tourists to help her earn money.

Her illnesses affected the family finances in other ways, too. She estimates that her family has spent as much as 100,000 Tanzanian shillings over the years on her doctor’s fees, medicine and travel to the hospital. That’s the equivalent of about $100, a small fortune in Maasai terms. 

Nor was she the only one in her family to face frequent sickness. Children often fell ill with severe coughs and fevers.

The problem was Loboye’s traditional Maasai housing. The houses are round, perhaps 25 feet across and made of mud bound together with cow dung. Each house has about three windows, each the size of a child’s fist.
Maasai women do all the family’s cooking over wood fires inside these huts. Smoke and soot cover everything and get in the eyes and lungs. Often, people cannot see each other because the soot is so thick. Nor can they see scorpions and snakes clearly enough to avoid their bites.

Lung cancer, respiratory problems and eye infections are common among Maasai women and children as a result. An additional concern is that Maasai women often have babies that weigh too little, a phenomenon that can be caused by indoor air pollution.

Men spend most of their time outside and are not as affected by the health problems.

The solution to Loboye’s problem came in the form of a chimney. ICA worker Charles Luoga, who is based in Mto wa Mbu, put together the money for a pilot project aimed at renovating 150 Maasai huts, installing hearths, chimneys, larger windows and routes for air flow. This often involves taking down a wall inside the hut that separates the goats and chickens from the living space for humans. The total cost is about US$110 for each hut.

This is a controversial project. Maasai tend to be traditional. Most parts of their lives have not changed in hundreds of years. Many of the men were vehemently opposed to the changes and forbade their wives to have the work done.

Loboye’s daughter, Njochoo Loboye, who lives without a husband, agreed to have her hut transformed. Her mother was skeptical and refused to have hers done, although it was right next to her daughter’s. But in April 2003, after yet another stay in the hospital and course of antibiotics for her failing eyesight, the elder Loboye went to stay in her daughter’s home.
She’s had no trouble with her eyes since. She refuses to spend another night in her own home.

Sitting in a white plastic chair under a tree by her daughter’s house, her ears adorned with the traditional Maasai earrings, seven necklaces around her neck, three bracelets on each arm, she gestures proudly to the chimney.

Now, she says, she doesn’t suffer. The children are healthier, too. Last time she made the trek to the hospital in Moshi, the doctor told her that any problems she has with her eyes now are just because she is old.

Alanna Mitchell
Award-winning science and environment writer for the Canadian Globe and Mail and author of Dancing at the Red Sea.

United Kingdom

ICA UK report

Our training and facilitation work continues both nationally and internationally. July saw us completing a number of contracts with (largely) public sector bodies in the UK, and a training in Berlin with volunteer-sending and receiving organisations, with a further contract in Zambia completed for Sightsavers International in early August. We are now gearing up for our schedule of open ToP courses in the last few months of 2006. We are also delighted to have recruited a new ToP Coordinator, Julie Stuart, who will be starting her job in earnest this month and who will be helping not just with the coordination of in-house and public training courses, but in their delivery as well. Julie will be based in her home in Northern Ireland, thus adding a further dynamic to our distance management challenge!

In July, several volunteers from the ICA:UK network organised a Volunteer Service Programme reunion, which brought together about 30 people with different lengths of experience with ICA. The wider programme is still suspended, but events like this remind us of the crucial role that the programme has played, not only in building ICA:UK itself, but also in the lives of the individuals who experienced it.

Anne Wilshin, the Youth Programme Coordinator, left us in July to work for an International School in Tanzania, and so far we have been unsuccessful in our attempts to recruit a successor for her. The programme is in good shape, though, with some funding already acquired, partners in place, the offer of some voluntary support, and more potential funding in the pipeline. So we are confident that we will find the right person to continue to develop the programme in the next few months.

Our international programme of support for ICAs overseas, and particularly Africa, also continues: the past few weeks have opened up some possibilities for further support which we are currently exploring with them.

Jonathan Dudding

United States

The International Conference Center

The next time you travel through Chicago, why not stay with the International Conference Center! For those of you who have visited us in the past, we believe you will be delighted with some of the changes we’ve made in sprucing up rooms and adding WiFi for your convenience.  For those of you who have not been with us before, we invite you to experience our 140-bed retreat center located in the heart of the now thriving, vibrant neighborhood known as “Uptown.”  Either way, renew acquaintances with longtime friends of the ICA and engage with some new ones to boot.  Whether you come individually or with a group, Marge, John, Ed and the entire ICC staff awaits your arrival with open arms.  For more information about our current affordable rates and abilities to fulfill your meeting or vacationing needs, please contact us at 773-769-6363 or on the web at www.ica-conferencecenter.org.


A report from the Organisation for the Promotion of Meaningful Development through Active Participation (OPAD)

The Organisation for the Promotion of Meaningful Development through Active Participation (OPAD) was formed in 2002 by former ICA Zambia staff members as a rural organisation working to empower people to achieve sustainable development by facilitating their meaningful participation. Our mission is to improve livelihoods by ensuring that the poor have a voice and access to and control over resources, so that they are enabled to effectively participate in their own sustainable development. OPAD has five project areas in 3 provinces of Zambia. The project areas are:

  • Beatrice Lubesha in her rain-fed tomato field (Crop Diversification)

    Naluyanda Integrated Development Project, involving 4000 farmers (Central Province)
  • Chibombo Rural Development Project, involving 700 farmers (Central Province)
  • Munga Project, involving 600 women (Central Province)
  • Mwanamainda Project, involving 200 households (Southern Province)
  • Chipapa Project, involving 700 farmers (Lusaka central)

Over the last six months, OPAD has been involved in the following activities:

  • 1800 farmers were trained in sustainable agriculture, leadership skills, and HIV/AIDS awareness (1040 females and 960 males). Group cohesion was strengthened among 65 groups. As a result of the training, groups continue to meet regularly and discuss development issues. There has been improved female participation and women are taking up leadership roles.
  • Farmers have been taught how to grow their own maize seed and so far 8.75 tons of maize and 3.85 tons of groundnuts have been harvested. 800 farmers can now access maize and 385 farmers can access groundnuts locally. They do not have to rely on expensive, external urban markets.
  • 20 agro-forestry farmers integrated trees in their farming. Sensitisation on agro-forestry was carried out in groups.
  • Group members are given goats and, as a way of giving back, pass on a goat to a fellow farmer. 112 goats have now been passed on by group members.
  • 13 microfinance groups have been trained on the village banking concept. This is a concept wherein farmers mobilise their own savings and borrow money from their own savings at an interest. The project is now 2 years old and the accumulative amount of savings is K48,000,000.00 or US$13,714.
  • 9 people were trained in mushroom production and are now actively growing mushrooms. The market for mushrooms is lucrative and the challenge is on the farmers to be productive and seize the opportunity.

More farmers benefiting from goats during
the recent goat distribution in Mutakwa

OPAD has also been active in the promotion of mobile VCT and good nutrition, and has reached over 700 people with preventive and treatment messages. OPAD has in their HIV/AIDS project area a total number of 49 people who are HIV positive, who help facilitate this particular project component.

Financial partners have included the following: Harvest Help, World Bank, American Embassy, Zambia National AIDS Network, Plan Zambia, and AJWS (through ICA USA).

Case Studies

Kabongola Emelda is a 35 year-old woman from Kabongoka Village in the Muchenje area. Kabongola joined her group, called “Atulange,” in October 2003 and attended training on sustainable agriculture. Later on, she was selected as a Community Development Facilitator. Emeldah was interested in being a seed producer and was trained in seed production in 2004.

During the 2004/05 farming season, she grew seed maize and groundnuts. Unfortunately, the season was poor in terms of rainfall. She produced 7 x 50ks of maize seed and no groundnuts. Being a bad year, there was a shortage of food in the family. She multiplied the money through other business ventures and managed to buy food for about 30 people in the home. Emeldah tells us that the money assisted the 30 people who had nowhere to go for survival. She also managed to pay school fees for the school children.

This year, during the 2005/06 farming season, she has produced about 18 x 50kg bags of maize seed and 40kg of shelled groundnuts. She hopes to have a good market for her produce this year because she hosted a field day that was showing results of the seed that is produced locally. She says people were very happy about the performance of her seed (MMV600), an open pollinated.

Emeldah tells us that she considers seed production a more profitable venture than commercial crop production. Though she is a single mother and supporting a lot of people. including orphans, she will try by all means to work with her group members so that they also see the benefits of local seed production.

Josias Mulauli is a 60 year-old member of the Chitukukio Club. Josias is married with 8 children and joined the Club in 2003. Josias depend on crop production as his source of  livelihood. He has been growing maize Pool 16 and MMV 600 varieties, as well as winter vegetables.

Groundnuts Result Demonstration (Yields Comparison)

Josias tells us that, before joining the Club, he faced the following challenges: 1) poor information on good, sustainable farming practices; 2) lack of farm inputs and prolonged dry spells; and 3) factors like poor soils and poor crop harvest slowly rendered his land almost unproductive. In addition, when Josias first came to Kahale Village, he was allocated land on a slope unsuitable for cultivation as it encouraged soil erosion.Yet he had to cultivate it as it was the only land available to him. For the 2003/2004 farming season, Josias had food that lasted him only 5 months – through August. Since then, his family had lived without a reliable source of food. Until this current season, Josais has been practicing farming using pot holing, fertility pit beds, contour ploughing, crop rotation, and integrating green manure in his farming systems.

Through training, his yields increased from 15 bags x 50kgs last year to 32 bags x 50kgs this year, improving the number of meals his family eats each day. In Josias’ own words:

I learned sustainable agriculture technologies from my club training and convinced my family members so that we could try out some selected ones. We started applying these technologies in 2004 and in the season that followed, results started showing. I had to prepare my land early, adopt moisture retention practices, pot holing with animal manure, and a small portion of pit beds applied with organic materials. These methods reduced stress on my crops during dry spells, especially last year. My land has now been reclaimed for productivity when it was almost perceived as unproductive.”

Josias now has enough food to take him and his family through to the end of this year. This will allow him to save money from the sale of his winter vegetables from his garden to spend on medicines and other household basic needs.

Josias ended our conversation by reflecting: “I will never relent to pursue sustainable agriculture because in it lays food security for small scale farmers like me.”

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