Towards a just world through work and equality www.solidaarisuus.fi
Knowledge and skills empower people The International Solidarity Foundation (ISF) is an experienced Finnish development cooperation organisation which implements development cooperation projects in Nicaragua, Uganda and Somaliland with the aim of furthering issues pertaining to gender equality, poverty alleviation and civil society. The values that guide our work are solidarity, equality, equity and participation. The ISFâ€™s long-term, effective development cooperation produces sustainable results, and around 150,000 people benefit from our work. We help increase peopleâ€™s knowhow and enhance their feeling of self-worth as well as create possibilities for them to act independently to overcome poverty. Through engaging local people, partner organisations and partner cooperatives and getting them involved in the planning, completion and assessment of projects, we can ensure that we have a far-reaching impact in the right areas and that our partners retain the knowhow they gain. Support is provided to our partners in a cost-effective manner. Over 22,000 people in Finland already follow and support our work. Together, we are building a just world where everyone will have the chance to live a dignified, happy life. We are a partner organisation of the Finnish Partnership Agreement Scheme funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.
The right to decent work Improved access to livelihoods through decent work is one of the ISFâ€™s key goals. Our aim is for people to be able to secure a sufficient livelihood through their own work. With this, poverty can be defeated. We focus on improving the food security of the poorest families. We help family farmers and small entrepreneurs increase the productivity of their work. We also help strengthen cooperatives, which function as significant motors for peopleâ€™s social and economic development.
Equality as a means of development Gender equality is actively promoted in all our development cooperation. For us, equality is both a human right and a means of development. We help secure the right of women to decide about their own health, finances and participation in society themselves. We have a holistic understanding of equality and promote this in all our development projects, both in our own actions and those of our partner organisations. This way we are creating the foundations for the development of the whole society.
Strengthening civil societies By helping strengthen civil societies, the ISF is enhancing the possibilities for people to affect their own society’s development. The ISF helps increase the capability of reliable local partner organisations and partner cooperatives to work together with others to reduce poverty.
The ISF’s work in Somaliland includes efforts to end the practice of female genital mutilation. Najma Adan Muse’s mother took part in an ISF-run course, where she got information on the subject as well as a renewed sense of purpose to end this traditional practice. ”My sister and I were lucky,” says Najma. “Our mother also convinced our father, and no one laid a ﬁnger on us. I’ve already decided that in the future I won’t subject my own daughters to female genital mutilation.”
Every single day, the life of one person, family or community changes for the better. The ISF is helping to create new opportunities and achieving sustainable results in Uganda, Nicaragua and Somaliland.
In Uganda, we train community educators who help victims of domestic violence make a fresh start.
In Nicaragua, we train new beekeepers.
In Somaliland, we help ensure the availability of food and increase the rate of literacy.
We create possibilities for decent work by strengthening cooperatives in all our partner countries.
We help women increase their power to make decisions in all our partner countries.
With the ISF’s support, people become empowered, take charge of their own life and put an end to poverty one step at a time. “I took part in an ISF beekeeping course with my father. I got really interested in it. You start to like bees as much as honey when you learn what they do. In the future, honey production will form a new livelihood for Nicaraguan women. I’m training others at the moment. We’re also developing our own cooperative,” says Ana Sujey Palma. “New beekeepers take their work very seriously. The first hardships have been overcome and there’s an increase in self-belief. All information is shared. Training and advice are important for beekeepers. Poor people cannot permit themselves many mistakes. We aim to
double honey production and make a decent living,” says Andres Palma. Ana Sujey Palma and her father Andres Palma are Nicaraguan beekeepers.
International Solidarity Foundation Solidaarisuus Lintulahdenkatu 10, FIN-00500 Helsinki www.solidaarisuus.fi Follow us on: Facebook Twitter YouTube
Published on Feb 24, 2014