Strategic plan 2015-2019

Material Information

Strategic plan 2015-2019
SOS Sahel Sudan
Place of Publication:
SOS Sahel Sudan
Publication Date:
Physical Description:
volume ; 31 cm


Subjects / Keywords:
SOS Sahel (Organization : London, England) ( LCNAF )
SOS Sahel International UK
SOS Sahel Sudan
Temporal Coverage:
2015 - 2019
Spatial Coverage:
Africa -- Sudan
Africa -- South Sudan
15 x 32
8 x 30


General Note:
At head of title: SOS Sahel Sudan
General Note:
SOS Sahel Sudan was a component NGO of SOS Sahel International UK

Record Information

Source Institution:
SOAS University of London
Holding Location:
SOAS, University of London
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1. The Strategic Planning Process

The previous five-year strategic plan for SOS Sahel Sudan covered the period up to 31
December 2014. Therefore, the Executive Committee has decided to develop a new five-
year strategic plan to be ready for implementation as from January 2015. The process was
developed and agreed upon with the SOS Sahel Sudan strategic management team, and
guided by Terms of Reference. The ToR were developed for external facilitation of the
strategic planning process, and to ensure adherence to SOS Sahel Sudan’s values:
participatory and cross-learning and to approaches that recognise the important role of
communities in decision making, implementation and monitoring; engagement of women
and youth on decisions affecting their lives; fostering of effective partnerships with other
actors; and knowledge production and sharing.

The strategic planning process included the following tasks, to assure a participatory
process and ownership of the strategic planning process and product by SOS Sahel and its
target communities and stakeholders:

e Desk research and writing of an up-to-date paper on contextual realities of Sudan

e Review of the previous strategic plan and of performance and evaluation reports
and other relevant documents;

e Interviewing of key informants, particularly the strategic management team of SOS
Sahel Sudan and the staff leading the programmes at state and community level;

e Strategic planning workshops, attended by the leaders of the SOS Sahel Sudan board
of directors, by staff from different Sudanese regions, and by representatives from
donor and partner organisations;

e Development of drafts, obtaining inputs and comments from the SOS Sahel Sudan
strategic management team, and incorporating these into the production of the final
strategic plan document.

The process was well informed by knowledge and data available from different sources on
the Sudanese context. There was also rich information and knowledge held by SOS Sahel
Sudan regarding its areas of programme operation. The contextual analysis was therefore
well informed by the following secondary data sources:

e SOS Sahel Sudan’s Executive Committee, advisory board members, and staff, and
knowledge and opinions generated from various consultation meetings and
workshops with partner organisations and target populations;

e Research papers by academics and consultants’ reports on conflicts, poverty
profiles, vulnerability surveys, and similar;

Reports from UNDP, UN Women, and other UN agencies, on the MDGs, gender
inequality, country analysis, and humanitarian agency situation reports (e.g. from

National Government policies and priorities (including Interim Poverty Reduction
Strategy Papers);

Donor funding trends and priorities, and donor country strategy papers.

The detailed methodology included but was not limited to the following:

Review of the previous strategic plan document: its relevance to context,
applicability, achievements, and lessons learned;

Context analysis: scanning of the external environment of SOS Sahel Sudan (both
nationally and in programme areas) including updates on context, changes and
trends, enabling and disabling factors in the environment for SOS Sahel Sudan,
opportunities and threats, and challenges for the future;

Review of SOS Sahel Sudan’s capacities, including both strengths and weaknesses:
its governance system and institutional set-up, social accountability systems,
approaches to participation, and professionalism;

Interviews and discussions with key SOS Sahel Sudan Board members, staff, and
representatives of key stakeholders, including a series of workshops and group
discussions for shared analysis, capacity review, and decisions on strategic issues
and choices, and the development of an agreed strategic framework.

2. Strategic Analysis: External Environment

2.1 Strategic analysis process

The strategic planning process included analysis of the Sudanese context and in particular
of the regions where SOS Sahel Sudan has been operational over the period of the previous
five-year strategic plan. This was to better understand the contextual realities and trends
and to help identify the issues, challenges, and opportunities facing poor and
disadvantaged women and men within the country and to determine what SOS Sahel Sudan
could potentially do to respond to these challenges.

An analytical review document was prepared and discussed in depth, distilling key external
issues faced by specific groups of poor and disadvantaged communities, that could
potentially be addressed by SOS Sahel Sudan and its partnerships (existing or potential).
This external context analysis established the key conflict, vulnerability, and poverty
drivers facing poor and disadvantaged women and men and their communities in Sudan.

The analysis concluded that the most vulnerable and most disadvantaged are the rural
people in conflict areas. Besides insecurity, they suffer more from destruction of livelihood
systems, difficult access to and use of the natural resources, and from hazards related to
climate change, from health hazards, and from gender-based violence. Women and youth
within these communities were seen as the most powerless and had limited ability to
participate in society’s affairs. Both modern and traditional power structures were
dominated by men and by powerful, politicized local leaders. Such power relationships are
expected to be durable, hence contributing to ongoing processes of marginalization,
inequality and injustice. This implies an evident need to help address the challenges and
vulnerabilities that keep people disadvantaged and poor.

2.2 Sudan country context

Sudan, along with other countries in the Sahel belt, has suffered several long and
devastating droughts in the past few decades, as noted in the 2007 UNEP assessment. The
most severe drought occurred during 1980-1984, and was accompanied by widespread
displacement and localised famine. The UNEP assessment also listed the erosion of natural
resources caused by climate change as among the root causes of social strife and conflict.

The impact of historical climate change, as recorded in Northern Darfur, is severe: the
reduction in rainfall has turned millions of hectares of already marginal semi-desert
grazing land into desert. The impact of climate change is considered to be directly related
to conflict in the region, as desertification has added significantly to the stress on the

pastoralist livelihoods, forcing them to move south to find pasture, as the report states.

Sudan’s development is hindered by regional and local conflicts. In spite of the
Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) concluded in 2005; the Abuja Peace Agreement for

Darfur (DPA) in 2006; the Eastern Sudan Peace Agreement in 2006; and the Doha
Document for Peace in Darfur (DDPD) in 2011) sustained peace has not been achieved.

The independence of the Republic of South Sudan on the 9th January, 2011 has created a
new reality in the country. More than 90% of Sudan is now within the world’s drylands,
where the impacts of climate change on already fragile livelihoods are particularly severe.
The economic and financial losses related to the secession are substantial and have affected
all sectors of the Sudanese economy. The country has lost some three-quarters of its largest
source of foreign exchange (oil), half of its fiscal revenues, and about two-thirds of its
international payment capacity.

The deterioration of economic conditions in Sudan since 2011, resulted in a sharp rise in
the cost of living and enormous pressures on the livelihoods of poor women and men,
especially in rural areas. Meanwhile, the secession of the South, the Arab Spring Revolts
and the current crises in the Middle East, have diverted international resources away from
Sudan, resulting in a hardening of the economic situation and curtailing of the
Government’s ability to deliver core services.

According to official data, 46.5% of the Sudanese are under the poverty line, with the share
of the rural population in the total poor estimated at 75%. Regional variations between
states are enormous, with the highest rate of poverty incidence (70%) being in North
Darfur. Estimates! suggest that 13 million people in Sudan are chronically food deprived,
and according to 2014 data? 6.1 million people in Sudan (around 20% of the total
population) were in need of humanitarian support. The rapid rate of population growth
(from 7.8 million in 1955/56 to 30.9 million in 2008) and its very young nature (47% are
children under 17 years of age) reflect the increasing demands for food, land and natural
resources, and basic social services.

In spite of rapid urbanisation (from 8.3% in 1956 to approximately 40% in 20083), Sudan
remains rural in social, economic, and cultural outlooks, with the majority (over 60%) of its
population living in rural areas and pursuing livelihoods based on traditional rain-fed
farming and pastoralism as the two fundamental economic systems and lifestyles.

Although constituting the majority of the labour force in the country (around 60% in 2008)
and despite their vital role in the national and local economies, the food security and
environmental viability of smallholder producers, and their livelihoods, are under

1 National Baseline Household Survey, 2009.

2 Ali Zatri, Sudan remains important, Shafa Daly Newspaper, 11 Dec 2014.
3 Sudan First Population Census 1955/56 and Fifth Population Census 2008.


enormous pressure, and a persistent state of crisis has developed with a bleak trajectory.
Over the course of recent history, they have lost control over their lands, pastoral
migratory routes are shrinking, and their rights of access to public resources including
formal credit have been curtailed by socially irresponsive legal and policy frameworks?.
Important manifestations of this crisis in rural livelihoods include food insecurity; severe
conditions of poverty; decreased resilience to vicissitudes of nature and climate change;
rupture of the moral economy that historically served as a defense against acute hunger
and destitution; proliferation of resource-based conflicts; general stagnation of the rural
economy; and consequentially very rapid rates of rural-to-urban migration.

Erosion of environmental governance in the country, in particular the multiple and parallel
systems of natural resource management, the diffuse and ill-defined governance
arrangements that exist, and the ambiguous and confused land laws, together with the
erosion of community natural resource management mechanisms, have created a scarcity
of land resources for smallholders, while setting in motion a progressive process of their
alienation and marginalization. This calls for an urgent need to engage people in dialogue
over access to, control of, and use of land and natural resources, while identifying
mechanisms for negotiating the diverse interests of the state and the various social and
livelihood groups.

Most local conflicts are resource-based, and involve conflict between pastoralists and
farmers or amongst pastoralist communities, over land, water, grazing land, and forest
resources. They also include competition within and amongst tribal groups over
community boundaries, mining resources, and livestock routes that have become major
conflict zones. The developmental costs of conflicts are high, involving human insecurities,
erosion of governance, disruption of local economies, disrupting of development
interventions, and political instability.

Sudanese women although play a major, but often under-recognised, role in livelihoods and
the household economy; the overwhelming majority of them, especially in rural areas, are
beyond the reach of basic services while suffering a web of inequalities of a socio-cultural,
economic and political nature including limited access to land and livelihood assets, limited
investment in social capital development, and limited representation in economic decision-
making processes.

Civil society in Sudan has expanded significantly over the last ten years, with increasing
presence of women in the sector. Although some aspects of capacity have been acquired
over the years, CSOs suffer from critical capacity deficiencies including minimal
organisational, advocacy, and social mobilisation skills, insufficient technical capacities in

4 Livelihoods of smallholder producers in Gedarif State, Maan Organisation, 2014, Gedarif State.

terms of relevant sectoral expertise, accountability systems, M&E, resource mobilisation,
and reporting. Although it is visible and highly reputable as a professional organisation,
SOS Sahel Sudan, similar to other national NGOs, operates within an environment which is
characterised by many challenges, including:

e Limited trust of civil society organizations by authorities and restrictive systems,
procedures and HAC laws at national and state levels;

e Recession in rural economies, protracted conflict situations, and degraded resource
bases and local management systems at community level;

e Lack of direct donor support for national organisations and local communities;

e Tribal, regional, cultural, and ethnic polarization; weak community structures and a
dependency mentality;

e Restrictive cultural perceptions about women and their roles in the community.

3. SOS Sahel Sudan Strategic Plan 2010-2014

3.1 Summary of strategic plan and programming

The strategic mandate of SOS Sahel Sudan is to find meaningful interventions to reduce the
poverty of marginalised groups in dryland areas of Sudan. SOS Sahel Sudan has adopted
innovative ways to secure the rights of marginalised and discriminated-against groups, to
draw attention to poverty, and to strengthen the quality of development policy and practice
via encouraging collaboration and participation of all stakeholders in sustainable solutions.

Since 2010, when SOS Sahel Sudan first transformed into a national NGO (having previously
been the Sudan country programme of SOS Sahel UK), projects have been implemented in
the states of Kordofan (North, South and West), Northern Darfur, and Eastern Sudan (Red
Sea). The local contexts of these SOS Sahel programme areas are as follows.

Kordofan: Composed of North, South and West Kordoan states and consist of diverse
ethnic groups with diffrent economic activities (mainly based around traditional agro-
pastoral production) live in in the region. Kordofan is well-known for hosting seasonal
migratory routes of pastoralists, who pass through areas of settled farming. This shared
use, combined with a rapidly increasing population, has been increasingly accompanied by
insecurity, concentrated in some traditional grazing areas of the pastoralists. This has
increased already existing competition over diminishing natural resources and thereby
increased conflicts between settled farmers and pastoralists. Within this context, SOS Sahel
Sudan has continued a programme begun in 2007 in South Kordofan, now entitled
“Community-based Conflict Reduction in South Kordofan, Sudan”.

Eastern Sudan: Composed of Red Sea, Kassala, and Gedaref States, Eastern Sudan is a
region of significant political and economic importance. Projections for 2011 estimate its
population at 4.6 million (Red Sea 1.4m, Kassala 1.8m, Gedaref 1.4m), or about 12% of the
national population. Most development indicators in the Eastern states are worse than the
respective national averages and comparable with those in conflict areas of Darfur.
Pastoral livelihoods in Eastern Sudan support only sparse rural populations but the value
of their production to the national and local economies is great. Other major livelihoods are
based on agro-pastoralism and crop production, mainly sorghum. The main features of
pastoral areas in Eastern Sudan are high rainfall variability, scarcity of water, low natural
productivity and extreme temperatures. SOS Sahel Sudan has worked to address the
drivers of vulnerability, particularly drought and related food insecurity, and unmet
demands for water, in addition to unprecedented gender inequality.

Darfur: Composed of North, South, East, West and Central Darfur states, consist of diverse
ethnic groups with diffrent economic and social activities. Over centuries, powerful and
effective conflict resolution mechanisms were developed that enabled the native
administration mitigated and resolved conflicts between farmers and nomadic pastoralists.
Strong social solidarity and ties between settled farmers and the nomads also helped to
reduce conflict. In the last three decades, environmental degradation; population growth
and growth of animal herds; and scarcity of resources led to the movement of many large
tribes southward and to settlement in land belonging to other tribal groups. This has led to
further increased conflict over land and pastures.

In February 2003, conflict broke out in Darfur and hostilities have escalated since then
between the Government of Sudan and pro-government militias on one side, and the rebel
Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) and Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) on
the other side. SLM/A and JEM draw support from similar ethnic background, primarily
from indigenous tribes who announced that they are taking up arms to protest the neglect,
marginalisation and underdevelopment, and lack of government protection of the
sedentary farming tribes against regular raids and attacks.

SOS Sahel Sudan has worked to address the drivers of vulnerability, particularly local
conflict and shared management of natural resources, and unmet demands for water.

Pulling together the different aspects of the above three programme areas, the strategic
plan for SOS Sahel Sudan for 2010-2014 summarised the organisation’s work as follows:
SOS Sahel Sudan works with poor and marginalised dryland dwellers in Sudan to
promote their rights and livelihoods, and to reduce the inequalities they experience in
the fragile environment on which they depend.

SOS Sahel Sudan’s strategic plan for the period 2010-2014 had the following stated
strategic objectives:

To work with rural communities to combat poverty to provide decent living

To promote environmental rehabilitation while raising awareness on climate

To contribute to the reduction of natural resource-based conflict;

To support rural women’s empowerment for effective participation in
environmental rehabilitation and the reduction of rural poverty;

To build the capacity of community-based organisations (CBOs);

To support disaster-affected groups;

To support efforts leading to effective, sustainable, and rational management of
natural resources.

SOS Sahel Sudan’s programme priorities for the period 2010-2014:

Focus on natural resource management (NRM) and prevention of conflicts over
natural resources, for improved livelihoods and reduction of poverty;

Enhance local and state capacities in NRM and conflict prevention;

Enhance the resilience of pastoralists and farmers to the effects of climate change;
Mainstream the participation and influence of women, youth, and pastoralists in
programmatic interventions;

Set a replicable model for the effective transformation of INGOs into national NGOs;
Advocate for policy reform around decentralised land and water management.

SOS Sahel Sudan’s projects have been numerous since 2010. To mention a few:

Capacity building and strengthening of local NGOs and CBOs (Kordofan, Darfur)
Water and environmental sanitation projects (North and South Kordofan, Red Sea)
Livelihood and poverty reduction projects (Kordofan, Darfur and Red Sea)
Community based conflict reduction projects in Kordofan and Darfur

Response to risk and disaster management (emergency projects)

Peace building and peaceful co-existence projects (Darfur, Kordofan)


3.2 Overall performance of strategy (2010-2014)

SOS Sahel Sudan’s initiatives have been relevant to the context of Sudan and to the
organisation’s mandate. Natural resource management issues, livelihood systems of
marginalised and vulnerable groups, water and environmental sanitation, and conflict
reduction were consistently seen by peopk as their most important concerns for living in
dignity. In addition, evaluation reports indicated huge successes in terms of achievements
and results. Target populations showed clear evidence of positive impacts in relation to local
peace building and improvements in their livelihoods. There are also some clear trends of
heading towards anticipated impacts on people’s resilience and capacity, and changes in
institutional, legal, and policy frameworks related to natural resources, as a result of SOS
Sahel Sudan working with its partners on an advocacy agenda.

In addition, audited financial reports, the excellent reputation of SOS Sahel Sudan, and the
competences of its management, voluntary leadership, and staff indicate the efficient use of
resources and effectiveness of its approach, reflected in achievements on the ground SOS
Sahel Sudan’s grassroots approach, giving ownership of their projects to communities,
remains an important cornerstone of sustainability for project beneficiaries. The points
below highlight some relevance, efficiency, and sustainability dimensions in SOS Sahel
Sudan’s work.

e Diversification of activities: differing ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ activities and events have been
conducted to achieve the objectives of the different projects;

e Trust-building with communities, government agencies, and donors, and promotion
of grassroots democracy, through selecting participants for training and capacity
building which includes components on ownership rights (such as, in local
management of water sources and community forests);

e Building on past experience; scaling up and replication of best practices (such as the
scale-up of natural resource-based conflict reduction programming from North
Kordofan to South Kordofan, and subsequently to Darfur), while also adopting
innovative ideas and adapting the project approach (such as use of community radio,
and including emergency response and disaster risk reduction projects);

e Focusing on the main issues: the root challenges of agro-pastoral production, rural
development, legal and policy reform, water and environmental sanitation, and rural
development issues in Sudan, and enhancing people’s capacity to lobby for change;

e Knowledge creation and use for sustainable development modalities;

e Special consideration given to cross-cutting issues: gender mainstreaming in all
implemented projects; conflict sensitivity / ‘do no harm’ approaches in all conflict
sensitive areas; environmental conservation and human rights as related to issues of
natural resources.



Lessons learned from previous strategic plan (2010-2014)

SOS Sahel Sudan’s interventions are based on a three-way partnership of collaboration,
which includes relevant Government agencies, the community (including CSOs and CBOs),
and SOS Sahel Sudan itself. It is clear that successes of SOS Sahel Sudan’s interventions are
highly attributable to the following:


Close relationships with relevant Government agencies and with the community,
including fostering partnerships with relevant line ministries and other Government
institutions and sharing the responsibility for natural resource management with
Government institutions and community-based shared management structures.

Close, fair and strongly trusted relationship with the community, maintained through:
regular visits and meetings; staffing priorities based on local capacity; respecting local
leadership systems; building and strengthening capacity of local NGOs, CSOs, and
CBOs; fair choice of beneficiaries (based on participatory consultations) and
contributions to solving existing conflicts.

Using of modern technology (media) in implementation of some projects (e.g.
community radio programmes).

Building partnerships with relevant national and international entities, e.g. for the
gum arabic belt project: the Sudanese Environmental Conservation Society (SECS);
IFAD project implementation; and collaboration with ADO in Red Sea State.

Improved understanding of local context and commitment to community priorities
(social accountability) and donor concerns (financial accountability) and to
humanitarian principles.


4. Scanning of SOS Sahel Sudan Internal Environment

4.1 Overall performance

This section considers how factors internal to SOS Sahel Sudan produce a distinctive
organisation, and how this affects the strategic plan. SOS Sahel Sudan’s leadership, both
volunteer board members and staff, embarked with full transparency on scanning and
analysis of the organisation’s internal environment, together with their partners including
representatives of donor organisations. This included honest consideration of both positive
and negative aspects: strengths and weaknesses, and so on.

As part of their review of the operational context influencing Sudanese NGOs (and wider
civil society), the strategy workshop participants considered repositioning SOS Sahel Sudan
strategically, as an organisation working in fragile zones and with the most vulnerable
groups of men and women in Sudan. The tables that follow in this section shed light on the
context of CSOs which definitely affects SOS Sahel Sudan in both positive and negative

Despite the challenges it faces, the organisation has used its niche and strategic
competences, working with local people and focusing on what most affects their
livelihoods, navigating effectively and building solid ground on which to reposition itself as
a highly reputable organisation working on natural resources and environmental
governance, to help build people their capacities for resilience to hazards and sustainably
improve their livelihood systems.

Within what can be a disabling environment, SOS Sahel Sudan’s strategic focus should be
towards working with others to initiate and execute possible responses of advocacy; to
promote networking and partnership; to support capacity building at different levels
including of the organisation’s staff; and to search for different available technological
options and to benefit from relevant social research and studies.


4.2 SWOT analysis

The table below and on the next page summarises the most critical strengths, weaknesses,
opportunities, and threats related to SOS Sahel Sudan, including institutional issues,
management and staffing, programmes and projects, relationships with stakeholders and
partners, and image and marketing challenges.




1. SOS Sahel Sudan as an

e Well recognised and
established NGO

e Clear structure

e Diversity of professional
board members

e Clear mandate
e Accumulated experience

e Project-based funding
e Reliant on renting of

2. Management and staffing

e Experienced staff, well
aware of context

e Strategic plan

e Clear policies and
management systems

e IT/electronic capacity

e No clear cut division
between internal audit and
financial management

e Divergence between staff
capacity and
organisational growth and

3. Programming and projects

e Well informed, drawing
upon mandate and
strategic plan

e Relevant to context

e Driven from situation
analysis through

e Dynamic/flexible and
responding to changing

e Focus on vulnerable
groups in fragile areas

e Needs and demands of
beneficiaries far beyond
current programming

e Tension between
programme approaches:
long term versus short

e Emergency response
versus development

4. Relationships

e Good relationships with

e Variability in how different
agencies understand
“partnership” concept

5. Image and marketing

e Accumulated experience
and knowledge

e Good practices

e Good reputation

e Poor dissemination of
good practice


Opportunities Threats / risks

6. Opportunities and threats e Technological revolution e Uncertainty of situation

e Government and donor related to Government
acceptance of SOS Sahel policies
Sudan e Insecurity and

e Decrease in INGO direct inaccessibility
implementation in Sudan; e Dwindling donor support
SOS Sahel Sudan can
contribute to filling this

e Need for SOS Sahel Sudan’s
experience and knowledge
in NRM to be utilised and

shared with other
development actors

4.3. Stakeholder analysis

SOS Sahel Sudan’s approach of working in partnership with others at local, national,
regional, and global levels has proved to be the best way to achieve success. The table
below and on the next page summarises a map of stakeholders for SOS Sahel Sudan,
including shared interests and how relationships have evolved and been put in motion. The
table shows specific areas for capacity support and areas for improvement. There is a
consensus that SOS Sahel Sudan has proven competences in organizational management,
and financial and social accountability systems, and outstanding competences in
management and staffing which make it a professional Sudanese NGO that can partner
effectively and efficiently with like-minded and shared interest partner organisations.

How we relate to | Capacity Specific points
each other requirements to be considered

Donors, UN,

Conflict, capacity | Knowledge Reporting, access | Institutional
building for CSOs, | sharing, projects | on the ground, donor, credibility
livelihoods, on the ground, approaches and ___| for SOS Sahel
economic equity, | monitoring visits, | methodologies, Sudan, marketing

Institutions Shared interests

environmental meetings, mutual | M&E capacity, and image, long-
governance, learning, success _ | financial term projects
rights (gender, stories, sharing management

pastoralists, SOS Sahel Sudan’s | capacity

vulnerable strategies



Practical Action

Shared interests

As above, plus


Natural resource
governance ,
CEAP, resource-
based conflict

WASH, capacity
building for CSOs,

WASH, capacity
building for CSOs


How we relate to
each other

Relations via
Practical Action,

Relations via

sharing, projects
on the ground,
monitoring visits,
meetings, mutual
learning, success

stories, sharing
SOS Sahel Sudan’s


Direct knowledge
sharing, projects
on the ground,

Projects, reports,
workshops, visits,

Joint project
knowledge sharing



capacity of SOS
Sahel Sudan,
presence on the
ground, M&E

sharing, field

Reports, research
and analytical
skills, presence
on the ground
and technical

Assessment for
capacity building,

Training for SOS
Sahel Sudan staff,

capacity of SOS
Sahel Sudan

Specific points
to be considered

donor, long-term

projects, in-kind

system make
gaps between

Gaps between

Strong sense of





Pastoralists’ and
Farmers’ Unions

Peace Committees
Women’s and
youth groups

State actors



Sister NGOs

SOS Sahel

Private sector


Golden Arrow,
water companies,

Shared interests

needs, capacity
basic rights, M&E,

Legal status,
technical support,
strategies of both

Similar mission,
vision, strategic
capacity building

studies, technical
training, capacity
building, research

How we relate to
each other

Meetings, visits,
projects, capacity
awareness, M&E

monitoring visits,

Coordination, joint
sharing, exchange
visits, meetings

contracts, think
tank meetings,
reports, analysis,



Knowledge about
the local context,

high need for

capacity building

Knowledge of
linkages, trust

Public relations,

trust building,
lessons learned

Mapping of
relevant private
sector actors,
trust building

Specific points
to be considered

Power analysis,
monitoring of
changing context,

security, conflicts
around NRM

HAC and security
procedures need


SOS Sahel Sudan’s distinctive competences

Over the past five years, SOS Sahel Sudan has been able to position itself within the
Sudanese Civil Society Organisation sector and has developed the following distinctive

Building on its long history in Sudan (as SOS Sahel UK, since 1984), an accumulated
wealth of experience and engagement with Sudanese communities;

A deep understanding of the Sudanese context and mutual trust with local and rural

Engagement with local authorities at community and locality levels

An inherited culture of wide recognition and admiration of SOS Sahel Sudan as an
effective and efficient professional organisation;

The SOS Sahel Sudan Board of Trustees, the Executive Committee, and the General
Assembly and senior management are highly recognised in the field and well-
connected nationally, regionally and internally.


5. SOS Sahel Sudan Strategic Plan Issues and Choices

5.1 SOS Sahel Sudan strategic issues

Natural Resource Management (NRM) in Sudan and in turn, the rural communities whose
livelihood systems depend on natural resources, suffer from huge deficits in environmental
governance. Land tenure arrangements and related laws and policies regarding land
investment, land use planning, land grabbing, and similar issues remain important.
Traditional systems of land rights and tenure are suffering from systematic erosion and the
available land is shrinking owing to desertification, fuelling local conflicts between
pastoralists and farmers. In addition, land has been subjected to Government policies
favoring petroleum production, mining, and large-scale commercial agricultural schemes.

Natural resource management is a key driver of the protracted conflicts seen in Sudan, and
accordingly the ethnic tensions and latent conflicts between farmers and pastoralists are
commonly linked with conflict over natural resources. Drought and climate change hazards
contribute much to rural people’s vulnerability and act to degrade their resilience.
Moreover, a number of socio-cultural factors, including tribalism and demographic
dynamics, exert further pressure on natural resources and livelihood systems, further
contributing to violent conflict. Historically, there was limited use of technology and limited
productivity in rural Sudan; today, the proliferation of small arms and use of modern media
and technology have aggravated the conflict situation in all fragile zones. Natural resource
management is thus a key strategic issue, highly related to SOS Sahel Sudan’s mandate.

Accordingly, the most important strategic areas that directly relate to natural resources
and SOS Sahel Sudan’s niches are:

1. Environmental governance, particularly the institutional, legal, policy and resource
use planning aspects.

2. Disaster Risk Management (DRM) and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), including
resilience, and early warning and response systems relating to climate change and
resource-based conflicts.

3. Knowledge, capacities and information management (e.g. for early warning and
response systems).

4. People’s vulnerability and related demands for natural resources particularly

livelihoods and water.

There are specific challenges for the marginalised areas and populations, which explain
better the unprecedented challenges related to vulnerability of people in the periphery to
political manipulation and political subordination by the core; the wide sense of socio-


cultural and ethnic inferiority and cultural subordination; and inability to control, access or
use own resources; all leading to historical processes of impoverishment.

The poor and marginalised people are often exposed to events largely beyond their control:

1. Poor governance structures and weak institutional capacity and accountability
of governance structures, which are unable to respond to people’s essential
needs and interests, including discriminatory legislation and policies leading to
marginalisation of peripheral areas, regional inequalities, and exclusion of some
communities and social groups.

2. Voicelessness and defenselessness of people owing to the weak asset base
(social, economic, human and financial capital) leaving them susceptible to
natural and man-made hazards (droughts, floods, climate change, desertification,
etc), including epidemic diseases and threats of increasing HIV/AIDS prevalence
(marked by limited popular awareness).

3. Protracted violent conflicts (political or communal) including intertribal
conflicts and ethnic tensions.

5.2 Strategic choices

5.2.1 Geographic focus

SOS Sahel Sudan currently works in Eastern Sudan, Greater Kordofan and Darfur. During
the period of the coming five years, expansion might occur in the cross-border areas
between Sudan and South Sudan. This is necessitated by the fact that there is an apparent
shift in population and economic activity from the drier parts of Sudan into the rich
Savanna belt and thus intensification of resource-based conflicts in this belt. After the
secession of South Sudan, more support to pastoralists and farming communities in
Sudan’s transitional and tamazug zones is required.

Cross-border issues with other neighbouring countries adjacent to SOS Sahel Sudan’s zones
of operation might also be areas for serious engagement. Challenges related to regional
wars and climate change might create new realities. Regional initiatives and responses for
disasters and risk reduction are inescapable. However, the expansion process will be
gradual and manageable and grounded significantly in fostering effective partnerships with
other relevant national and international actors as counterparts.


5.2.2 Thematic focus

Within this situation of multiple potential conflicts, SOS Sahel Sudan has identified the
following critical areas for strategic focus:

Strengthen responses at local and national levels and build the capacity of local state
and local community actors to improve people’s access to services and livelihood

Enhance people’s capacity to prevent new violent conflicts and to support local
conflict management and peacebuilding initiatives, working with diverse social
grouping and livelihood systems.

Build an effective synergy between humanitarian, recovery, and development work
through building resilience for vulnerable communities affected by natural and
man-made hazards.

Empower civil society and local people’s organisations to lobby for good
environmental governance and an enabling environment.



Strategic Plan Framework

6.1 Vision, mission, and core values

Shared vision:

All people in Sudan enjoy peace and prosperity.

SOS Sahel Sudan’s mission:

SOS Sahel Sudan supports women and men in Sudan to realise their rights, potentials,

dignity and secured and sustained livelihoods.

Shared core values:

SOS Sahel Sudan is not based in one particu

ar religious, ethnic, livelihood or geographic

group and does not discriminate against or favour any particular group. Accordingly, SOS

Sahel Sudan will adhere to and be strictly guid

ed by the following principles:


Model of good practice


Motivational Tolerant and respectful of diversity
Creative Gender, environment, and conflict
6.2 Strategic directions
1. Engaging and empowering rural communities to launch evidence-based lobbying
and to advocate for good environmental governance.
2. Working with smallholders towards equitable access, control, use and self-
management of natural resources and livelihood assets.
3. Capacity support and engagement with state and non-state actors at all levels.
4. Maintain adequate capacity for humanitarian action within a _ sustainable

development approach.





Strategic / change objectives

Sound and sustainable environmental governance prevails in the fragile zones of
SOS Sahel Sudan’s targeted communities.

People enjoy equitable access to, control of, and use of natural resources and
sustainable and decent livelihood systems.

Resilience is improved and long term and viable response systems for humanitarian
and emergency situations are functioning and contributing to local and global
efforts towards fragility and vulnerability reduction.

Local actors are enabled by knowledge, capacity, skills, and tactics to influence
policies and practices that affect their lives and well-being.

Programme priorities (2015-2019)

Focus on Natural Resource Management (NRM) and environmental good

Prevention and management of conflicts over resources and local social tensions.
Enhance the resilience of pastoralists and farmers to hazardous situations of climate
change and other natural and man-made hazards.

Advocate with local people and others in alliances and networks for legal and policy
reforms and programmes for land and water management.

Improvement of the asset base, reduction of poverty and improvement of
livelihoods of rural people, particularly small producers, pastoralists and farmers.
Mainstream and strengthen people’s own capacity to effectively engage and
influence on issues related to their lives and livelihoods.

Set a replicable model for the effective and sustainable transformation of an INGO
into a national NGO.

Approaches and ways of working

Concrete grounding in the ‘M&Ms’ model: approaches should be Manageable,
Measurable, and Motivational.

Adherence to participatory and cross-learning and to approaches that recognise the
important role of communities in decision-making, implementation, monitoring and
evaluation and ownership of SOS Sahel Sudan’s interventions.

Fostering of genuine and effective partnership with other actors at different levels.
Knowledge creation, knowledge management, use and sharing for the benefit of
men and women in Sudan.


Appendix: Logical framework

Strategic objectives

Areas of intervention


Sound and sustainable
governance prevails.

Environmental and natural
resource-related institutional

Engagement of local and national
actors on legislation, policies, and

Support for people’s capacity to
advocate for decent livelihoods.

Development of knowledge,
information and communication
management systems.

Local and national actors
effectively influence
legislation, policies, and plans.

Legislation, policies, and plans
are reviewed and applied as

People are involved, well-
informed, and able to voice
their rights.

nformation and knowledge
sharing systems are improved.

People enjoy equitable
access to, and control of,
sustainable livelihood

Support for livelihood systems of
pastoralists, farmers and fishing

Development of modality and best
practices for sustainable livelihood

Reduction of resource-based
conflicts and promotion of social

Empowerment of women and youth,
with equitable access to, and control
of, sustainable livelihood assets.

Development and adaptation of
viable technological interventions.

Productivity is increased for
farming, pastoralism, and

Best practices relating to
sustainable livelihoods are

adopted, and management of
ivelihood assets is improved.

Capacity, skills, and
knowledge are improved.

People enjoy peaceful co-
existence across livelihood

Local resilience and
response capacity
regarding humanitarian
and emergency
situations are improved
and contribute to
reductions in fragility
and vulnerability.

Emergency humanitarian support
for disaster-affected communities

(e.g. WASH and LEGS interventions).

Support for resilience capacity and
Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) of
people vulnerable to climate change
impacts, local conflicts, and

Development of relief -
development continuum modality.

Development of transparent,
genuine and workable strategic
partnerships with relevant
stakeholders at various levels.

People’s lives are saved.

Disaster-affected people are
able to protect and rebuild
livelihood assets.

Shocks are reduced and coping
mechanisms adopted.

SOS Sahel Sudan’s
development mandate is
recognised and acknowledged
alongside its emergency role.
Ongoing programming and
funding link together relief
and development efforts.