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Community Contribution

Using CLA to Expand Socially Inclusive Programming in Honduras

Michelle DaPra Wittenberger

Honduras is rated as the 6th most unequal country in the world and continues to have one of the highest rates of homicides of women in Latin America. Despite the incredible development challenges faced by women, LGBTI individuals, and other vulnerable populations in Honduras, The Honduras Mission had limited internal bandwidth to coordinate on Gender and Social Inclusion issues, both directly with beneficiaries, as well as across the Missions portfolio.  Recognizing the need to improve the way we engaged with vulnerable populations and provide better resources and guidance to both partners and internal staff, USAID/Honduras hired a Vulnerable Populations Advisor and established an Internal Working Group, and an Expanded Embassy Working Group, to learn and to collaborate on Gender and Social Inclusion issues, policies, and programming. Expanding our collaboration to our partners, the Mission also created its first Community of Practice for Gender and Social inclusion, which served as a platform for implementing partners to coordinate across the Mission’s portfolio.

The Mission adopted new mission policies and procedures, including a new Mission Order Addendum and new Standard Language for all USAID/Honduras contracts, which expanded the Mission’s previous gender policies and guidelines to other vulnerable groups in Honduras. We have seen this work and these changes have led to clear results. Collaboration has become more comprehensive across the Mission – as well as with the other Embassy sections – and direct engagement with vulnerable groups has increased substantially. In addition, our new mission policy, How-to note for partners, and new standard language has meant that all USAID/Honduras Implementing Partners are more informed of Gender and Social Inclusion issues in Honduras, have Gender and Social Inclusion Analysis of their own, have a platform to coordinate with other activities and experts via the Community of Practice, and have significantly improved reporting on Social Inclusion issues and indicators back to USAID, through annual work plans and quarterly reports. 

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