Culture in Development

 Employing the Strengths Based Approach, the GYDI program has some interventions aligned to culture in development. There are “Ndau” cultural practices and beliefs that go a long way in curbing gender based violence and as such the program is strengthening the communities to uphold these.Traditionally, the Ndau people had traditional meeting points called ‘Bandlas.’
These were forums were the elderly would interface with young people to discuss issues of life. Such platforms would be used to counsel and advice the young as well as train them on livelihoods life skills. The GYDI program is working on reviving these Bandlas in anticipation that the counsel and advice that young people gain from these meetings would help lower cases on domestic violence, discrimination of marginalised groups like persons with disabilities and women. Drivers of violence like substance and drug abuse will also be dealt with at these meetings. To date, through the program’s efforts works on 5 Bandlas are currently underway and by end of July 2013 all the 10 villages under this program would have constructed these traditional meeting points.
 
Village Savings and Lending
 
The program introduced the Village Savings and Lending (VSL) concept so as to economically strengthen marginalised people. It is anticipated that with women being economically active and also contributing to the household basket, cases of discrimination on women will decline. Currently there are 24 actively saving groups and the total number of participants under these groups is 149 members. 125 of these are women of all ages with 24 being men. The VSL concept will thus empower women when they start venturing into meaningful income generating projects with money borrowed from and distributed through savings and lending.
 
Capacity building
 
To fulfil its mandate of appropriate service provision to marginalised people and groups the GYDI program has capacitated duty bearers including traditional leaders and Community Volunteers. Among other key capacity building sessions they have participated, duty bearers were capacitated in the provisions of the Domestic Violence Act, the Disabled Person Act, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Culture in Development and Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health. In a bid to build the capacity of civil society members in service provision the program has also capacitated Community Volunteers in a number of areas that include, Counseling, Advocacy, community legal facilitation,  Monitoring and Evaluation. 

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