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Oxfam developed a multi-sector Coping Strategy Index (mCSI) to provide the humanitarian community in Afghanistan with a tool to assess and monitor the impact of interventions - especially multi-purpose cash grants - with data collected from Nangarhar, Herat, Kunduz, Kandahar and Kabul provinces. The project was funded by EU humanitarian aid and Oxfam.
This report explains how the index was developed and tested in the field to verify its validity as a proxy of overall household stress. Also available to download is an introduction to the methodology.
In Afghanistan, there are separate schools for girls and boys and it is estimated that only 16% of schools are for girls. Many rural and displaced girls are unable to attend school regularly. There are no specific menstrual hygiene management (MHM) policies; however, gender-separated toilets are the norm and girls' washrooms have beenincorporated into designs. O&M remains a huge problem. Poor security complicates matters.
Huge numbers of people are returning to Afghanistan - more than two million since 2015 - while the country is still highly fragile, with ongoing fighting and internal displacement in many areas and high levels of poverty. Oxfam's field research in Herat, Kabul, Kunduz and Nangarhar finds that for as long as these conditions do not improve, a safe and dignified return cannot be guaranteed, and forced returns remain irresponsible. With more people returning on a daily basis, tensions are likely to grow and pressure on scarce resources will increase, exacerbating inequalities in this unstable and fragile country. Sending Afghans back to volatile areas will likely result only in more displacement and fragility.
This evaluation is presented as part of the Effectiveness Review Series 2014/15, randomly selected for review under the citizen voice thematic area. This report documents the findings of a qualitative impact evaluation, carried out in December 2014. The evaluation used process tracing to assess the effectiveness of the "National Solidarity Programme III" in Afghanistan. The National Solidarity Programme III (NSP III) was launched in 2003 by the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD). The main objective of the programme was "'to build, strengthen and maintain community development councils (CDCs) as effective institutions for local governance and socio- economic development"'. Oxfam GB was a Facilitating Partner, helping to establish and build the capacity of CDCs to manage local development.
Read more about Oxfam's Effectiveness Reviews.
'My Rights, My Voice' (MRMV) is a multi-country programme implemented by Oxfam GB, Oxfam Novib, Oxfam Québec and their partners with the aim of engaging marginalized children and youth in their rights to health and education services. The programme has been implemented in eight countries: Afghanistan, Georgia, Mali, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Tanzania and Vietnam.
This evaluation aimed to systematically analyse the actual outcomes of the programme and its underlying working mechanisms against the proposed outcomes and MRMV's theory of change.
Oxfam's management response to the evaluation report is included as a separate document.
Open Society Foundations;
During the early years of the United States' involvement in Afghanistan, the U.S. military was killing too many civilians and depriving too many others of basic rights and liberties. By 2008, nearly 40 percent of civilian deaths in Afghanistan resulted from U.S. military operations.
The level of "civilian harm"—the military's term for killing innocent civilians and causing major political, social, and economic disruption—was adversely impacting the United States' efforts to defeat the Taliban and weakening the legitimacy of the U.S. and Afghan governments.
The report, The Strategic Costs of Civilian Harm: Applying Lessons from Afghanistan to Current and Future Conflicts, examines how the U.S. military learned from its early mistakes in Afghanistan and applied lessons to mitigate civilian harm. In fact, starting in 2009, the U.S. military recognized its mistakes and started to understand the high strategic cost of civilian harm. The military's changes led to a significant reduction in civilian deaths during the next few years.
The report argues that the United States should develop a Uniform Policy on Civilian Protection. The new standards would apply to all U.S. military operations in current and future conflicts and, hopefully, better protect civilians caught in conflict.
As Afghanistan now faces an uncertain political and security environment following the drawdown of ISAF troops at the end of 2014, the potential for a worsening narcotrafficking threat is great. The report states that the potential for deterioration "underscores the imperative need for Russian and U.S. policymakers to find the political will to resume and perhaps even increase cooperation despite ongoing differences on other issues. Together with regional partners and international organizations, renewed Russian-U.S. cooperation presents the best hope for a brighter future."
Council on Foreign Relations;
According to this new interactive guide, "as the international combat mission in Afghanistan closes, the Taliban threatens to destabilize the region, harbor terrorist groups with global ambitions, and set back human rights and economic development in the areas where it prevails." The infoguide includes an overview video featuring leading experts, a timeline tracing the Taliban's evolution, infographics, an interactive map, and teaching tips for educators.
Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC);
This publication shares and analyses people's sense of threats and safety through the lens of human security. Spanning six regions of the world, it presents the accounts of people living in Afghanistan, the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Zimbabwe, Ukraine, Mexico, and the Philippines. As a people-centred approach to understanding threats to people's livelihoods, safety and dignity, human security is useful as both an analytical tool and an operational approach for addressing socio-political problems.
United States Institute of Peace;
Humanitarian, development, and oversight organizations in Afghanistan are finding it progressively more difficult to access development and reconstruction project sites in many areas of the country due to deteriorating security conditions. As a result of the volatile security environment in Afghanistan and other conflict areas, humanitarian and development organizations are increasingly turning to remote management and monitoring approaches in order to continue providing assistance while safeguarding the security of their personnel.
The symposium was held on February 12, 2014, at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, DC.
This report describes the symposium discussions and the major themes that emerged from those discussions, and includes three appendices.
United States Institute of Peace;
Discussing DDR in Afghanistan mightseem incongruous as fighting rages between government forces and a potent insurgency. Indeed, with international forces drawing down and presidential electionsscheduled for April introducing further uncertainty, there are more Afghans arming than disarming.
This may change, however.While a deal with the Taliban currently appearsremote, were the new government to succeed in forging one, itssustainability would hinge on the reintegration of tens of thousands of fighters. If international funding for the Afghan National Security Forces(ANSF) declines, those soldiers and police laid off would need to find alternative livelihoods—no small challenge given the state of the economy. Reduced international funding toward Afghan security spending after 2014 could also leave thousands of members of the Afghan Public Protection Force (APPF) and private security companiesjobless. In these scenarios,DDR would again become a p
As Afghanistan prepares for presidential elections and the withdrawal of international forces, insecurity continues to spread across the country, with a devastating impact on civilians. The role of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) in advancing human rights, supporting humanitarian access and promoting peace and reconciliation efforts must be strengthened - particularly as it relates to the agenda on women, peace and security in Afghanistan. It is critical that the significant gains that have been made in the last decade are not lost.
This briefing outlines the key concerns of civil society organizations in Afghanistan and puts forward suggested action for the consideration of UN Security Council members.