New Internationalist

Ideas For Action

Issue 152

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IDEAS FOR ACTION

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Overseas Development Network, Inc.
P.O. Box 1430
Cambridge, Ma. 02238
(617) 868-3002

AIMS
To sensitize college students to the possibilities and problems of development by establishing a partnership program between American College affiliates and self-help projects in developing countries.

To educate ourselves and our communities about development.

To locate projects and programs in the Third World where college students and others can contribute time and skills.

METHODS
By remaining a student-run organization. By establishing affiliates on college campuses across the country. By linking affiliates with grassroots development projects seeking financial backing.

By sponsoring symposia on development.

By publishing anthologies of development literature geared to students.

By compiling a guide to development intern-ships and a clearinghouse of information on development opportunities.

SUCCESSES
Receipt of grant from Hewlett Foundation.

Establishment of over thirty chapters.

Publication of internships guide and development education package.

Ability of affiliates to organize meaningful events and projects.

FAILURES
Difficulties in establishing viable affiliates and in recruiting volunteer staff for headquarters. Problems in raising funds from non-grant sources.

FUTURE PLANS
To increase number of campus affiliates.

To expand roster of projects to include not only India and Bangladesh, but also other countries in Asia and Latin America.

HELP NEEDED
You could:

  • organize a chapter on your campus or alma mater;
  • volunteer at our headquarters;
  • send information about grassroots development initiatives and internship opportunities;
  • provide support by becoming an associate
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Adult Literacy Organization of Zimbabwe
P.O. Box 4480
HARARE, Zimbabwe
Tel: 704890

AIMS
To eradicate illiteracy in Zimbabwe.

To assist the social, economic, cultural, political and intellectual development of literacy students.

To assist the professional development of literacy teachers. 

METHODS
We work hard to promote literacy and to provide support services to a national network of literacy programmes. Literacy programmes are organized by local groups, such as local government, churches, women’s clubs and commercial firms. We support these programmes by:

  • Training literacy teachers;
  • Supervising programmes;
  • Developing course material, a Teacher’s Journal and follow-on readers in Shona, Ndebele and English;
  • Printing and distributing literacy materials. We also actively support the Mass Literacy Campaign of the government. 

SUCCESSES
Over 20 years, despite difficult conditions, our work has greatly expanded and we have successfully incorporated new methods and approaches to functional literacy. At present there are over 400 ALOZ trained teachers working with 20,000 literacy students throughout Zimbabwe.

The majority of literacy students, literacy teachers and ALOZ staff are women and a significant contribution has been made to the professional development of Zimbabwe women.

FAILURES
In the past we failed to meet the demand for reading materials because of limited printing facilities. Due to financial constraints, we have sometimes failed to recruit and retain suitably qualified and experienced staff.

FUTURE PLANS
In 1984 we drew up a Five Year Plan for October 1984 to September 1989. The plan outlines our on-going functions and includes suggestions for organizational development.

HELP NEEDED
We are not able to readily obtain foreign exchange for purchase of magazine subscriptions and resource books. We welcome adult education and English literacy publications plus resource information on agriculture, nutrition, health, child care, management skills and small-scale income-generating projects.

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African Development Institute
11 Clover Close
London Eli 4QF
England
Tel: 01-558 2606

AIMS
To provide training in the practical skills of mixed farming covering the management of cattle, sheep, pigs, goats and poultry by attaching Africans intending to become small-holders or large scale producers in Africa to UK farms and to train instructors for same. To improve food production by the application of methods and ideas from the North.

METHODS
A one year full-time course in practical mixed farming and a series of short courses of six-monthly duration in various specific skills e.g. poultry farming, pig farming are available to candidates. On payment of token fees, trainees will receive moderate weekly allowances and free lodging (and initial clothing) for the duration of the training period on farm.

SUCCESSES
Similar courses have been run successfully in the UK for trainees from UK., Canada, and the USA. We have succeeded in forming the Institute to train Africans for the war on hunger, starvation and famine on the continent and to direct aid and assistance to such long-term solutions to the food problem. Most African immigrants in UK., Europe, and the USA, interviewed believe the success of the scheme would give the right training for home going.

FAILURES
We have not been able to convince potential trainees that farming is extremely hard work and can be both unpleasant and boring and that it calls for a very high standard of self-service, sacrifice and discipline. We are yet to fill most of our top posts e.g. Patron, Vice President etc.

FUTURE PLANS
In the long-term, we hope to be in the position to send trained instructors to Africa to set up pilot schemes/farms where most or all of the local training would take place. We wish to use existing conventional methods to raise funds for the purpose of assisting trainees from exceptionally poor backgrounds.

HELP NEEDED
We need to involve friends who will give us both publicity and practical support. Volunteers for the purposes of arranging farm vacancies, organising fund-raising etc. are needed. Selections and nominations for patronage would be most welcome particularly from successful farmers.

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