Community development education proves the power of advocacy
A village in Rakhine – a 2-hour drive from the state capital, Sittwe – is one of many villages struggling with poor infrastructure, especially during the rainy season, impacting trade, access to health care, children’s education and more.
Through advocacy training and the initiation of road building via our CDE work, for this village, the struggle is over. Villagers have gained the skills and confidence needed to approach the local government for financial support.
The process has been led by a young, female CDE facilitator and has resulted in the government providing rocks and other materials to build proper roads in the entire village. The government was impressed with the development happening in the village and, therefore, willing to support further development projects.
From now on, 1 in every 10 families will have a child graduating from high school, and people (university students and workers) are able to travel all the way to Sittwe by motorbike. The new roads will also make it possible to transport produce and fish to markets outside of the village, which will eventually have a positive impact on the local economy.
The community previously felt they didn’t have any voice or confidence, so they didn’t ask the government for anything. After advocacy training and community-based project planning and implementation, the villagers have changed their mindsets and are no longer hesitant or scared to approach the local authorities for financial support.