More than 300 people, including partners, policy makers, researchers, OVC practitioners and beneficiaries, attended the SCORE project National Closure Event to celebrate seven years of achievements
April 2, 2018 — The numbers are astonishing. The initial goal was to reduce vulnerability of 25,000 households in 35 districts in Uganda, but in the last seven years the Sustainable Comprehensive Responses for Vulnerable Children and their Families (SCORE) project reached 34,779 vulnerable children households and at least 200,000 individuals. Funded by USAID thanks to a grant of more than US$38 million, SCORE was implemented by a consortium led by AVSI Foundation together with partners: CARE, TPO and FHI360.
“The SCORE project assisted more than 34,000 households to move from vulnerability to resilience, and the journey towards resilience was exciting,” celebrated Massimo Zucca, on behalf of AVSI Foundation Country Representative, John Makoha during the SCORE final event on March 20, 2018 “SCORE encouraged change in all actors. It offered a range of options, which tested people’s free will to grow. And seven years later, we see long lasting change and we hear real stories of people managing their future.”
More than 300 people, including partners, policy makers, researchers, OVC practitioners and beneficiaries, attended the SCORE project National Closure Event. The event focused on presenting key program successes, challenges and lessons learned that will help the global OVC community. Through the Socio-Economic Strengthening element of the project, for example, the household average income jumped from US$ 12 to US$ 39 per month, while unemployment rate was reduced from 15% to 1%.
“SCORE just demonstrated that resilience can indeed be achieved by the poorest and most vulnerable households,” said Colette Marcellin, Deputy Head of Mission, US Embassy in Uganda. “ I thank AVSI Foundation together with its consortium partners and local economic partners for making change in the lives of children in more than 34,000 families.”
Some of the children mentioned by Mrs. Marcellin were also at the event. With microphones and musical instruments in hand, some of the kids attending Child Heroes Early Childhood Group shared with the audience traditional Ugandan songs. Thanks to SCORE, they regularly attend the early childhood group to play and learn while their caregivers are supported with apprenticeship skills, have joined savings groups and have received training in parenting and life skills. In total, with the SCORE Family Strengthening element, 9,970 individuals and 8,329 households participated in life skills programs while almost 2,000 children joined a community playgroup.
“SCORE represented a crucial experience for AVSI, as it embodied, on a large scale, the AVSI experience and method,” said AVSI Secretary General Giampaolo Silvestri. “Over 34,000 households were encouraged to take the driver’s seat in determining their destiny, while at least 50 implementing partners and over 200 staff are spurred to go past checklists and to use their sense of judgment to devise strategies to facilitate the transition of beneficiaries out of vulnerability.”
Over the next seven year, AVSI will continue testing it's unique Graduation Approach in Uganda on another project. To improve food and nutrition security and self-reliance among extremely poor households in the Kamwenge refugee settlement and host communities, the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) Office of Food for Peace (FFP) awarded AVSI a $36,700,000 cooperative agreement to implement, in consortium with Trickle Up and IMPAQ International, the Graduating to Resilience project. AVSI Consortium will work with 13,200 households that are economically active but chronically unable to meet their basic needs without some assistance. Half of the households will be from the host district and the other half will be from the refugee community.