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Introduction

Hakikazi Catalyst is a Tanzanian economic and social justice advocacy organisation based in Arusha. Since 2000, we have developed an innovative approach to working for the social and economic rights of marginalised communities and individuals. Our basic belief is that knowledge can stimulate action for change.

We are best known for pioneering the use of plain language guides to policy, although these form only one aspect of a three level advocacy strategy.

The guides are the key tools of the first part of our strategy, which aims to encourage people to learn about and engage with the policies that affect their lives.

In producing the guides we aim to cater for a range of levels of readership. At the basic level, the text is kept as jargon free as possible and cartoons are included to illustrate key points of the policy being discussed. Meanwhile, for those who wish to dig deeper into the subject matter we provide pointers to further information in the form of weblinks.

The second part of our approach involves working with communities to strengthen governance and generate a common understanding of the implications of policy for livelihoods and local opportunities. This includes up-streaming community feedback into decision-making processes at local and national level, fostering a culture of participation and accountability, and encouraging action for change.

Our third approach is to participate in civil society networks at local and national level. We also network with faith based organisations, research institutes, academia, and trade unions, as well as government and the donor community.

Objectives

bulletTo promote public education that creates knowledge and understanding of poverty issues and policies and raise the awareness of the poor about their social and economic rights and responsibilities.
bulletTo facilitate processes of participation, transparency, and accountability that ensure choices and voices of poor communities are included in making decisions about key poverty reduction strategies.
bulletTo promote sustainable livelihoods and capabilities through processes that foster constructive dialogue and actions between the poor and all levels of government on issues affecting income and capability poverty.

Activities

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Acting as a local catalyst to empower marginalized people to have an effective voice in influencing decisions affecting their lives and achieving their civil and political rights at local, national and international level.

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Demystifying and disseminating policy related information.

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Researching, advocating and promoting sustainable livelihood and employment opportunities and disseminating knowledge empowering the poor to address problems of ignorance and poverty.

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Facilitating participatory processes which foster promotion of constructive dialogue between poor people and government, at all levels, about basic rights and sustainable livelihoods.

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Working in partnership with civil society to protect and strengthen the social capital and networks which enable the most vulnerable and socially excluded to participate in the development process.

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Constructing initiatives which build and strengthen civic groups and organisations.

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Monitoring and raising awareness about policies followed by government and donors in order to create an enabling environment for the growth of civil society and sustainable development.

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Offering a diverse range of capacity building support on the dynamics and skills required in the creation of change to CSOs, networks, NGOs, CBOs, mutual aid groups, common resource groups and non-governmental professional groups.

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