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Independent study evaluates effectiveness of Planís program approach

October 31, 2011

Earlier this year, Plan International USA commissioned a study by the Transnational NGO Initiative of the Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs at Syracuse University to better understand how our child-centered and community-level focus enhances the work that we do and the results we achieve. Plan's Child-Centered Community Development (CCCD) approach is guided by our promise to put children at the center of all of our initiatives and promote community participation and ownership.

The study – "How Does CCCD Affect Program Effectiveness and Sustainability?" – assessed and evaluated Plan’s program design and implementation practices, and allowed us to more accurately determine the strengths and weaknesses of our work. Results of the study were generally positive and found that CCCD can be effective in delivering program results, especially for behavior change and improving the quality of services like health, education, and water and sanitation. Lessons learned from this research will be used to further document and improve Plan’s contributions to the lives of children, families, and communities in our 50 program countries around the world.

Read the full results of the study or download the Executive Summary.


CCCD in Action: Malaria prevention in Burkina Faso

In Burkina Faso, Plan’s longstanding relationships at the community level positioned it well as the Global Fund’s implementing partner for a nationwide mosquito net distribution campaign. Its close ties to communities and broad reach within the country ensured that 98% of the population had access to and training on usage of mosquito nets by the end of the campaign.

Malaria is the primary cause of illness in Burkina Faso and kills more than 7,500 people there every year. It is more prevalent during rainy season, when standing water allows the mosquitoes that transmit malaria to multiply in huge numbers. The mosquitoes that transmit malaria are most active at night and usually bite people while they are sleeping. Providing mosquito bed nets to every household in the country would dramatically reduce suffering and would allow the people of Burkina Faso to spend less time being sick and more time building a brighter future for their families and communities.

Through a program implemented by Plan Burkina Faso and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, nearly 8 million insecticide-treated bed nets were distributed to almost every family in Burkina Faso from September 2010 to January 2011. Through our community-development approach, Plan and its partners also provided training in the proper use and maintenance of the mosquito nets to more than 98% of Burkinabes.

As in Burkina Faso, Plan works not only with the communities, but across a variety of levels to address development issues and community needs more effectively. This multilevel approach allows Plan to create partnerships between different organizations and actors and design and implement policymaking processes at the national and international level.

The countrywide bed net campaign in Burkina Faso required attentiveness and careful planning. Civil society was involved in all phases of the project, spanning from the regional level through the community level. In order to understand the need of each household, a survey and a census was completed throughout the entire country. To ensure comprehension of the survey, several facilitators who speak the village’s native language were involved. More than 9,000 volunteers were trained, mobilized, and supervised, and they reached 13.5 million people with malaria awareness messages. This level of engagement has created community ownership of the project and is expected to lead to improved success rates in insecticide- treated bed net usage and reduced numbers of malaria cases each year.

Download the report

Read the full results of the study, "How Does CCCD Affect Program Effectiveness and Sustainability?" to learn more about how Plan’s child-centered and community-level strategy has a positive impact on program design, implementation, and sustainability.

You can also download the Executive Summary here.


 Gary R. Collins, AIA November 1, 2011 2:01 PM
I read the report's precis; unfortunatley it reads like the usual "report-ese", too densly and circumferentially. Better had it synopsized the report in bulleted points in more common language. If you want buy-in by your audience, common speech is far superior for communication, provided it is the common speech of the particular audience. Additionally, child-centered must usually imply family-centered as a corollary. I understand that local linguistic uses and traditions of family, extend