Integration - More than just adding more pieces!

We had a very inspiring visit to Ethiopia last week with IIRR and partners who have been working hard at integrating elements of ACP into their existing Community Managed Risk Reduction (CMDRR) Strategy.  You will see the excellent photos and video clips that Ricardo has been uploading over the past couple of days.


It got me thinking about the word 'integration'.  Seems everyone is using it these days, and as with many things we start saying it and stop thinking deeply about what it really means.


What I saw and learned from the visit in Ethiopia about integration:


*  It's hard work, but possible

*  adding on 'activities' is easy, but internalizing the reasons why we do what we do, so that our actions reflect a consistency between belief and practise is much harder

*  integration is about a + that speaks to added value, not just more things to do

*  communities and people in their homes and families act in much more integrated ways then we do as organisations

*  integration is about wholeness - not being fragmented in the way we think and behave


Congratulations to the team members in Ethiopia who I believe have demonstrated this integration and can share that lesson with others - listen to the video clips and you will see what I mean!



Nairobi, Kenya


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Comment by Rituu B. Nanda on April 1, 2011 at 7:15pm

Hi April,


Thanks for this blog. The challenge for me as a facilitator has been if community dreams will include project priorities. For instance HIV might not be the priority for a community. Rafique has written a lot on this and has also successfully applied CLCP with targeted intervention project of CARE on HIV and migrants. One of his many blogs is



Comment by Gaston on April 1, 2011 at 11:01am
I like this reflection April as I have been thinking about this issue before as well. Especially when I facilitated an event with UNFPA Indonesia to 'mainstream CLCP' into their plan. Similar challenges came up. If it's just 'adding activities' it will not work and people will feel burdened by additional 'things to do'.

I saw the pictures of Ricardo. Beautiful and it visualises the deep reflection that ACP often brings inside a community. Will watch the videos this weekend!


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