Publication Date

2011

Degree Name

MA in Sustainable Development

First Advisor

John VogelsangThe following is a case study conducted over six months in rural Sierra Leone, examining the effectiveness of training-based development interventions. Research was conducted in conjunction with a program offered by the Polio Persons Development Association (POPDA) at a branch office in Makeni, northern Sierra Leone. A total of 35 association members, organized into five business groups, participated in the training. The case study was based upon both qualitative and quantitative data collected through informal interviews, data collection from documentation, observation, and participant feedback. The research has the potential to offer insight into several key areas of development: the effectiveness of training-based initiatives, the pairing of skills development with additional development interventions, and the integration of marginalized groups into economic and social development. The study found that, in this particular case, the training-based program had several ramifications for all participants involved. Participants increased their overall level of knowledge, acquired and learned to use new skills, and were able to qualify for small business loans through a local micro-finance institution. The long-term expected results are an increase in business profit leading to a reduction in participant poverty levels and an increase in the social and economic inclusion of participants, hopefully leading to greater success for the organization’s advocacy programs. It was concluded that, while it is by no means a comprehensive method towards poverty alleviation, training-based programs conducted in the right manner, and in appropriate situations, can positively affect trainees.

Abstract

The following is a case study conducted over six months in rural Sierra Leone, examining the effectiveness of training-based development interventions. Research was conducted in conjunction with a program offered by the Polio Persons Development Association (POPDA) at a branch office in Makeni, northern Sierra Leone. A total of 35 association members, organized into five business groups, participated in the training. The case study was based upon both qualitative and quantitative data collected through informal interviews, data collection from documentation, observation, and participant feedback. The research has the potential to offer insight into several key areas of development: the effectiveness of training-based initiatives, the pairing of skills development with additional development interventions, and the integration of marginalized groups into economic and social development. The study found that, in this particular case, the training-based program had several ramifications for all participants involved. Participants increased their overall level of knowledge, acquired and learned to use new skills, and were able to qualify for small business loans through a local micro-finance institution. The long-term expected results are an increase in business profit leading to a reduction in participant poverty levels and an increase in the social and economic inclusion of participants, hopefully leading to greater success for the organization’s advocacy programs. It was concluded that, while it is by no means a comprehensive method towards poverty alleviation, training-based programs conducted in the right manner, and in appropriate situations, can positively affect trainees.

Disciplines

Business Administration, Management, and Operations | Civic and Community Engagement | Entrepreneurial and Small Business Operations | Growth and Development | Other Education | Work, Economy and Organizations

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