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SLSAV is the Implementing Partner of SABI in North and NorthWest

SABI is a 4-year citizen-led accountable governance programme, which aims to contribute toward improved service delivery in health, education and social protection by strengthening accountable relationships between citizens, their elected representatives and state service providers.

To reach this aim, SABI has designed several initiatives which seek to change the behaviour of citizens in terms of engaging in accountable governance processes. For example, SABI gathers and shares evidence of citizens’ experiences of the services they use through the Citizen Perception Survey, and it facilitates action planning processes at community and ward level.

SABI believes that communities have the power to drive sustainable change themselves, and so SABI has primarily focussed on modelling and enablement interventions, to increase ownership and willingness of citizens to engage with state, and to sustain this positive behaviour.

But the SABI programme funding will end in June 2020, and so the programme will support communities to adapt and continue to engage the state without staff to directly support this process.

What will happen when the SABI programme comes to an end

As SABI will end the first phase of implementation in June 2020, SABI is seeking to sustain the changes made in the behaviour of citizens, their elected representatives and state service providers.

SABI believes that exiting communities after a successful intervention, changes the narrative where communities have been overlooked as agents of change and leaders of development. It’s an opportunity to hand over ownership to communities, increase power and boost their ability to build real change.

This does not mean that SABI expects citizens to continue to follow the exact processes that SABI has been modelling or continue compiling CPS data in the absence of a funded programme.

SABI do hope that citizens across the country will:

  • Continue to see themselves as the most important drivers of development
  • Draw on an instilled belief, that appropriately engaging the state can lead to improved services
  • Take ownership to change the imbalance of justice, power and leadership.

SABI do hope that WDCs and Local Councils across the country will:

  • Continue to recognise the role of citizens as important drivers of development, ask for their feedback on services and continue to respond to citizens’ concerns
  • Draw on an instilled belief, that appropriately engaging with citizens can lead to improved service
  • Take ownership to change the imbalance of justice, power and leadership

SABI knows that these hopes will be dependent on many things, including the ability, motivations and opportunities available to citizens, WDCs and local councils. From April 2019, SABI intends to support these structures to self-assess their own ability to meet these expectations when the programme will end.

In order to facilitate this self-assessment process, communities, WDCs and local councils will need to identify the criteria against which they will assess their abilities. SLSAV’s role as an implementing partner of SABI in the North and NorthWest is to support these structures to identify the criteria against which they will assess themselves, using an appropriate tool.

SABI Key Messages for Exit Strategy Meetings

Six headline messages that should be at the forefront of all SABI communications.

  1. SABI believes communities have the power to drive sustainable change themselves. We work in communities to provide support, promote inclusion, build ownership, and inspire leadership in addressing the most urgent issues in health, education and social protection.
  2. SABI believes WDCs and Local Councils are key actors in accountable governance processes, and aims to support these structures to overcome the barriers they face so that they can adequately represent their constituents and bring about improvements to services.
  3. SABI works to ensure the inclusion of everyone in development irrespective of their status, sex and age. SABI’s community engagement approach actively supports communities to follow and promote practices that embody gender equality and social inclusion.
  4. The SABI programme will end in June 2020, with work at community/WDC/LC level planned to end in March 2020 at the latest.
  5. SABI wants to ensure that the community/WDC/LC we have worked with are able to continue the accountable governance processes after SABI exits. To ensure this, we want communities/WDCs/LCs to identify criteria to assess themselves as to whether they will be able to continue engaging in accountable governance without direct support from SABI.
  6. SABI is a national programme. The criteria identified by all communities/WDCs/LCs that we work with will be compiled to create a final list which will be used consistently across the country. We will share the final list with the community/WDC/LC in May 2019. There will be a separate list for communities, a separate list for WDCs and a separate list for LCs.
  7. SABI will support communities/WDCs/LCs to assess themselves every 3 months over the next year, to support them to meet all of the criteria before the programme exits. At the final assessment, if the community/WDC/LC meets all of the criteria, they will ‘graduate’ from the SABI programme and we will hold a ceremony to recognise their achievements, and popularise this over national media.

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