Cooperation for Peace and Development (CPD) is an Afghan NGO aimed at bringing positive changes in perception and behavior of Afghans as the key to ensure Peace and Development through its agreed intervention strategies including awareness raising, civic education, capacity building, advocacy, research, campaigning and service delivery. Funded by Tawanmandi, CPD has implemented the project “Youth and Women for Promotion of National Anti-Corruption Strategy” to contribute in Afghan Anti-Corruption movement. Here are two success stories of the said intervention:
1. Use Simple Language to Influence your Audience!
Development of an awareness raising anti-corruption handbook has been part of the project milestones; during the process, we found that most of the written resources are fully in official language using complex and legal-professional terminology, which may not be clear and understandable for common Afghans and we recognized it as a reason for poor awareness of people on Anti-Corruption law and National Anti-Corruption strategy. Therefore, we changed the way of writing the handbook and developed it in a simple language for the public. In fewer cases like articles of Criminal Code, simplification was not applicable and we decided to explain them verbally during planned awareness raising sessions at Girl High Schools of Kabul province.
Key findings: Simplification and interpretation of legal documents and policy and strategy papers and transferring key messages in a very simple language, facilitate making a change through raising the level of people’s awareness.
2. Using Islamic/Sharia quotes, makes awareness raising impactful!
Poor awareness of the general public of the ruling laws paves the way to commit crimes including corruption. It is also true for the National Anti-Corruption Strategy. People even do not know enough of the types of corruption; they think, corruption means the bribery only and that’s why they do corrupt practices, but not recognizing it as a type of corruption.
By the other hand, poor rule of law and breaking the law by power holders have resulted in peoples eroded trust on proper implementation of laws. Therefore, Sharia and its orders to prevent corruption are of high importance and acceptable for people and we need to use them in our anti-corruption struggle to convince the public not committing the corruption and report corruption cases helping the relevant authorities in anti-corruption struggle.
In a workshop held for girl volunteers, we realized that most of the participants think that corruption means bribery and nothing else. We learned that awareness raising on anti-corruption is of most impact, when conveyed through Islamic and Sharia quotes and messages convincing the people easily and contributing in fighting the corruption.
A female teacher participated in the workshop said, “there were several types of corruption, I did not have information about it and was thinking that they were lawful practices. Now, I know, they are illegal and prohibited by Sharia and ruling laws and I would make commitment to avoid myself of such practices and will encourage others to do so.”