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Community Contribution

Increasing Locally-led Development Solutions in Ethiopia

Shumet Chanie

The Local Capacity Development (LCD) project has regularly employed a collaborating, learning, and adapting (CLA) approach in its efforts to strengthen the capacity of local organizations in Ethiopia. Through creating relationships between local implementing partners, LCD has been able to increase the capacity of local organizations to receive donor funds and have a greater impact on USAID mission objectives. Collaborating and facilitating communication, learning from one another about best practices, and adapting to incorporate those best practices are central to the efforts of the LCD project and exemplify the CLA model for development. Further, these efforts are duplicable and sustainable as demonstrated by independent successes within the network created and the buy-in of local implementing partners. Not only has the CLA model been an instrumental tool in capacity development in Ethiopia, the process has highlighted the appetite for a more collaborative environment in the civil sector in Ethiopia and abroad. Local and international implementing partners were direct beneficiaries of the CLA framework and their ability to continue to apply these lessons after the project ends demonstrates how essential the CLA model can be for any development project. Not only is the CLA framework consistent with the vision, mission, and values of The Kaizen Company, it exemplifies the philosophy of the word kaizen, which means “continuous improvement.”

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