A five days training workshop has just been concluded at the Sierra Leone Urban Research Centre (SLURC) offices from 21st to 25th of February, 2017 titled; “Gender Sensitive Informal Livelihoods Systems Analysis”. The training was conducted by SLURC in partnership with the Development planning unit at University College London. Facilitators of the training were Mr. Braima Koroma (Co-director of SLURC and Lecturer at Njala University) and Sudie Austina Sellu (Livelihood Researcher at SLURC), and Dr Andrea Rigon (co-investigator of SLURC and Lecturer) and Dr Julian Walker (Director of DPU Training and Advisory Services, and Gender Specialist) of the Development Planning Unit, University College London.
Thirty two (2) participants were trained from different backgrounds comprising of academics, researchers, government officials, NGOs and development practitioners, and Community residents from Cockle Bay, Dwarzack, Portee/Rokupa and Moyiba communities. The training workshop is part of a flag ship research project of SLURC which is aimed to identify, explore, understand and analyse the multiple and dynamic dimensions of urban livelihoods gender of informal settlements dwellers in the four selected communities in Freetown (Cockle bay, Dwarzark, Moyiba and Portee/Rokupa).
Field visits was made in two of the four informal settlements (Moyiba, a hillside community, and Portee/ Rokupa, a coastal community) that SLURC is active in. The research focused on the key livelihood system in which the majority of residents are involved in each community: quarrying for construction stone in Moyiba, and fishing in Portee/ Rokupa. The central focus of the research was to demonstrate the importance of these livelihood systems to the wider city economy (which can provide important advocacy data, given the tendency of urban governance interventions to disable, rather than support, informal urban livelihood systems) and, on the other hand, to understand the importance of these livelihoods systems for women and men living in informal settlements.
Participants were able to highlight a number of findings including the gendered nature of the value chains, with mixed participation overall, but very distinctively ‘male’ and ‘female’ nodes. Another highlight was the importance of stone breaking and fishing as fallback sources of income for those with few alternatives, as they are based on the use of freely available resources (access to both the stone quarry and fishing rights are open to all) and can be exploited by those with very limited assets. At the same time, the lack of social protection in these livelihoods systems was all too clear. The findings of this pilot research will feed into an ongoing research project on gender and informal livelihoods in Freetown.The training pack can be downloaded here
Stakeholder Consultative Workshop on Empowerment Outcomes of Urban Humanitarian Responses in Freetown
- ABOUT US
- Urban Health (Scoping of Urban Health Systems in Freetown Informal Settlements)
- Urban Livelihoods and the City Economy (Urban Livelihoods and Gender in Freetown Informal Settlement)
- Urban Vulnerability and Resilience (Urban Humanitarian Response and Empowerment)
- Urban Vulnerability and Resilience (Profiling Urban Risk)
- RESOURCE UNIT