Eastern Sudan: Integrated Technology Programme
This work has now been completed, but learning from these projects continues to inform our work. For the most recent information, please see our project news or read more about our Reducing Vulnerbility, Markets and Livelihoods and Access to Services programmes.
Eastern Sudan is a region that has received Practical Action's attention and active involvement since the early 1990s. Divided into two states, Kassala and Gedarif, its 2.9 million-strong population contains many people seeking to rebuild their lives and escape poverty. Eighty per cent of people living in the region reside in rural areas or are nomads.
Then there are the thousands of people from west and south Sudan who have fled from years of civil war. Adding to these war-weary incomers are the many refugees of different tribal groups who have arrived from neighbouring Eritrea and Ethiopia.
Practical Action's Eastern Sudan Integrated Technology Programme (ESITP) was established in 1993 and its work continued to help improve the lives of the region's poor. Under the programme, Practical Action's activities were undertaken in the following areas:
The prime target of Practical Action's on-going work in eastern Sudan is the poor in general with a particular focus placed on the internally displaced people. Women, who are among the most vulnerable groups, receive a special emphasis.
More than 85 per cent of the women reached through the project so far have been widows, divorced or household heads. About 25 per cent have come from displaced and refugee communities. Usually, the skills they developed and possessed in their home area are no longer of use in the urban areas they move to in Kassala or Gedarif.
An example of Practical Action Sudan's activities with this target group includes its work in Kassala town's Wau Nur shanty residential area. Most people living in this community have fled conflict in other parts of Sudan.
Practical Action Sudan has undertaken assessments on displaced women in Wau Nur to evaluate whether they would benefit from additional manufacturing skills training to create new income generating methods. This led to 25 women being trained in tie-dye methods. Additional training has been provided in food processing and producing building aggregates.