Lyambai project workshop strengths and weaknesses

Submitted by Sukaina Bharwani | published 25th Mar 2011 | last updated 13th Jan 2020
Please note: content is older than 5 years


Identified strengths

  • The workshop succeeded in bringing together a wide cross-section of community stakeholders in a single forum to discuss issues that are of common interest but which to date are not shared by many of the stakeholder groups concerned.
  • The workshop brought the difficulties of communicating the changing dynamics of climate and the potential impacts on local lives and livelihoods to a range of meteorological and climate scientists, govt. resource departmental representatives, institutions of national and traditional governance and representatives from civil society and the media on a stage that prioritised participation from the vulnerable communities in the case study areas featured.
  • The workshop infused the idea of a ‘team effort’ in now obtaining more information on the risks facing the region and on disseminating the information that is available to those affected in meaningful and useful ways to assist with the building of capacity to take adaptive actions.
  • Holding the workshop in the heart of the affected region, whilst difficult logistically, greatly improved the effectiveness of awareness raising compared to holding it in the national capital where people feel a sense of disconnection and where rural villagers with little time and other social constraints often feel intimidated of going.



Identified weaknesses

  • The level of attendance and participation from the villages was too low. This was partly due to insufficient suitable individuals being identified and invited and also due to a failure of transport in some cases.
  • Language was identified as a barrier to maximal communication during the workshop. While the vernacular was used in the breakout sessions and translators were employed to translate the presentations made in English to the non-English speakers, there was insufficient time for a full understanding of issues that very often could not be translated into the vernacular due to lack of equivalent vocabulary.
  • The workshop was held in a hall without air conditioning or sufficient fans which meant that by mid-afternoon, people were wilting in the heat (Western province is approaching its warmest season at the time the workshop was held). Whilst equipment and electricity is a recognised scarcity in the region, it would perhaps be wiser to hold any future events of this nature in the winter season after the annual flood has receded (July-August).
  • The workshop did not give sufficient indication of how the second phase of the project leading to adaptive actions in the villages concerned would be enacted.