The accent on collaboration in the UN’s operations in Liberia has fostered some of the most joined-up thinking of any mission anywhere in the world. The UN in Liberia is increasingly working through joint United Nations programmes where United Nations agencies work closely in preparation, implementation, and evaluation.
That includes undertaking joint needs-assessments, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, collaborative decision-making, and a streamlined dialogue with partners. Members of the UN family plan and execute as parts of an organic whole, drawing on the knowledge, best practices and comparative advantages of each other and external partners in search of collaborative solutions, rather than performing unilaterally, as has often been the tendency in the past.
Where a particular theme is taken up by government, the flexibility of the UN family (UNCT and UNMIL – an integrated mission) on the ground means that a combination of its relevant parts can coalesce around that theme, to nurture and support it. The joint programme is also a means for strengthening the United Nations development arm, ensuring that a United Nations presence is sustained in the counties as humanitarian agencies and UNMIL draw down.
Currently the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) which sets out the UN response to the Government’s Poverty Reduction Strategy outlines six joint programmes – support to the counties: Human Security Initaitive in most Neglected Communities, Rural Women Ecomomic Empowerment (RWEE) and Slums Upgrading, Sanitation System and Youth Empowerment. Some other programmes including Sexual Gender Based Violence (SGBV) and Cross Border Security are expected to be launched shortly.
Human Security Initiative in most Neglected Communities
The Human Security Initaitive in most Neglected Communities is a Joint Programme being implemented in four counties: Nimba, Grand Gedeh, River Gee and Maryland. The programme focuses on six interventions Political Security, Economic Security, Community Security, Food Security, Health Security, and Human Security Dissemination.
Rural Women Ecomomic Empowerment (RWEE)
To promote Women Empowerment, the Rural Women Economic Empowerment (RWEE) Joint Programme was lunched. The programme support women empowerment through the provision skills training and micro-financing.
County Support Teams (CSTs)
The United Nations in Liberia is committed to supporting the government’s decentralization efforts. It has therefore established CSTs in each county, aimed at ensuring a coherent and consolidated United Nations approach to addressing county challenges, supporting government, in particular the superintendent’s office, and building capacity of government institutions so that they can increasingly assume responsibility for security, reconstruction, growth and development.
HIV and AIDS
The United Nations in Liberia has agreed to direct its HIV and AIDS support through one joint programme. This approach is guided by an urgency to ensure the government is supported adequately in achieving objectives for scaling up towards universal access to HIV and AIDS prevention, treatment, care and support services for those infected and affected.