One of Ace Africa’s greatest strengths is its profound understanding of the contexts and communities with which it works, enabling it to design and carry our bespoke programmes relevant to varying socio-economic environments. Ace acquires this understanding through conducting robust baseline research in each project site.
Ace Africa uses household surveys, key informant interviews and other qualitative research methods which help to uncover levels of health, nutrition, education and income, household demographics and the communities attitudes and social behaviours The information gathered and analyzed is essential for informing the focus of community development work and enables measurement of impact over time.
As part of the Ace Africa – Haller foundation partnership project Ace has shared its research expertise and conducted a baseline study in one of Haller’s project counties, Kisauni County, Mombassa. The baseline uncovered a myriad of issues specific to Kisauni County and sub-counties. The baseline research will enable Haller to implement more relevant programmes as well as track the progress and impact of its projects using multiple indicators.
The research showed, for instance, that vegetable gardening and poultry keeping activities in Kisauni are a critical household strategy bringing all kinds of benefits. Not only improving household nutrition but also securing other basic needs through the sale of produce and thus securing access to health care and education etc.
The research also demonstrated pronounced variation between sub-counties of Kisauni – knowing these significant difference will be essential for planning targeted and relevant programme planning and implementation.
In addition, rates of child labour seem high. In a few of the sub-counties as many as 30% of households report incidence of child labour. Indeed, there is a need to integrate child protection services to avert the rising cases of child abuse. Furthermore, the study showed that that the communities in Kisauni have relatively high levels of awareness about education, health and other services yet low levels of accessibility.
These kinds of finding are critical helping organisations determine the future of their implementation in specific project sites. The work research enables organisations to track their programmes against project targets and track their impact and understand exactly which parts of their programme are working effectively and which require adaptation. Research such as this are essential for organisations such as Ace and Haller enabling them continuously learn, modify their work and become more effective in the field.