STRENGTHENING SOCIAL COHESION IN CENTRAL ASIA

STRENGTHENING SOCIAL COHESION IN CENTRAL ASIA

STRENGTHENING SOCIAL COHESION IN CENTRAL ASIA

                                           1 February 2020 — 30 April 2022

 PROJECT’S GOALS

The project’s overall objective is to prevent radicalisation among labour migrants and their families and ensure rehabilitation and reintegration of returnees through supporting cross-border and regional civil society initiatives. This overarching goal is supported by the specific objective of promoting cooperation among key state and non-state actors in three Central Asian countries (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan) in facilitating the rehabilitation and reintegration of returnees through psycho-social support and strengthening social cohesion between labour migrants, their families, and communities. In the pursuit of this objective, the project was expected to achieve the following outcomes: 

1) Strengthened social cohesion between labour migrants, their families, peers and communities2) Enhanced rehabilitation and reintegration mechanisms of repatriates through psycho-social support and community-welcoming initiatives3) Improved cooperation and sharing of best practices among key state and non-state actors of four Central Asian countries around the issue of radicalisation
THEORY OF CHANGE

IF key community-level institutions and stakeholders collaborate around vulnerability factors of labour migrants, their families, and returnees; and IF cross-border exchanges and sharing best practices happen at the Central Asian regional level; THEN the root causes of violent extremism for these groups will be addressed, resulting in more socially cohesive communities and reintegration of returnees.

THE IMPLEMENTATION APPROACH

The project embraced a multi-stakeholder approach grounded in the guiding principles of peacebuilding and conflict prevention work. As such, it adopted a rights-based, participatory and inclusive approach, sensitive to gender and mobilising youth. The approach was culturally-sensitive and flexible, adapting to changing contexts. To ensure the project’s sustainability and local ownership, building capacity constituted a central pillar of the project’s approach.

PROJECT REACH

The first component of the project targeted labour migrants, their families, peers, and communities. Two community assessments were conducted in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan on communication and relationship patterns between migrants, their relatives, friends, and foremen in destination countries. A Stakeholders’ Platform on Safe Labour Migration uniting 95 participants was successfully established in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. A series of training courses on the principles of effective social work, psycho-social support, and pre-departure orientation for labour migrants strengthened the knowledge and skills of 238 social workers, psychologists, self-government bodies, and civil society representatives.

More information on component 1 available here

The target groups for the second component were returnees from conflict zones and professionals dealing with the rehabilitation and reintegration processes of the repentant. Two case studies to analyze the Kazakh and Uzbek approaches and practical experiences of repatriations have been carried out.
30 psychologists, social workers, and traditional leaders in Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan received training courses on providing psycho-social and trauma healing support.
More information about component 2 available here

The project’s third component targeted relevant state agencies, local self-government bodies, experts and academicians.  

Search organisedtwo Central Asian regional conferences and regional practical seminars, which constituted a platform to exchange lessons learned and best practices between countries in the region, both among governments and civil society actors. Four policy briefs have been developed and circulated among key stakeholders, capturing various best practices and lessons learned on rehabilitation reintegration, de-radicalisation, and multiple aspects of labour migration.  This third component’s main result is the creation of a multiple stakeholder network that includes 102 representatives of NGOs, government organisations, and academic circles to improve cooperation and sharing of best practices from Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan around the issue of radicalisation.

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