The Constellation is made up of many stars, communities that are taking action, addressing global challenges in our local context, using our own strengths to find solutions that are within our reach. In The Constellation, we are sharing the solutions that we are finding. One way to share is through storytelling, through small movies. Hence the project of Visual Journey, which was at the centre of attention on Wednesday, the 18th of October 2023, on the occasion of the yearly ABCD Unconference.
Faulu Productions is a community-based organisation based in the Kakuma refugee camp in northwestern Kenya (team in the picture). The Faulu team intends to eradicate early pregnancy and forced marriage observed in most camp-based communities. The team reached out to The Constellation to take part in the Go Girl programme where the SALT-CLCP methodology supports girls and people around them in finding solutions and establishing behaviour change so that their health and safety are improved.
The Global Fund for Children (GFC) Knowledge Fair: A Unanimously Acclaimed Event, Co-created by Participants
In Kolhapur, Maharashtra, from the 20th to the 22nd of May 2023, a Knowledge Fair was held bringing together representatives of the villages of Pirwadi, Vashi, Nandwal, Kandgaon, and Kerli, where the Avani organisation led SALT conversations for the past two years, Indian organisations who also facilitate SALT-CLCP (Rural Aid and Purnata from West Bengal, Faith Foundation from Meghalaya) and the GFC. Avani organised the event with the GFC’s support.
Second Voice Festival: Linking and Learning between African Communities and Organisations for an Inclusive Society
Hosted by The Constellation, the festival was held from the 24th to the 27th of July 2023, bringing together 45 delegates from 10 multi country projects in Africa, implemented by grantees of Voice, counterparts from Asia through video conference, and representatives of Voice and The Constellation. Even though they work on very different topics, participants realise that they have a lot in common and a lot to learn from each other.
Community facilitators stimulate and support the implementation of community development projects in Guinée Forestière
AGUIDE (Association Guinéenne pour le Développement Economique) is an NGO based in N’Zérékoré, the largest city in the Guinée Forestière region of southeastern Guinea. AGUIDE’s dream is to train community facilitators throughout the country, so that they can stimulate and support the implementation of community development projects.
The CATCH approach is a community driven response. The approach uses the SALT method to drive the community response to HIV and other health related matters. The approach has acted as an effective catalyst for the implementation of the National Community Mobilization Strategy.
On the 26th of June 2023, 13 people from 9 different countries had the opportunity to meet online and on-site with members of the executive team, governance and beneficiaries of the Temedt association, which has been fighting descent-based slavery in Mali since 2006. This is part of the Voice for an Inclusive World project of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, implemented by a consortium between Oxfam Novib and Hivos. The hosts were delighted to see the interest aroused by their action.
Improving access to health care for migrants and vulnerable populations in Algeria: review of the project
Between February and September 2022, The Constellation’s mission was to encourage Algerian civil society and health professionals directly involved in the care of People in Socially Vulnerable Situations to design in synergy a strategy based on their experience and implement it.
On the 17th of June 2023, 16 people from 6 different countries had the opportunity to meet online with members of COVAW which has been fighting for the rights of women in Kenya since 1995. This learning visit is part of the Voice for an Inclusive World project.
“As the underlying reason of the village situation is poverty, we focused on budgeting capacity building to ensure that women, and, through them, girls, and children, have access to the resources made available by the government or organisations to tackle the violence.” — COVAW.
“We did not understand much about budgeting. But we have now learned how to budget and to talk with confidence.” — A woman resident.
The problem is not albinism, it is the negative perception towards it. If we emphasise love and care in families and society, people with albinism will reach their goals.
Tunaweza — We Can
Villagers of Kandgaon weaved their dream for children and youth with the facilitation of the Avani team on the 4th of April 2023. An 11-year-old girl said: “I am very happy with this process, adults need to listen to us, and children need to have a say in the functioning of the village.” The elected female head assured that she will involve children in future conversations.
Patient and Community-led Response to NCDs at the Civil 20 Integrated Holistic Health Summit in India
Rituu B. Nanda was at the C20 Summit in Faridabad from the 7th to the 9th of April 2023. She presented the above poster about the work on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in India.
Six years ago, Leonie Heppener visited Kithutuni in Kenya. Inspired by the results of the SALT-CLCP approach there, and by The Constellation coach Onesmus Chengo Mutuku in particular, she developed her own dream: Building a community with and around teenage girls to prevent teenage pregnancy and school drop-out in Ghana.
Go Girl Ghana then became a source of energy for The Constellation teams and partners in Cameroon, India, Indonesia, and Kenya : the Go Girl initiative was born and embraced by The Constellation members!
Now, Go Girl Ghana is reaching out to their source: Onesmus, again, this time accompanied by Busolo Quintonne (Aaliyah), a champion from Go Girl Kenya within and around the refugee community in L’Afrikana, Nairobi, will return to Ghana in May.
From the 20th to the 23rd of January 2023, The Constellation with its IndoCompetence team as a host, organised and facilitated a Link and Learn event for Voice grantee organisations and groups in Asia, to explore the theme of “Improving our practices for a sustainable inclusive society” and with the aim of creating communities of practices.
“While we did the self assessment training, we shared stories of change amongst the facilitators. From those stories, we realised that it is the little things that add up to the big picture eventually. A good example is the story of a family that we visited. Their relationship was rebuilt, and they linked our facilitator to other families that had been facing the same issue as them. It makes us happy when we receive such calls from the community! ”
Aaliyah Busolo Quintonne, L’Afrikana
In September, The Constellation facilitators helped representatives of the multi-country projects to deepen their reflection about their joint dream for an inclusive world – and to establish the practices that will help to reach the dream.
Composed of health professionals, association executives and volunteers, and peer educators, the participants presented the results of the various projects and activities they carried out during the year, with migrant and vulnerable populations at the level of their wilayas (provinces).
“This is me, this is what I should be doing,” Patricia Kamende from Kenya is full of excitement when she talks about the Visual Journey filming training she is currently following in the context of the Link and Learn process.
On the 25th of August, representatives of all 19 multi-country grantees from the three regions built the common dream for an inclusive world.
“We are all diverse in terms of the work that we do in our organization and of our personal advocacy, but we bloomed into having a common dream of equality, respect, and caring for one another and for nature.”
“The sharing; the presence of the people, though virtual, is full of positive energy complementing one another!”
In June, new groups of facilitators were trained in the SALT-CLCP approach in the cities of Annaba, Béjaïa, Oran, and Tamanrasset. In total 71 persons from civil society and the medical sector came together. They applied SALT and CLCP to themselves as they built their dreams for their cities in 15 years from now, when free and equal access to health would really be achieved.
The members of the Women’s Café made one of their dreams come true. On the 20th and the 21st of May, women from Amsterdam performed with music and stories of strong women who were Heroines to them.
“The Cameroon team’s Online SALT Programme is progressing well despite challenges related to national insecurity, poor electricity, and internet. The team members remain enthusiastic and determined,” says coach Autry Haynes.
“When we bring our individual dream to the circle, we discover that we have so much in common.”
SALT-CLCP training of L’Afrikana in Kenya on the 20th of May.
The new teams of SALT-CLCP facilitators in Algeria have started their first SALT visits, with distance support from The Constellation coaches Taha, Luc, Loli, and Marlou.
“Everyone joins an NGO with a dream to achieve something. Generally, no one asks the staff what their dream is. So, when you asked this question, it forced me to think about my own dream. Collective dream building enabled me to align my dream with other staff. Now I feel that I am working towards a personal as well as organisational dream.” Imran, one of the Avani staff members.
In The Constellations newest partnership, Voice and The Constellation collaborate to facilitate a learning from experience process between 19 rightsholder groups that have their activities in Cambodia, Indonesia, Kenya, Laos, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Tanzania, The Philippines, and Uganda. Their activities are aimed at reaching an inclusive world through emancipation and listening to all: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people, people with disability, vulnerable elderly and youth, women facing exploitation, abuse, and/or violence, and indigenous people and ethnic minorities.
As part of his project initiated by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and supported by the International Organisation of Migration (IOM) local office in Algeria, a team from The Constellation trains 32 people in facilitation of SALT-CLCP. This training is the first step in a capacity building process aimed at increasing and improving the involvement and access to health care of target populations, including migrants.
In January, the Kenya Facilitation Team made a visit to communities that hosted the 2021 Global Learning Festival (GLF). The intent of the visit was to Stimulate, Appreciate, Learn and Transfer (SALT) together and reflect on the GLF experience.
Historically, HIV campaigns in Pakistan have focused on fear-based messaging around prevention and medical information, which may have further propagated stigma and discrimination, deteriorating health outcomes of those affected. To address this challenge and create acceptance for, while addressing stigma against, people with lived experiences of HIV, Sujaag (meaning ‘to-awaken’) – a hybrid community engagement and mass communications project by IRD – was launched in the region.
“It is amazing what you can achieve in connecting from all over the world for 90 minutes!”
After self-assessment and identification of 3 priorities, villagers started to clean up their canal even before the development of their action plan.
“We began our first SALT visits in the beginning of 2022. We were thrilled to explore and learn with & from the people in the community.”
In November 2021, The Constellation hosted a two sessions webinar on the topic of Flourishing Neighbourhoods. People from different continents attended the webinar session and shared their thoughts, ideas, and experiences regarding the topic.
Onesmus Mutuku facilitated a 3-day workshop at l’Afrikana, a community-based organisation that, among other activities, facilitates sharing and learning to prevent teenage pregnancies.
The team explored SALT, home visits, and action plans.
The short movie ‘Dorcus beads: Bringing back Life’ was launched on Saturday 13 November, online for a small international audience and offline in the community in presence of the new filmmakers and local movie stars. Communities share their own story: that is now possible.
“V-GLF—a spark plug for learning from the Community.” “We are not telling what to do, but we share what we do.” “First time ever interacting with people all over the world. It was overwhelming. I did learn about the work of different organisations, especially during COVID times and how they carry out their SALT process with the communities.”
More participants feedback
Photo: The participants of the All Women Aboard SALT-CLCP training guide us in how the training is shaped. As we were sharing thoughts and feelings, a participant proposed to sit on the floor, just as it is done in Syria. This picture shows how the atmosphere within...
The second day of the V-GLF, participants were invited to dive into communities in Kenya in real time as if they were in the homes and villages on the spot, asking questions directly, then synthesising the lessons learnt and experiences, by teams then in plenary.
We visited communities and homes in Kithituni, Iiani and in Khumbuni, and the Dorcus Beads organization.
Less then 2 weeks to go to the Virtual Global Learning Festival!
Update number 2 for participating teams and individuals.
Warm Up message 1, for participants in The Constellation Global Learning Festival.
Thirteen local SALT teams and 20 individual SALT supporters, a total of 60 individuals, have enthusiastically registered for the V-GLF that will take place between the 1st and 4th of October 2021. The teams come from Belgium, the Netherlands, Pakistan, India, Singapore, RDC, Burundi, Indonesia, Uganda, and the USA. They will share and learn from their very diverse experience with community actions on global issues and especially from the Kenyan team and communities. During virtual SALT visits, the communities in Kenya will also share what they are proud of and what they have learned.
In The Constellation’s project “Visual Journey”, we are handing the camera and microphone to the community, so that they fully take ownership of their story and how they tell it. After two months of online training in filming, the young team in Kenya, Anthony, Francis, and Florence, now feel confident. They have started filming beautiful scenes, and they have done the first interviews in their community. Anthony says: “We were excited about the interviews. Actually, we were having a normal conversation – through the lens of a camera.”
Dorcus Beads is one of the communities that The Constellation will visit during its annual Global Learning Festival (virtually, this year) and that will capture their Visual Journey.
We are pleased to share with you The Constellation 2020 Report: https://the-constellation.org/the-constellation-report-2020-english
“2020. Covid-19 put the world upside down. The ‘normal’ in the lives of organisations, communities, neighbourhoods, families, and individuals was challenged. Also, for The Constellation, its teams, its partners and its members. This annual report makes a tour around the world and the account makes us hopeful.”
The Constellation is developing a new film project called Visual Journey. It is inspired by the lessons learned from the As You Open Your Eyes film project.
The facilitation team at their After-Experience Reflection on the first day of the SALT-CLCP virtual training for Beyond Social Services Singapore. Gerlita Condino-Enrera and Myrna Alvarez Maglahus of Pinoy Competence (The Constellation in the Philippines),...
Go Girl! Virtual SALT visit of local teams from three continents to the Cho Ngafor foundation in Cameroon
Under the Go Girl project, local teams from three continents made a virtual SALT visit to the Cho Ngafor foundation and talk of menstruation.
The Triodos Foundation contributes 10’000 Euro to the multi-country project for teenagers. And inspiration from a Virtual SALT visit to Babes, Singapore.
The Global Learning Festival (GLF), leading event facilitated by The Constellation, is this year organised online in response to the need for international connections and continued work despite the pandemic. From 1 to 4 October 2021 The Constellation and Kenyan communities offer a unique opportunity to share and learn around the theme: ‘ANCHORING ENERGY FOR A SUSTAINABLE LOCAL RESPONSE’.
During 2020, eight neighbours in Amsterdam-East followed the SALT-CLCP training, online when required. They were accompanied during one year by a coaching team of The Constellation. Two inclusive projects by neighbours for the neighbourhood have started.
RICPHI report improvement in behaviour towards better health thanks to community conversations, peers/family support and community engagement.
Hope, connection, resilience, respect, challenges and Coiwepo*. When The Constellation Board Committee reflected on 2020, they found those words were both our strength and our challenge this past year. “We will bring all the good things that we learned from it with full energy into the new year”.
On the 8th of December 2004 the founding members of The Constellation formulated their dream: We would stimulate and connect local responses around the world. Happy birthday to us!
Stories of change are part of the mixed method evaluation of the effectiveness of the SALT-CLCP approach for enhanced community ownership of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). Patients and health workers share how SALT impacts their lives.
The older persons in Entebbe are one step closer to living their dream, as Uganda opens a unique Wisdom Centre! The centre is a safe space for young and old.
The Constellation is proud to contribute a chapter with learning about SALT-CLCP in the recent book publication Achieving Health for All: Primary Health Care in Action, edited by David Bishai and Meike Schleiff.
Ghalia and iSiZ from VrouwenCafé Amsterdam sought advise from CLCP-SALT facilitators in a peer-assist: How can we make sure there are equal opportunities for all to contribute in the production of a creative performance?
SALT was used with participatory action research to respond to bonded labour and to alcohol abuse in the state of Bihar, India, where all alcohol consumption is stigmatised and illegal.
The Community Engagement Centre (CEC) and the Shirkat Gah Women’s Resource Centre used the strength approach of SALT to a bilateral learning experience about living with COVID. This meant unlearning some of the conventional research practices and getting the hang of reflexivity* as a tool to monitor one’s own learning.
In Amsterdam a group of neighbours have found in SALT visits a good tool to stay inspired during lockdown. They learned from others, about sustaining connections in the neighbourhood, both online and offline.
Roots of Hope stimulates youth entrepreneurship in Burundi with SALT-CLCP. This impressive harvest of colocase by one of the youth has made people curious to know how he was able to obtain it.
BelCompetence (BC) celebrated with joy its 10th anniversary and the family spirit that unites its members.
Youths in Valenciennes have their own Development Council. The Constellation Belgium helped the group to build a common dream for Valenciennes and to reflect on how to materialise it. Thereby was born the project of the Talents Festival of the Valenciennes Region. COVID-19 has turned the action plan upside down, but the path was worth it.