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Building Trusted Partnerships for Healthy and Resilient Communities

The health legacy project is implemented in five African countries; Burundi, Sierra Leone and South Sudan, Nigeria and Kenya. By August 2019 the project had completed two years of implementation. The project addresses the issue of gender justice, promotes equitable social norms and institutions, and improves accountability by building the agency of citizens. Evidence has shown the project to have positive impacts on lives of our beneficiaries and their communities. This includes improved resilience of families and communities, especially those in fragile and resource-challenged settings. They are better prepared in terms of ability to anticipate, identify, and respond to health risks.

Christian Aid Launches Nationwide Youth Development Fund

Christian Aid Nigeria has provided £30,000 as seed grants to six youth led/focused organisations across the six geo-political zones of Nigeria. Working in partnership with leading youth Non-Governmental Organizations, Connected Development (CODE) and YouthHub Africa, through and innovative fund approach, a nationwide Youth Challenge Fund was launched to address the marginalization of young people in governance structures by providing young people with the opportunity to deliver innovative solutions to identified challenges within their communities.  The project seeks to increase youth participation in community development and ensure youth become partners and leaders in development — where they are charged with creating a sustainable change that is measurable in their community.  Speaking during the launch, Christian Aid Nigeria’s Country Director, Charles Usie said: “The fund is in recognition of the immense capacity of young people to address some of the growing developmental challenges across communities in Nigeria, if given the opportunity and required resources. We have therefore put this in place as part of our mandate to end poverty in Nigeria.”  According to the Chief Executive of CODE, Hamzat Lawal, the government must understand the growing importance and potential of young people and consider their contribution to nation building. Lawal called for increased financing, education and technical support for Nigerian youth as this can greatly impact on the future of the country. He also urged the Federal Government to fulfil its obligation to the youth by increasing youth participation on all policies that affect young people. Through funding from Christian Aid, CODE will sub-grant the selected organisations with a total of Thirty thousand pounds for their innovation to solve some of the difficult challenges limiting young people. While many projects of this nature seek to work with young people in the urban areas, the project will work with youths who are typically marginalised, excluded and who otherwise would have limited access to participation. CODE’s project lead, Lucy James, stated that young people have some of the most promising solutions to contemporary problems and we hope to learn from this, especially from those in the grassroots who have the capacity to act, utilizing their skills and ability to improve their own lives. The Sub-grantee Organisations: Foundation for Equitable and Sustainable Human Advancement (FESHA) is a youth led disability inclusion organization focusing on Health, Advocacy, and economic empowerment. It seeks to empower people living with disabilities with information on the provisions of the law, rights and obligations of disabled persons as citizens. Justice Development and Peace Caritas [JDPC] Nnewi is a Faith Based Organization that has Youth Empowerment and Development as one of the core thematic areas of its operation. It aims to strengthen participation of youths in Government policy implementation for Communal Development and Peace Building. Women and children in support of community development initiative (WOCCI-Nig) is a national Non-Governmental Organization that seeks to provide community based programs that provide access to education, health, emotional and psychosocial services, and economic opportunities to vulnerable individuals and households. Increased resilience and sustainable livelihood of youths within project communities Hope For Family Development Initiative (HFDI) is an initiative that seeks to improve the lives of marginalized and vulnerable groups. HFDI believes that marginalized and vulnerable groups are faced with unique issues and challenges which require empowerment, skills acquisition training and better community understanding for them to cope with their exceedingly difficult conditions. Spotlight for Transparency and Accountability Initiative levitates standard of transparency and accountability in government (subnational governments) through citizen participation in governance. This project seeks to empower young people across 17 LGAs in Yobe State through multidimensional Capacity building on how to hold government to account for their spending using digital technology and improve service delivery on Health, Education and WASH Access to Learning and School (ATLAS) Initiative is creating a platform called Enriching Lives Through Education (ELiTE) to empower young girls and boys in Ikorodu LGA, aged 17-25 with essential life skills, functional skills and access to platforms for learning - ensuring access to inclusive and equitable quality education.

Press release: changing the course of under-five mortality in Nigeria

Our Partnership for Improved Child Health (PICH) project in Benue State, Nigeria, closed in August 2019. Read our press release to find out what we achieved and how communities have adapted. Every year, hundreds of thousands of children under the age of five years in Nigeria do not live up to their fifth birthday due to preventable childhood illnesses such as malaria, pneumonia, diarrhoea and severe acute malnutrition. Most under-five death occurs in remote, hard to reach communities where caregivers are faced with physical, social and financial barriers to access health services. Christian Aid , through this project, has empowered communities to take ownership of their own health by improving knowledge and health-seeking behaviour, giving hope in despair, and saving children under five who face imminent death due to barriers of access to and uptake of quality health services.  This project was funded by Christian Aid supporters and UK Aid Match from the UK government. 

CAAGI information sheet

Collective Action for Adolescent Girls Initiative (CAAGI) is a Christian Aid funded programme that aims to improve significantly the choices and opportunities available for adolescent girls in Northern Nigeria to live productive and meaningful lives. It seeks to change individual and societal behaviours, attitudes and perceptions that hamper the opportunities of girls, using the strong influence of religion through religious leaders as enablers to facilitate this change. It is focused on addressing practices around early marriage, lack of access to education and economic empowerment for adolescent girls.

Key findings: religion and time of marriage

'Religion and time of marriage: the role of faith leaders in advancing the cause of adolescent girls - key findings' is a study, which listened to community members, local leaders, faith leaders, and adolescent girls in three areas of Kaduna state. It aims to find answers to four critical questions that revolved around the influence faith leaders have on: their congregations and community members governmental actors adolescent girls and other faith leaders In some regions in Northern Nigeria, the incidence of girl-child marriage is as high as 87%, leaving a high proportion of adolescent girls in the region with very limited choices and opportunities to reach their full potential (AfriDevInfo, 2016). Early marriage is highly prevalent in Northern Nigeria. The significance of religion in Nigeria and the lack of law enforcement on early marriage places religious institutions and leaders in a privileged position to exercise influence on eradicating the practice. In this context, Christian Aid - as part of the Collective Action for Adolescent Girls Initiative (CAAGI) project - commissioned a study that explored how Muslim and Christian faith leaders can advance the cause of adolescent girls in their timing of marriage. CAAGI seeks to improve significantly the choices and opportunities for adolescent girls in Kaduna state to live productive and meaningful lives.

Religion and time of marriage: the role of faith leaders

Adolescent Girls (AGs) in Northern Nigeria have very limited choices and opportunities to reach their full potential. Cultural and religious socialisations have resulted in girls feeling isolated and powerless and therefore conforming to cultural pressures to marry early. Although 43% of girls in Nigeria are married before 18, in the North West, child marriage prevalence is as high as 76%. The centrality of religion in Nigeria enables religious institutions and leaders to exercise considerable influence regarding the timing of marriage of adolescent girls. The study is a cross-sectional and mixed method study about the roles of faith leaders (FLs) in advancing the cause of adolescent girls regarding timing of marriage. This question was explored from four complementary perspectives: influence in congregations/community members influence in governmental actors influence in adolescent girls and influence in other faith leaders

Improving the choices and opportunities for adolescent girls

This toolkit was designed as a guide for religious leaders of both Christian and Islamic faiths in Nigeria as they address the challenges faced by adolescent girls on the issues of early marriage, education, reproductive health services and economic empowerment. It is an initiative of Christian Aid Nigeria, working in partnership with Gender Awareness Trust (GAT) and Development and Peace Initiative (DPI) as part of the Collective Action for Adolescent Girls Initiative (CAAGI). CAAGI seeks to improve the choices and opportunities available to adolescent girls in Northern Nigeria to enable them reach their full potential. The toolkit will guide faith leaders as they provide training and share messages/sermons on the accurate Christian and Islamic perspectives on issues of early marriage, education, reproductive health and economic empowerment of adolescent girls.

Case study - partnership with Vitamins Angel Alliance (SCHH)

Through the Strengthening Community Health and HIV Response (SCHH) project, Christian Aid works in partnership with Vitamin Angels Alliance to provide Vitamin A supplements and deworming (VASD) to Nigerian children under the age of 5. A production of the Community Health and HIV (CHH) Team at Christian Aid.

Masculinity and Religion in Nigeria: findings from qualitative research

This study on religion and masculinity in Nigeria was conducted seeks to establish the impact of religious beliefs on masculinity amongst Christians and Muslims, paying particular attention to selected states (Enugu, Kaduna, Lagos and FCT).