“There are big NGOs that I think do very good work, but when I did research around Congo and other countries what I saw, what I found, was that the people doing the best work, with the real expertise, who understood what was needed intuitively, just like they would in my neighborhood, who knew who the guy was to talk to, were community-based organizations .” – ECI Founder Ben Affleck
In the DRC, one of the biggest obstacles to delivering effective support to community-based organizations is the “information gap,” a lack of precise information about these organizations and their capacity to meet the most pressing needs of their communities. Last year, in response to the challenge, and with the support of USAID, ECI conducted a landscape analysis of community-based organizations across Maniema, Orientale, North Kivu and South Kivu provinces. The result is a report and online database of community-based organizations that gives policy leaders, investors and analysts insights into the work being done to create sustainable and successful change in Eastern Congo, straight from the Congolese people.
This week, in partnership with USAID, we also released an online video series featuring ECI’s founder Ben Affleck, along with some of our incredible grantees, who discuss the value of the landscape analysis and ECI’s community-based approach.
Our analysis found that many capable community-based organizations face serious challenges in getting the support they need, from organizations that remain stuck at the bottom of the funding chain to those that receive little attention because they focus on longer-term solutions instead of areas of immediate need. Our hope is that the online database will help these organizations and donors to overcome these challenges by cutting through the clutter to shine a light on those organizations that work to address the structural and cultural roots of the problems in Eastern Congo.
ECI, together with USAID, seeks to build a robust development alliance that channels the support of public entities, philanthropists, private sector companies and foundations to community-based organizations working on the ground in Eastern Congo.
Check out ECI’s new video series below: