Community Based Reporting and Systems Strengthening for OVC Wellbeing
Community LINKS SMS Connect is an innovative program piloted in the Omaheke Region of Namibia which uses Frontline SMS and Ushahidi SMS technology in a multi-stakeholder, community driven initiative to strengthen local capacity to respond to the needs of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVCs), particularly in the areas of education, nutrition, and safety and security.
Responding to a call for a multi sectoral approach to reaching underserved OVC, Community LINKS mobilizes community based messengers who submit SMS via form enabled cellular phones to report on OVC well being. The SMS reports trigger a series of events including automatically generated replies with information/instructions for action, alerts, and reports so that constituency and regional OVC forums can better coordinate with the entire system including Ministries of Health (MOH), Education (MOE), and Gender Equality and Child Welfare (MGECW), local groups playing an ombudsman role, and other service providers at regional and national levels.

The data collected from this system helps build an evidence base for community learning, action, and engagement with the OVC forum system. The evidence base empowers the forum members to direct action on behalf of OVCs within their communities. The technology is only part of the equation. The real change agents are the Messengers, OVC Forum Members, Responders, and communities. Click to learn more about the people involved in the SMS Connect System

How It Works
Scroll over the graphic to learn about our approach.

Our Partners

Watch the Community LINKS Video to Learn More

From the Field

8-24-2011 Community Links - Monitoring the Worst Forms of Child Labor end of pilot learning and strategic planning workshop to be held in Windhoek. Root Change and the Legal Assistance Center will convene field and office staff, ILO representatives, relevant ministry officials, and other civil society stakeholders to learn from the Oshane and Caprivi pilots, and explore scale-up to other regions and countries.

4-16-2011 The C-LINKS team is developing a new project in collaboration with Legal Aid Centre in Namibia around effective monitoring and reporting of child labor abuses. The pilot will be launched in July 2011 in four constituencies in Northern Namibia.

3-20-2011 End of Omaheke pilot workshop to be held in Gobabis. The workshop will be convened by Namibia Development Trust, Pact Namibia, and the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare (MGECW). The workshop will bring together relevant OVC forum members, community leaders, messengers and responders to reflect on the pilot, assess successes and challenges, and develop an action plan for next steps.

Links and Resources

Community Links Ushahidi Site

Frontline SMS Webpage
NamChild! Wiki
Community Links Brochure Download

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