What We Do: Sharing Knowledge and Building Collective Knowledge

“EMpower is fantastic at helping organisations learn from one another. They once funded us to go on a learning exchange with another grantee… and that was really helpful. They also convened all the… orgs in [our region] and our participants learned so much from the others. They are really great at building and fostering engagements and learning and collaboration. When EMpower invests in such capacity building activities as curriculum development, Monitoring & Evaluation training, and so on, it makes a better impact in a field, community, and organisation.” Quote from EMpower grantee partner (Grantee Perception Report, conducted by the Center for Effective Philanthropy, 2019)

EMpower works closely with grantee partners to provide support beyond financial assistance. This support is typically in areas such as girl-focused and/or gender equitable programming, monitoring and evaluation, fundraising, governance, and child and youth safeguarding.

EMpower connects partners across the globe, bringing organisations together around issues important to them; offering time and space to share learnings and build collective knowledge.

EMpower Learning Exchanges

We bring together representatives, including young people from grantee partner organisations and other external specialists, to share knowledge and tools on critical topics to improve effectiveness and advance partnerships. By connecting grantee partners with each other, as well as with other specialists, a web of learning and shared solutions is created, leading to more effective ways to support young people over the long-term. Learning exchanges occur at the national, regional and global level.

When grantee partner organisations are able to reflect, learn and apply knowledge and perspectives from each other and from young people, they are able to better impact young people’s lives.

Some learning exchange focus areas include: female entrepreneurship, monitoring and evaluation, girl-centred programming, sports and youth development, effective communications, diversifying funding, and job paths for young women in sectors generally associated with males.

Recent Events
In September 2019, EMpower hosted a three-day learning exchange in Accra, Ghana, on non-traditional livelihoods, bringing together seven of our Ghanaian and Nigerian partners: NORSAAC, Songtaba – Women’s Rights Coalition, Network of Women in Growth, Net-Organization for Youth Empowerment and Development, Challenging Heights, Urban Agriculture Network and Girl Power Initiative.

Fostering cross-learning on Non-traditional Livelihoods for Young Women in Ghana

Most organisations had a programme practitioner and young women (program participants) present at the Learning Exchange, providing an inspiring mixture of experiences and perspectives. The adolescent girls brought key insights on their perspectives on work skills and self-perception.

The learning exchange was designed for the organisations to share experiences on various topics related to non-traditional livelihoods:

  • Why do we focus on non-traditional livelihoods and why girls?
  • How do we measure the success of our programs?
  • Sharing of programmatic tools with peers and EMpower

There were many learnings on supporting young women build non-traditional livelihoods and also addressing gender equality issues in the communities in which they work. Learn more here!

Building Bridges: EMpower’s Learning Exchange Series in India

Started in May 2019, this series of roundtables seeks to promote collaboration and knowledge-sharing among grantee partners in India. Topics have included employability and employment programming for young women and girls, compassionate counseling and resiliency, engaging men and boys in gender equality, and girl-specific STEM programming. Read more here.

Capacity Building Initiative for Livelihoods-Focused Partners in E/SE Asia

In March 2020, and with financial support from Credit Suisse, EMpower developed a webinar series for five livelihoods-focused grantee partners from E/SE Asia to share international evidence on working effectively with program alumni. The intent was to strengthen each organisation’s strategic and programmatic approaches to alumni engagement, a topic grantees identified as important to the sustainability of their work. Two additional grantee partners (KOTO in Vietnam and IkamvaYouth in South Africa) shared information about their successful alumni engagement strategies. Read more here.

Virtual Learning Exchange on Programming for Very Young Adolescent Girls in Latin America

In April 2020, and in lieu of an in-person learning exchange that was cancelled due to COVID-19, EMpower hosted a series of virtual sessions for practitioners from eight Latin American grantee partners to share challenges and lessons learned from their EMpower-supported programming for very young adolescent girls (and boys). EMpower also shared global “emerging good practices” on this topic from other grantee partners across the globe. This exchange resulted in the creation of a Virtual Community of Practice on working with very young adolescents.

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