The Ministry of Health (MOH), supported by the International Organisation for Migrants (IOM) office in Algeria, initiated this project to improve access to care and health for People in Socially Vulnerable Situations (PSVS): people at risk of social, cultural, or economic barriers, in particular migrants who are in an illegal situation on Algerian territory (50,000 and 75,000 people according to the IOM, 42% of them intend to settle in Algeria). Between February and September 2022, The Constellation’s mission was to encourage Algerian civil society and health professionals directly involved in the care of PSVS to design in synergy a strategy based on their experience and implement it.
The intervention of The Constellation was carried by four The Constellation coaches in five steps.
At the first face-to-face training in Algiers, from the 21st to the 24th of February 2022, 33 participants acquired knowledge and practice of the SALT-CLCP methodology and made two field visits.
Find out more here: https://the-constellation.org/improving-the-health-of-migrants-in-algeria/
Between March and June 2022, the coaches were available online to accompany the participants in the Algiers training in using SALT-CLCP in their context in 4 cities (Algiers, Annaba, Tamanrasset, and Oran). Eight groups were coached. They used this opportunity to strengthen their organisations and collaboration between organisations, creating new networks.
At the second face-to-face training in the 4 cities, from the 12th to the 15th of June 2022, 71 people were trained as it was done in Algiers. A complementary training of the facilitators trained in February also took place in Algiers during the same mission.
,Between mid-June to early September 2022, each coach was available online to accompany the new facilitators of the 4 cities.
At the Learning Festival in Algiers, from the 12th to the 14th of September 2022, the new facilitators from the 5 cities learned and shared their lessons from the SALT-CLCP experience in 10 stands (associations, volunteers, artists, LGBTQ, children (mental health, disability), people living with HIV/AIDS, migrants). They visited each other’s stands to pick up ideas to be implemented and propagated, for instance, the know-how necessary for the sustainability of the process. The event strengthened links and exchanges between Algerian groups.
104 people were trained to apply the methodology in their activities:
• 60 women and 44 men;
• 23 live in Algiers, 15 in Annaba, 19 in Bejaia, 24 in Oran, 20 in Tamanrasset, 1 in Tizi Ouzou, and 2 in Tiaret;
• 45,3 from civil society, 42,1 health professionals, 9,5 migrants, 3,1 OIM staff members.
That is 38% more people than expected. Not all those who were trained applied the methodology in their activities, but the first period of support (between February and June 2022) showed that a range of different activities were stimulated after the first training.
SALT visits stimulate and support the appropriation of the steps of the Community Life Competence Process while stimulating constant and sustainable progress of the community towards its dream:
9 dreams were about improving their organisation, 7 about improving access to health care, and 5 about improving social and economic integration for vulnerable populations. The eleven groups of facilitators carried out 31 SALT visits to 21 communities spread over the 5 cities. They visited 7 groups of migrants, 5 LGBTQ associations and 9 other associations/volunteers/communities. It was an opportunity for the new facilitators to strengthen their organisational, coordination and networking skills.
Impact of SALT-CLCP is visible at three levels: at the facilitator’s level, at the community level and at a social level.
The know-how and soft skills of the SALT-CLCP methodology had an impact on the personal lives of the facilitators.
“I’ve applied SALT to myself and my family… I’ve given the best of myself… I’ve surpassed myself.”
SALT-CLCP was a catalyst for promoting collaboration and teamwork between actors involved in the same field.
“We agreed to work together … A dream that went viral… The Algerian Red Crescent in Algiers has grown from 3 committees to 5…”
The SALT visits allowed communities to share their experiences and pool their knowledge to face the challenges. In addition, vulnerable populations who live with the feeling of being marginalised and excluded regained confidence in themselves and in others. They have a new vision for their lives.
“Knowing that there are other people with the same experience [living with HIV/AIDS] in the same city generates a sense of relief, hope and belonging for the different participants.”
Finally, these visits allowed communities, through the facilitators’ empathy and reflective listening, to feel that they are valued in society.
“…No one asked us about our dream, what we experienced, or tried to understand us as you do now, …everything will change from now on, our relationship is not the same anymore…”
Facilitators witness that family members spend more time together in dialogue and sharing their concerns to find joint solutions to the challenges they face.
The facilitators influenced the mentality of the people around them to be more open and accepting of the other, despite differences.
The new way of working and connections allowed them to reach more beneficiaries and to respond adequately and appropriately to their real needs.
At the end of this process, we believe that this initiative was effective because, on the one hand, its impact was tangible on the beneficiaries and, on the other hand, 96% think that the training, especially the festival, will be useful for them and 86.6% of them believe that the SALT-CLCP methodology will be useful or even extremely useful in their professional and personal life.
Some participants referred to the forthcoming use of specific tools such as SALT visits, After Experience Reflection, Self Assessment and Action Plans. All this indicates that the sustainability of this action will be ensured especially in the voluntary sector.
Most participants call for more, longer, and more in-depth training and coaching to gain more experience.
The project essentially took place over 8 months, and it is certain that the time spent accompanying facilitators during the implementation of their SALT-CLCP activities may seem relatively short. However, this group has understood the importance of integrating SALT to improve their interactions with migrant and/or vulnerable groups. They understood the importance of a necessary change from expert to facilitator. In addition, 100% of the participants say that they would like to see a network set up to make their services more effective, to increase their experience, to keep in touch, especially with remote facilitators, and to continue to exchange especially during similar events.
Improving access to health care for migrants and vulnerable populations in Algeria
Communities: 21 communities spread over 5 cities: 7 groups of migrants, 5 LGBTQ associations and 9 other associations/volunteers/communities.
Facilitators trained: 104
The Constellation coaches : Dolores Rey, Luc Barriere-Constantin, Marlou de Rouw, and Taha Maatoug
Contract with Ministry of Health (MOH), supported by the International Organisation for Migrants (IOM)
Place: Algiers, Annaba, Bejaia, Oran, and Tamanrasset
Period: February – September 2022