2014 Advocacy Goals

HLP Photo Low ResThanks to everyone for your improvements to our draft. As of today, January 31, 2014, here are our advocacy goals.

  1. Set Strong Post-2015 Goals. We need to keep the pressure on the Open Working Group members to live up to the promise of the High-Level Panel report, particularly with strong stand-alone goals on gender, climate resilient and sustainable food and nutrition security, and transparent, participatory local governance.
  2. Achieve the MDGs. We must keep up pressure for more rapid progress on the MDGs that are lagging – particularly maternal and child health.
  3. Close the gender gap for women small-scale farmers. This is the International year of the Family Farmer and the Africa Year of Agriculture, but most policies fail to meet the “Boserup Test” – unless the majority of resources go to women, then the policy is making matters worse by widening the gender gap.
  4. Reform policies that hurt small farmers. Food aid and developed-country farm subsidies hurt small farmers and tax payers alike. Current fiscal austerity makes these reforms more politically achievable – such as the recent US budget agreement that made significant reforms to food aid.
  5. Empower women as the key to 1000-Day Nutrition. This is a big year for nutrition, with the ICN2 and the Zero Hunger Challenge – and yet the fundamental cause of poor 1000-Day Nutrition is too often ignored.
  6. Create funding windows for integrated rural development. Most donors are now starting to get the message that co-location of basic services and multisectoral/holistic approaches make huge sense. Yet nearly all funding focuses on single sectors. Now is the time to change this, and hopefully our Yale/Ghana study will provide us with major ammunition.
  7. Go to national scale. It is time to mobilize all actors to work together in campaign mode to bring successful approaches to everyone.
  8. Build CSO Platforms and CSO Policy Engagement. NGOs like us will only have powerful influence in policymaking when we have professionally staffed, rapid-response platforms to work through. We need to keep pressing donors to invest in these platforms, and for governments to establish stronger protocols for CSO engagement in policy formation.
  9. Strengthen Social Accountability. Recent research shows that when communities have information (transparency, social media) and when mandatory mechanisms for social accountability are actually held (village assemblies), governance and public services improve – even in an absence of capacity building. Our communities are showcases for this, and we need policies that ensure every citizen is able to exercise these rights.
  10. Breakthrough in Rural Youth Enterprise Development. This is both a programmatic and advocacy imperative – of all the impacts that our programs have, this is one of the least-well documented and analyzed.