Transitional Demobilization and Reintegration Program
Ex-combatants Received Start-Up Kits in South Sudan
November 2013

An important milestone in South Sudan’s new National DDR Program was reached today after 220 of the 290 ex-combatants participating in the pilot DDR program received start-up kits on the area of vocational training they recently completed at the Mapel Transitional Facility as part of the Pilot Reintegration Project.

As part of TDRP’s ongoing technical assistance to South Sudan’s National DDR Commission (NDDRC), TDRP has been collaborating with NDDRC on the pilot project, which is designed to ensure national leadership and transparency and sustainability of reintegration assistance.

The Pilot Reintegration Project is a key component of the country’s new DDR phases and is designed to improve ex-combatants’ livelihoods while facilitating their socio-economic reintegration through follow-up trainings and distribution of start-up kits. The current phase of the Reintegration Project includes the distribution of reintegration start-up kits aligned with vocational trainings received at the Mapel Transitional Facility and also reinforcing livelihoods support trainings on business, financial literacy and cooperatives.

One of the most critical components of the current phase - distribution of start-up kits - has been completed by a team of NDDRC, TDRP and implementing partner UNICON International staff in all four state capitals of the Greater Bahr el Ghazal region, namely Rumbek, Wau, Kuajok and Aweil.

Prior to distribution, a joint team of NDDRC, TDRP and implementing partner staff traveled to four state capitals where the pilot project is being implemented and held orientation meetings with state NDDRC and implementing partner staff to familiarize them with the start-up kits and distribution process.


Distribution was carried out by a team of NDDRC headquarters and state staff and implementing partner consultants and state staff in all four locations. TDRP Pilot Reintegration Project Manager Ms. Alexandra Burrall, who has been leading TDRP’s activities in South Sudan, monitored and assisted the distribution process in Wau, the capital of Western Bahr el Ghazal State and Kuajok, the capital of Warrap State.

The start-up kits were procured from two suppliers in September and were collected in Juba in a private warehouse, where a team of NDDRC, TDRP and implementing partner staff carried out confirmation, sorting and repackaging and labeling to ensure all kits arrive in their final destination and delivered to ex-combatant beneficiaries without damage or discrepancy. Working together with South Sudanese partners, the team developed a distribution plan to ensure all start-up kits are handed over to ex-combatant beneficiaries in a timely and proper fashion.

Prior to distribution, the NDDRC State Coordination Offices informed the ex-combatants about the exact dates of distribution via radio messaging and other forms of public communication. Most ex-combatants came to pick up their kits within the pre-scheduled distribution days, thanks to the successful information and awareness campaign carried out by NDDRC. NDDRC also assisted the ex-combatants with transportation back to their communities to ensure all beneficiaries receive their kits and safely take them back to their homes. A small number of uncollected start-up kits were transferred to NDDRC for distribution in the coming days.

Throughout the process, the Information, Counseling and Referral System (ICRS) has provided a critical level of detail and accountability to the process. Prior to distribution, at the Mapel Transitional Facility, NDDRC’s ICRS caseworkers met with all ex-combatants and familiarized them with the type of start-up kit they would receive in states. The distribution team reported that the ex-combatants were indeed very familiar with the type and contents of start-up kits they received.
The ICRS system has responded to some of the lessons-learned during the CPA-DDR on accountability and record keeping. Data from ICRS software were used to ensure transparency and verification and helped the NDDRC to ensure that the right type of start-up kit is distributed to the right beneficiary. Follow-up trainings on business, financial literacy and cooperatives will continue until the end of November.

The Pilot Reintegration Project aims to support South Sudan’s National DDR Commission in further developing effective and sustainable modalities that can be applied to scale-up the country’s new DDR program which seeks to demobilize and reintegrate more than 100 thousand members of organized forces in the coming years. The project will also develop lessons-learned that can be applied to future DDR programs and install a system of DDR Reintegration Management that can live beyond the pilot phase.

 

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