Creating Opportunities through Mentoring, Parental Involvement and Safe Spaces in the DRC, Ethiopia and Pakistan
To respond to the specific needs of adolescent girls in humanitarian settings and to address the gap in evidence of what works for adolescent girls, the IRC partnered with Columbia University over a three year period (2014–2017) to develop, implement and evaluate the Creating Opportunities through Mentoring, Parental Involvement and Safe Spaces (COMPASS) programme. COMPASS included strategies such as: safe space programming including life skills training and asset building; mentoring activities with the support of older adolescent girls; and engagement with service providers and caregivers to better prioritise and meet the needs of adolescent girls. The programme was implemented with refugees living in camps on the Sudan/Ethiopia border, conflict-affected communities in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), and displaced populations in north-west Pakistan.
The COMPASS life skills and parent caregiver curriculums will contribute to the Adolescent Girls Resource Package currently under development.
COMPASS Learning Report: “A Safe Place to Shine: Creating Opportunities and Raising Voices of Adolescent Girls in Humanitarian Settings”
Research on Adolescent Girls
Although we know that violence against adolescent girls is a problem and a serious human rights, public health and security issue, the humanitarian community is still trying to understand what works to protect adolescent girls from violence and to fill the existing gaps in rigorous evidence. IRC has partnered with Columbia University to undertake a robust research agenda to appropriately define effective and supportive responses for adolescent girls in humanitarian contexts where they are largely invisible and underserved. The research objectives are to understand the feasibility, acceptability and effectiveness of the COMPASS programming for adolescent girls in humanitarian settings and will include two cluster-randomised controlled trials in refugee camps in Ethiopia and in conflict-affected communities in eastern DRC and a quasi-experimental study in Khyber Pakhtunkwah province, Pakistan.
Find out more about the research at the links below, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Read the DRC research brief here.
Read the Ethiopia research brief here.
Read the Pakistan research brief here.
Researching through Empowerment, or Empowerment through Research? Promoting participatory girl-driven learning in the DRC
This research brief describes lessons learned from using participatory methods and girl-driven research design within a rigorous impact evaluation of IRC’s COMPASS program, which is working to empower adolescent girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The brief demonstrates how research itself can be empowering for participants, thus contributing to wider programmatic goals as well as generating reliable data for program improvement. Read the brief here.