In early September, ICLD held a 3-day training course in Visby for administrative personnel from a variety of locations, including Chililabombwe in Zambia, Ljungby and Västerås in Sweden, Lichinga in Mozambique, and Poti in Georgia – in fact for 21 dedicated administrative officials from 10 Swedish municipalities and 6 partner municipalities.
The training is structured in a way that strengthens the municipal partnerships and the parties’ work on project planning and project quality, and is held at least once a year. The project planning work is grounded in the Logical Framework Approach (LFA) model. The course gave rise to some intense discussions and to a number of “Aha!” moments for all of the participants.
“What we achieve, the result, in other words, is the whole point of the projects – not what activities we carry out,” says Aldrin Sinkala from Chililabombwe in Zambia. “That’s why it’s so important to have an accurate, clear picture of the actual problem in your mind before you start any activities.”
Some of the other insights gained and lessons learned by this course’s participants are presented below, in their own words: “The course gave me insights into project planning and implementation, and ICLD made me reflect on practical experiences and led to me understanding the limitations of my previous project planning work.”
“Useful? It was invaluable! Not only did it give us the opportunity to really discuss both the partnership and the project and to get lots and lots of feedback, it also resulted in us becoming more equal partners, both of whom understanding the core areas of local, democratic development.”
“We built problem trees and we examined causes and effects from all angles – and suddenly, it all became clear to me and I could see exactly what shape the project should take.”
“One thing I found particularly useful was working to develop the problem tree. The training made me realise that a well-defined problem is critical to the project’s success. Rather than diving headlong into a list of activities that we will be carrying out as part of the project, I will now be taking the time to involve the stakeholders in order to carry out a problem analysis, develop goals together, and agree on the activities we need and which will enable us to achieve our goals.”
“Here at ICLD, we’re delighted to have had the opportunity to work with you over the course of a few days and to share in your partnerships’ experiences,” said ICLD’s Maria Larsson and Rikard Eduards, who gave the course.