Girls take part in a class as part of Girls Building Bridges, a project run by partner UCF. Girls Building Bridges is a competencies for life programme in a poor suburb of Luanda, the capital of Angola.
We promote access to rights and resources, particularly to land, housing and civic space, and we also work with young people, churches and faith leaders on gender equity and peacebuilding.
This work also encompasses social, political, economic and environmental resilience, ranging from early warning systems and preparedness to disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.
Our work currently concentrates on six key strategic partners that work in five provinces in the centre and south-east of Angola.
Our aim is to promote more justice in the use of power at all levels to build real, lasting peace, and sustainable development, for an Angola better for all.
- Principles and practices of human rights are more visible and civic spaces are maintained and/or widened.
- Human rights defenders and human rights organisations are better protected and strengthened.
- Women and girls in communities, groups and organisations have increased participation, decision making and fulfilment of rights.
- Land tenure and housing rights more secure for poor women and men.
- Poor and marginalised people better able to successfully manage resources, opportunities and risks and to cope with political, economic, social and climate crisis.
- Leadership demonstrates values and principles of reconciliation, justice and peace.
In Angola we work on...
For Angola to experience a true and durable peace and sustained development, which benefits everybody, there needs to be more justice in the use of power at all levels.
Citizenship and human rights
We work to give a voice to young and marginalised people by increasing dialogue with powerholders, widening civic spaces and through information and media projects.
We support organisations that promote poor communities’ land rights, participation and sustainable development to guarantee secure and resilient livelihoods.
We support work with girls and young women in competencies for life, and with boys and young men on positive masculinities.
Together with our partners we apply power analysis, facilitate peace clubs, take forward “memory and reconciliation” processes and promote values-based leadership.
Christian Aid partner SOS Habitat supports poor and marginalised communities in Luanda to document, publicise and challenge the human rights abuses they suffer, including illegal evictions, and to lobby for fair access to land, housing and basic services. Following years of work with the communities and campaigning, many evictions have been halted and local administrations have begun to rehouse hundreds of displaced families.
A 'new life' in Luanda participatory video
This participatory video was shot in December 2014 by communities supported by SOS Habitat.
Life skills and gender equity
Our partner UCF (Women’s Christian Union) runs a life skills programme to empower and educate young girls living in poor communities in Luanda. The girls learn about self-esteem, decision-making and assertiveness, human rights, health and wellbeing, as well as practical skills such as information and communication technology (ICT), maths and English.
Each year, nearly 200 young girls are supported to set goals for the future, make positive decisions about their life, and develop the practical skills to be able to achieve these In recognition of the outstanding success of the programme, 12 of these girls, aged between 11 and 15, won the prestigious International Diana Award on behalf of all participants.
IECA (Evangelical Congregational Church of Angola) helps rural communities develop food security, build sustainable livelihoods and adapt to climate change through education and integrated rural development. Communities have now adopted climate-resilient agricultural practices and introduced diverse, drought-resistant crops, greatly increasing their food security.
In addition, community members now have access to basic services, including education; water, sanitation and health (WASH) services; preventative healthcare; and pre- and post-natal health services. As a result, communities demonstrate much higher levels of literacy, and infant mortality rates have been significantly reduced.
Irish Aid Programme Grant (IAPG)
The Angola programme is a recipient of the Irish Aid Programme Grant (IAPG). One focus of this work is to ensure the principles and practices of human rights are visible and respected, and that civic spaces are maintained to allow for active citizenship. We work with poor and marginalised communities to raise awareness of human rights abuses through various media and initiatives, and to lobby authorities to fulfil their duties to citizens.
The IAPG also funds work in tackling violence and building peace, which is closely linked to human rights initiatives. The programme works with communities that have been victims of illegal land grabbing and evictions to reclaim their rights, demand compensation and prevent further incidents. In addition, the programme supports the strengthening and protection of Human Rights Defenders, as well as conflict resolution and the development of a culture of peace at both community and wider levels.
Joint IAPG- and Christian Aid-funded skills programme
We are supporting 200 young girls from the Cazenga municipality of Luanda to develop the competencies for life and the practical skills to overcome poverty and challenge deeply entrenched gender norms, along with discriminatory and harmful practices in their families, schools, churches and wider community. We also work with young boys in this same community to raise awareness about gendered social norms, promote healthy relationships and encourage positive masculinities.
Rural development and resilience programme
Christian Aid’s Angola Programme works with communities in Kuanza Sul and Kuando Kubango to
- actively manage key agricultural and natural resources,
- promote and facilitate access to essential health, education and water and sanitation services, and
- promote citizenship and peace, and just power relations.
We aim to increase household income and security, including proactive adaptation to climate change, and to enable poor and marginalised women and men to manage their own livelihoods, risks and resources.
This work has been supported by Comic Relief, an individual donor and Christian Aid funds, and we hope to receive additional funding from Bread for the World to continue this work in coalition with ACT alliance colleagues Norwegian Church Aid (NCA) and Lutheran World Federation (LWF).
For Teresa Jamba, 23, a home means the chance to start her own business. She lives in one of 50 new homes built for a community of street children in Lobito by the local administration following years of advocacy and campaigning by our partner Omunga.