On the Ground


For those committed to improving two-way communication and community engagement for greater accountability to people affected by crisis, the CDAC Network offers a varied curriculum of Technical Training in Communication and Community Engagement. This training provides practical advice on how to increase the effectiveness of humanitarian aid efforts by involving affected communities in the response.

These trainings have been developed using experience and knowledge gained in numerous emergencies over the last 10 years and are designed to be used by those seeking to improve the outcomes for disaster affected people and wishing to be at the forefront of the Participation Revolution.

The modular advanced courses give practical learning in how to apply community engagement skills and techniques to build trust and accountability with all stakeholders. By integrating such skills and techniques, one can significantly increase impact and sustainability of a response.

The CDAC Network's current Training Offers; available online, remotely, and personalised

Basic technical training in Communication, Community Engagement and Accountability (CCEA)
This is an introductory CDAC Network course in the use of CCE tools and techniques. It gives participants a foundation knowledge in the use of community communication and community engagement in humanitarian programming, particularly with regards to the benefits of two-way communication and better accountability. This course is recommended for those with limited or no experience of communicating with communities. Participants may come from national and international NGOs, UN agencies, governments, donors and private sector actors involved in or planning to become involved in communicating with communities. Participation is encouraged from staff from all response sectors as these crosscutting skills are applicable all work involving affected people. It is also suitable for emergency deployment roster/surge staff. Topics covered include:

  • two-way communication between humanitarian actors and affected people
  • including participation in humanitarian response
  • the use of complaints and feedback mechanisms
  • engaging in collaboration across humanitarian sectors to provide coordinated communication
  • providing information in appropriate forms to disaster-affected peoples
  • gathering data and accountability information in an effective and appropriate way

This course can also provide a lead into the advanced technical training course outlined below.

Advanced Technical Training in CCEA
This Advanced Technical Training has been designed for field and technical staff who have completed the CDAC Network basic technical training in community engagement (see above), and for senior staff or those on deployment rosters with awareness of CCE, but who need a deeper knowledge to increase the effectiveness of programme outcomes. Alongside more advanced practical training in the topics covered in the basic course, the training also includes:

  • The early assessment of local culture, communities, and affected persons.
  • The planning, implementation and management of feedback collection systems and the dissemination of information.
  • The implementation of communication and community engagement using media and non-media systems.
  • Mainstreaming CCE within your own programming and with partner organisations and coordinating bodies.
  • Coordination exercises in managing CCE over a response.

The training focuses on how better CCEA can improve trust and accountability with all stakeholders, and how accomplishing this facilitates the leveraging of available resources to increase the impact of a response.

Training for senior in-country CCE coordinators
The coordination of Communication, Community Engagement and Accountability (CCEA) among implementing partners has often been highlighted as a key success factor in the successful implementation of community engagement and accountability. However recent CDAC Network research has noted that the soft skills needed to undertake coordination more effectively are wide-ranging and subtle, and not always easily learned. This training has been developed in response to this research and is designed to give people who will work in CCEA coordination, or for surge personnel who will need to do so at short notice, the key skills they will need when acting as coordinators, so they can build more resilient cooperative embedded partnerships in community engagement. These skills are:

  • To understand and be able to use the soft skills needed to effectively coordinate communication and community engagement
  • Use cooperative tools and techniques to facilitate coordination and enable collective action
  • Confidently facilitate a communication and community engagement working group to achieve results effectively and efficiently

In-country CCEA coordinators with these skills have been shown to be of great benefit to a humanitarian response in helping all parties to work together so that affected people have a better understanding of and involvement in the response.

Bespoke advanced training in CCEA
While the Advanced Technical Training in CCEA will improve skills, the CDAC Network is also able to develop and deliver bespoke training for organisations looking for training tailored specifically to their needs. Examples could include creating training tailored for work involving climate resilience, specific groups of vulnerable people, sectorial-focused work or for training to be integrated within a wider programme of capacity development. Please contact the CDAC Network if you would like us to develop specific and specialised CCE training for your work.

Briefing Module
In this two-hour module, participants receive an overview of what communication and community engagement is, why it is important, and how it feeds into improving accountability and participation. Download the Briefing Module

Online CDAC e-learning course: Communication is aid
An introductory, and free, three-hour e-learning course that introduces the concept of communication as aid. It takes participants through a number of interactive scenarios to teach the basic elements of how to engage and provide information for affected communities and establish communication mechanisms for dialogue. This training is hosted on the Kaya portal by the Humanitarian Leadership Academy, this course can be taken on its own or as a precursor to other courses. Find out more: https://kayaconnect.org/course/info.php?id=768  

To find out more, commission training or provide feedback on our training opportunities, please contact us on training@cdacnetwork.org 

About the CDAC Network

The CDAC Network is a growing platform of more than 30 humanitarian, media development, social innovation, technology, and telecommunication organisations, dedicated to saving lives and making aid more effective through communication, information exchange and community engagement.

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