WHAT WE DO
AGO implements various livelihood projects in urban and rural areas to assist vulnerable families in earning a living. It’s approach focuses on including and empowering vulnerable groups, particularly women. The livelihood interventions provided by AGO include income generation assistance, vocational skills training, support for micro, small, and medium businesses, apprenticeships, cash-for-work programs, and multi-purpose cash assistance. Income generation assistance aims to enhance the capacity of individuals or groups to generate income by providing vocational skills training, capital, or commodities. Vocational skills training is conducted in collaboration with government vocational training centers to develop the specific skill sets of beneficiaries and increase their future economic stability. AGO also supports the establishment of businesses and services that need to be improved in the community based on assessments and consultations with community leaders and government institutions. Apprenticeships are implemented by AGO to provide a professional experience to individuals in areas with limited economic opportunities. Cash-for-work programs offer temporary employment in public projects to the most vulnerable segments of the population, such as repairing roads, clearing debris, or rebuilding infrastructure. Additionally, AGO provides multi-purpose cash assistance to vulnerable families in response to immediate community needs. AGO introduces a new approach to livelihood interventions in Iraq through the Enterprise and Innovation Programme (EIP). The EIP aims to stimulate sustainable growth by supporting the development of startups and micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs). This program focuses on improving the business advisory services infrastructure and achieving outcomes such as successful startup support, resilient and growing MSMEs, job creation, and increased capacity of local business advisory service providers.
Agriculture And Climate Changes
AGO recognizes the importance of sustainable resource use and the impact of climate change on poverty reduction. AGO work with communities on the front lines of the climate crisis to find sustainable solutions. Extreme weather events and environmental impacts disproportionately affect the most vulnerable people, including farmers and entrepreneurs. AGO focuses on addressing climate change, water security, natural resource management, and access to energy to help people in fragile settings adapt to new risks. AGO prioritizes practical and meaningful change at the local level and seeks opportunities for expansion and iteration globally. In terms of agriculture and food security, AGO acknowledges that hunger is prevalent in remote regions heavily dependent on the natural environment. Climate change further exacerbates these challenges. AGO takes a holistic approach, empowering rural families through training in agriculture, resource management, water, alternative income, and nutrition. AGO promote site-specific agriculture to support smallholder farmers in cultivating higher-yield, nutritious crops while conserving natural resources. AGO’s programs also aim to enhance resilience to climate change by sharing knowledge on climate-adapted cultivation and harvesting methods. Market-Based Approaches enable communities to earn a living from their agricultural products sustainably. AGO’s core interventions in agriculture and climate action include advocacy for environmental rights, waste management, capacity building for communities and governments in sustainable climate practices, youth and community-led environmental initiatives, training farmers in new agricultural techniques and technologies, supporting farmers with business management and agribusiness, capacity building for agricultural departments, introducing solar and new irrigation tools, and promoting water management best practices through field schools.
AGO implements human rights protection programs to assist vulnerable groups such as children, adolescents, women, the elderly, people with disabilities, and displaced persons. AGO interventions prioritize the individual’s needs and provide protection services across multiple sectors. AGO ensures protection for survivors of gender-based violence and vulnerable children, supports access to food assistance and livelihood opportunities for marginalized groups, and works to mitigate their exposure to new threats. In response to socio-political and environmental crises, AGO extends protection to large numbers of displaced persons and returnees in its operational areas. AGO provide safe protection services and ensure access to safe food and water. AGO also supports the mobilization and involvement of communities to establish mechanisms for preventing and addressing wrongdoing, particularly for the benefit of the most vulnerable groups. AGO promote the empowerment of marginalized groups, offering political, economic, and social tools to improve their living conditions and recognize them as citizens with equal rights. AGO’s core protection interventions include addressing gender-based violence, child protection, mental health psychosocial support, and providing legal protection and assistance. AGO work towards durable solutions and development by collaborating with governmental departments, such as the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (MOLSA), to enhance their capacity and advocate for people’s rights through social protection programs and government assistance. Capacity building for MOLSA staff, advocacy for rights, and adherence to guiding principles such as core humanitarian principles, child protection minimum standards, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) are fundamental to AGO’s protection programs. AGO operates based on protection principles that prioritize the well-being and rights of individuals in need of protection and support.
AGO focuses on promoting good governance by minimizing corruption and mismanagement, incorporating the views of communities, especially youth, ensuring the voices of the most vulnerable are heard in decision-making, and guaranteeing women’s rights. AGO’s Good Governance programming prioritizes four main areas:
Priority One: Developing the capacities of local authorities, civil society organizations (CSOs), and communities to formulate and implement local development plans and address local issues. This includes capacity building for local authorities and CSOs, awareness-raising activities on active citizenship, supporting partnerships between authorities and communities, and providing financial and technical support for local development projects
Priority Two: Increasing transparency in local decision-making through the support of accountability mechanisms. AGO focuses on the capacity development of local authorities in accountability and transparency practices, facilitating the introduction of new accountability mechanisms, capacity development of CSOs in monitoring and evaluation, and raising awareness about transparent decision-making processes.
Priority Three: Enhancing the capacities of CSOs and governments to collaborate and work together in policy-making processes and implementation. This involves supporting assessments of policy and legal frameworks, stakeholder analysis, multi-stakeholder dialogue, advocating for decentralization, capacity development for evidence-based policy making, and monitoring and evaluation of policy implementation.
Priority Four: Strengthening CSOs as independent actors and advocates for the needs of their communities, including marginalized and vulnerable groups. This includes tailored capacity development programs, facilitation of advocacy plans, grant competitions for civil society groups, dissemination of proven approaches, exchange visits and experience sharing, and support for networks and alliances for joint advocacy.
Throughout all of AGO’s Good Governance activities, AGO emphasizes gender equality and the inclusion of vulnerable groups in the decision-making process. AGO conducts research on barriers to women’s and vulnerable groups’ leadership and participation, provides capacity and skills development for women leaders and women’s groups, supports CSOs advocating for vulnerable groups, and facilitates experience sharing among CSOs.