Background and objectives
The main objective of this project is to assist selected areas in Khartoum state, through a bottom-up approach and grassroots institutional set-up, aiming at improving the management capacities of local institutions for poverty alleviation. The project objectives are to build confidence between all urban actors through the establishment of a consultation organizational framework; achieve an integrated programme approach and increased individual and institutional capacity in poverty alleviation; develop the urban informal sector through income generating activities; secure land tenure to disadvantaged groups in camps/squatted areas to provide a secure environment for investment; and develop project management tools through baseline data, key indicators and best practices.
A project advisory committee has been established; five targeted municipal areas were selected representing the old urban core, the informal areas and camps housing internally displaced persons; and, local project committees, municipal committees, a decision-making process and coordination mechanisms have been established. The project produced inter-sectoral policy guidelines and a strategic interventions framework for poverty alleviation in 2001; strengthened the Social Development Foundation to operate as a poverty alleviation coordination mechanism produced a poverty alleviation plan of action and will produce a manual of techniques and practices for poverty alleviation.
Management and operational systems are organized and function effectively. Since July 1999, the project has been managed and implemented by national professionals. The project is legalising the local development committees into registered CBOs. Furthrmore, planning and coordination committees have been established as poverty-focussed bodies at the locality level. Innovative credit mechanisms have been established and tested through the management of a US$ 1,000,000 revolving fund where Islamic credit schemes are being explored (particularly addressing inflation). Despite operating in the poorest IDP areas, the loan recovery rate has increased from 51 per cent in 1999 to 67 per cent in 2000. Recovery rate is to be further improved by strengthening the capacities of community institutions and individual beneficiaries. Approximately 1,200 persons from all categories of the urban poor are receiving skills development training. Building materials quality and productivity and construction technologies are being improved in the informal construction sector. The issue of provision of basic human needs, particularly water has been given priority as an important approach to poverty reduction. Accordingly the project has directly assisted 1443 households in five settlements (haras) through the installation/rehabilitation of water facilities and establishment of water networks on cost recovery basis. The sustainable livelihood initiative for IDPs in As Salam Camp and Dar As Salam resettlement has been incorporated in the project. During 2001, the project team will further build the capcity of the SDF and hand-over activities to the counterparts. Through an SPPD, UN-Habitat will prepare a funding strategy, project documents and identify potential local, bilateral and regional sources for funding.