The Liberia Citizen-Government Engagement Project (CGEP) started July 2014, seeks to close the communications and engagement gap in Liberia between government and citizens and citizens and their government. The project was piloted in two counties ---- Grand Cape Mount and Margibi, in partnership with the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, women’s and community groups and citizens. The substantive focus of the project has been to strengthen the ability of government to effectively respond to citizen reports of incidences of child sexual abuse.
This Final Report describes the activities, lessons learned and outcomes of the Citizen-Government Engagement Project (CGEP). CGEP has been a one-year pilot project in Liberia, funded by Making All Voices Count (MAVC), and implemented by The Global Citizens’ Initiative. The project took place in two Liberian counties-Margibi and Grand Cape Mount.
Results from this baseline survey will be used for three main purposes: (1) to establish a baseline upon which the scale-up project can measure its ability to achieve targeted results; (2) to help identify a set of key indicators that the Project can use to track progress; and (3) to provide a core set of issues and reflective questions that can guide the feedback loop process of engaging stakeholders in project developmental evaluation to improve effectiveness and impact.
CGEP is now fully operational in all four Project sites-Margibi, Grand Cape Mount and Bomi counties and the West Point District of Monrovia. Being fully operational means we have established a Project location at the local Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection Office, established our SMS based platform and telephone hotline system, and begun citizen awareness raising campaigns.
The TGCI Liberian CitizenGovernment Engagement Project (CGEP) seeks to engage citizens and government in interventions to combat child sexual abuse and gender-based violence in Liberia.1 Through engaging citizens with publicity and an SMS and hotline system, the project addresses sexual abuse and rape by increasing knowledge of the issue, rates of reporting, the response by government offices, and persecution of perpetrators.
In May and early June, a third wave of data collection occurred in each of the four counties where the project is piloted (Montserrado, Margibi, Cape Mount, and Bomi). There was a government officials focus group within each county. Five communities were selected within each county in which to conduct one focus group with community members, boys (ranging between ages 12-17), and girls (in the same age range). There was not an adult focus group conducted.
Using our reporting matrix, we were able to expand official government participation in the Project to include (a) the Ministry of Education with a special focus on school-based sexual abuse and gender violence; and (b) the Ministry of Justice with a special focus on addressing incidents of sexual abuse committed by UN Peacekeepers, and putting in place systems for capturing sexual abuse perpetrators who attempt to flee to neighboring countries.