Master's Projects of the class of 2012
Students in UNH’s Master of Arts in Development Policy and Practice take a four-course sequence in Project Design, Implementation, Management, and Evaluation – and put theory into practice through a major applied project in their area of interest. Many of these initiatives are multi-year efforts that were launched through this 14-month project.
Tyler Mac Innis – Ensuring Sustainability and Profitability in New Hampshire’s Fishery
The sustainability of local, independent fishers operating in New Hampshire’s fishery is challenged by an influx in external competition, evolving markets, and rising costs of operation. My project seeks to maintain New Hampshire’s fishery by implementing a series of initiatives to help local fishers better adapt to the changing industry landscape and remain competitive – including the establishment of a second fishing cooperative in order to insulate fishers from the costs of operation, an expansion in processing capacity, better access to local markets, and increased knowledge and skills in direct marketing. This project will work with independent fishers, processors, buyers and distributers, as well as area business owners, local food advocates, and community organizations in order to ensure a well-rounded and holistic approach to implementation. Watch a video of Tyler talking about his project.
Robin Husslage – Dolores Women’s Cacao Project
The women cacao farmers living in the remote Mayan village of Dolores, Belize, are unable to access the organic cacao market in Punta Gorda with improved commodity prices in order to increase their incomes above subsistence levels. This project is designed to sustainably increase the incomes of 49 women cacao farmers, allowing them to provide for their family’s healthcare and education needs by providing the training, support, and tools required for increasing the quantity and quality of their processed cacao beans. This includes new facilities (nursery, fermentation and drying), quality control/tracking procedures, and the safe storage and transportation of beans to access premium Fair Trade pricing.
Shukri Warsame – Education in Puntland: A System of Hope and Great Challenges
Due to severe managerial, technical, and financial resource limitations, there are considerable disparities in the quality of and access to education for schoolchildren in the Puntland region of Somalia. There is also a considerable gender inequality gap, with males significantly outnumbering females in enrollment rates. In order to improve the ability for girls to participate or continue their education, my project will offer events for parents and other community members to increase their awareness of the value of education and also organize groups that would then advocate for equal access to education. My project also will increase the ability of schools to provide high-quality education by organizing skills workshops to improve teaching ability and by promoting the utilization of uniform curriculum.
Samuel Albino – Citizenship Support in Portland
A significant number of elderly South Sudanese residents of Portland, ME, are unable to acquire U.S. citizenship. Because of this, some of them lose federal benefits after seven years, are limited in their ability to travel to their country of origin to re-connect with family, are unable to invite family members to travel to the U.S., and are unable to participate in local and federal elections. My project addresses the causes of the problem, namely, lack of educational background from childhood, limited English language skills, and impairment and chronic illnesses brought about by advanced age.
Lado Lodoka – Playground at Atlabara West Basic School
Children in primary schools in the Juba District of South Sudan have few opportunities to engage in structured physical activity in school, thereby limiting their ability to socialize in a play-based setting outside of the classroom. Because of this, some children are less motivated to attend school. My project addresses this gap by coordinating with school officials, teachers and parents to generate, install and maintain playground facilities in these schools – thereby increasing group socialization opportunities and decreasing incidents of low self-esteem, depression, lack of classroom concentration, poor grades, cognitive delay, and school drop out.
Elizabeth Dodson – Yap Animal Welfare Project
My project provides resources and education to allow the residents of Yap, a small island in Micronesia, to humanely care for and control the overpopulation of animals. My project works with the Yapese to create laws to punish abuse/neglect of animals as well as educate the communities on the detrimental effects exposure to these actions has on children. The project also works to set up a facility and resources for veterinarian services, create curriculum for animal welfare education for the schools, and present to legislature the need for containment laws for animals on island.
Hibak Kalfan - The African Future’s Response to the Horn of Africa Famine and Beyond
The African Future (TAF), a Somali relief organization that I co-founded in 2008, reacted to the massive famine in the Horn of Africa during the summer and fall of 2011 by feeding over 50,000 Somalis along the Kenyan and Ethiopian borders and allowing for most Somalis to stay within their country. My MADPP project reflects on TAF’s reaction to the famine; builds systems and a 2012 strategic plan for TAF; and begins to develop and implement an array of new programming in Somalia. It is a long-term project intended to evolve into future strategic plans and programming. Watch a video of Hibak talking about her project.
Sope Ogunrinde – Mulheres Mil of Valenca: Women’s Health Training Course
In Valenca, in the Northeastern state of Bahia in Brazil, many women abandon school to learn and assist their family’s fishing operations – then struggle to enter the formal labor sector. Begun in 2005, the Mulheres Mil project works with a specific marginalized population: young and mature women, poorly educated, socially and economically vulnerable and excluded from the labor market. My project’s goals are to improve the women’s education, to offer them professional qualifications, and to help them to enter the labour market. Beyond these immediate goals, the program also changes the women helps them to rediscover their citizenship, thereby restoring their self-esteem and improving their family and community relations.
Saharla Hassan – Immigrant Parent Educational Support Structure
Parents belonging to a community of recent immigrants in Seattle, WA, are incapable of providing school-related support to their children, thereby affecting the latter's ability to perform well in school. My project will address factors that impede parents from providing school-related support, including increasing parents' knowledge of the American educational system and skills in the English language and improving teachers’ awareness of the students' situation at home.
Amy Cunningham – NEH Challenge Grant Proposal for Ethics & Civic Engagement Initiative, UNH Honors Program
The University of New Hampshire’s undergraduate core curriculum lacks an engaged citizenship component that is credit bearing and connected to academics. My project is to develop a citizen engagement requirement as part of the undergraduate core curriculum – connecting students to opportunities that help them to understand, and critically reflect upon the issues that shape the choices they face as citizens.
Lina Bowden – Sta Angela Center: Restaurant & Youth Training Center
The community of Jose Leonardo Ortiz is the poorest district of the city of Chiclayo in Peru, where infrastructure and proper services (such as proper housing, sanitation, paved roads and sewage systems) are greatly lacking. Through development of a restaurant and youth training center, my project will enable youth (ages 17-24) to develop skills (both human development skills and technical job skills) that will help them secure a stable source of income. It will also enable the district’s citizens to receive low cost, nutritious meals and community events. The project team will establish a restaurant in the civic square by September 2012. In its second year, the restaurant will begin a youth training program in restaurant management and in its third year the center hopes to be self-sustaining. Watch a video of Lina talking about her project.
Joseph Alip – High-Tech Solution for Informed Decision-Making in a Mutual Benefit Association
Due to the lack of a management information system (MIS) structure, Mutual Benefit Associations (MBAs) are not able to make well-informed decisions when it comes to managing the funds entrusted to them by the members/clients. Quidan Pag-Inupdanay MBA is an NGO based in Bacolod City, Negros Occidental in the Philippines. They cater to the micro insurance needs of some 25,000 clients. The clients are from the low income sector, earning less than $100 monthly. My project intends to put in place a software solution which consolidates and processes data into meaningful reports. Having a credible and reliable MIS in place will help the management make informed decisions in safeguarding the mutual funds of the low income sector. Project activities include conducting capacity building trainings for the local NGO staff, and enlisting the support of funders to establish a potent MIS.
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