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Transition Initiatives for Stabilization + (TIS+)

traditional dance
Traditional dance at a USAID funded cultural event
Said Mohamed Hassan/USAID

OVERVIEW

The TIS+ activity aims to increase Somalia’s stability through participatory processes that promote good governance and community cohesion.  Given the fragile nature of the political and security gains made over the last few years in Somalia, TIS+ will maintain a continued focus on quick impact stabilization activities at the district and community levels, with a focus on targeted areas in the newly emerging states.  At the same time, TIS+ will support Somalia’s goal of moving from crisis response and stabilization to medium and longer-term development by facilitating joint planning between community, government and private sector actors on shared goals.

TIS+ prioritizes engagement with government and communities within the Jubbaland State of Somalia, Southwest State of Somalia, Benadir Regional Authority, and the Sool and Sanaag regions.  The TIS+ activities  focus on increasing stability in the country by improving the government’s capacity for service delivery and demonstrating good governance processes, thereby improving citizen confidence in government and reducing the appeal of violent extremism.

ACTIVITY AREAS

TIS+ blends technical assistance and infrastructure development in communities throughout Somalia to address their short-term priorities and needs.  In coordination with government counterparts and community members, TIS+ staff and facilitators work collectively to select and prioritize stability projects.  The construction of roads, government buildings, parks, or installation of solar lights are some examples of projects that community members will chose.  The projects are then implemented, monitored and evaluated together with the government and other stakeholders.

In targeted areas, TIS+ undertakes activities intended to build an enabling environment for stabilization, to overcome local challenges to implementation, and to foster increased, broad-based participation in these community-centric activities.  Activities will be developed with a sound understanding of the present conflict drivers, resiliencies, and important unresolved grievances in a community, as understood prior to and through the assessment phase. 

USAID supports the restoration of Somali dialogue, arts, culture, and sports activities to their original prominence in Somali society. These activities, which promote social cohesion and peace in communities, are particularly important for engaging vulnerable populations who have endured trauma and social and political exclusion. USAID supported the second annual Mogadishu Book Festival during FY2016, the most high profile cultural event held in Somalia over the last twelve months. The fair attracted 2,000 people a day, and trended on Twitter in East Africa with over 3 million impressions of #MBF2016. 

USAID also supported the Somali Olympic Committee and the National Basketball Federation in hosting the first women’s national basketball tournament in 26 years from December 21-26, 2016 in the Puntland capital of Garowe. The tournament attracted an estimated 2,500 spectators with hundreds of thousands or perhaps even millions of Somalis following the games through mainstream and social media. Afterwards, the Olympic Committee selected the national team members for the Emirates Games this year.

For TIS+, integrating gender and addressing equality across the program in a holistic manner is essential to the program.  However, it is not only about adding a woman’s component and increasing women’s participation into an existing activity.  Rather, it is about how experience, knowledge, and interests of women and men can actually affect programmatic objectives and anticipated results.  The TIS+ team supports the empowerment of women and girls through gender-specific targeted interventions, while at the same time addressing gender equality concerns in the development, planning, and implementation of all project activities.

ACTIVITY IMPACT

Thus far, TIS+ accomplishments include:

  • Supported the Jubbaland State of Somalia and Southwest State of Somalia to carry out district-based stability assessments;
  • Facilitated community consensus planning sessions in the newly recovered areas of Afmadow, Baardhere, Barawe, Dinsor, and Wanleweyne and commenced implementation of up to $3.3 million in community prioritized small-scale infrastructure projects (e.g. airstrips, community centers, and roads);
  • Supported municipalities in Mogadishu, Kismayo, Las Anod and Erigavo to develop through community consultation “bridging plans” to direct new USAID investments (up to $5 million) and to foster public-private partnerships and community contributions for key public infrastructure projects;
  • Supported the Jubbaland State of Somalia and Southwest State of Somalia in organizing consultative forums with over 50 women from across each state; and
  • Contributed to the Ministry of Interior and Federal Affairs’ consultations and launch of the national Wadajir Framework for Local Governance, subsequently incorporated as a signature program in the National Development Plan.

Last updated: February 17, 2017

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