Blue Cross News

IBC External Evaluation

10.08.2021

International Blue Cross (IBC) has mandated the Swiss company RANAS to evaluate its projects in Chad and Congo as an expert advisor on human behavior change. This external evaluation assessed the life skills and peer education projects in Chad and Congo between 2017 and 2020 and reviewed the projects’ relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact and sustainability. By conducting desk review, key informant interviews, focus group discussions andinterviews with beneficiaries, evaluators were able to clearly determine that IBC’s work in Chad and Congo has a strong impact on substance abuse and related behaviours (sexual risk behaviours and GBV), the related knowledge and attitudes.The impact of IBC’s local work goes beyond the effect on beneficiaries, influencing communal, structural, and governmental levels by changing people’s perception about substance abuse and even encouraging legal changes.The evaluation underlined that the projects are highly relevant in both countriesand positively impacted the targeted groups. It also recommended that IBC’s work should be extended to more areas worldwide where populations are sufferingfrom substance abuse and related negative behaviours. Furthermore, the implemented projects were deemed sustainable and likely to maintain effects for a reasonable amount of time, as the behaviours are changed, leading to life-long improvements in the lives of beneficiaries, their familiesand communities. IBC is honored to have a positive impact which actively contributes to theachievement of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, in addition tocontribution to a more peaceful, just, and inclusive societies.

IBC External Evaluation

07.02.2021

International Blue Cross (IBC) has mandated the Swiss company RANAS to evaluate its projects in Chad and Congo as an expert advisor on human behavior change. This external evaluation assessed the life skills and peer education projects in Chad and Congo between 2017 and 2020 and reviewed the projects’ relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact and sustainability. By conducting desk review, key informant interviews, focus group discussions andinterviews with beneficiaries, evaluators were able to clearly determine that IBC’s work in Chad and Congo has a strong impact on substance abuse and related behaviours (sexual risk behaviours and GBV), the related knowledge and attitudes.The impact of IBC’s local work goes beyond the effect on beneficiaries, influencing communal, structural, and governmental levels by changing people’s perception about substance abuse and even encouraging legal changes.The evaluation underlined that the projects are highly relevant in both countriesand positively impacted the targeted groups. It also recommended that IBC’s work should be extended to more areas worldwide where populations are sufferingfrom substance abuse and related negative behaviours. Furthermore, the implemented projects were deemed sustainable and likely to maintain effects for a reasonable amount of time, as the behaviours are changed, leading to life-long improvements in the lives of beneficiaries, their familiesand communities. IBC is honored to have a positive impact which actively contributes to theachievement of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, in addition tocontribution to a more peaceful, just, and inclusive societies.

IBC External Evaluation

05.05.2021

International Blue Cross (IBC) has mandated the Swiss company RANAS to evaluate its projects in Chad and Congo as an expert advisor on human behavior change. This external evaluation assessed the life skills and peer education projects in Chad and Congo between 2017 and 2020 and reviewed the projects’ relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, impact and sustainability. By conducting desk review, key informant interviews, focus group discussions andinterviews with beneficiaries, evaluators were able to clearly determine that IBC’s work in Chad and Congo has a strong impact on substance abuse and related behaviours (sexual risk behaviours and GBV), the related knowledge and attitudes.The impact of IBC’s local work goes beyond the effect on beneficiaries, influencing communal, structural, and governmental levels by changing people’s perception about substance abuse and even encouraging legal changes.The evaluation underlined that the projects are highly relevant in both countriesand positively impacted the targeted groups. It also recommended that IBC’s work should be extended to more areas worldwide where populations are sufferingfrom substance abuse and related negative behaviours. Furthermore, the implemented projects were deemed sustainable and likely to maintain effects for a reasonable amount of time, as the behaviours are changed, leading to life-long improvements in the lives of beneficiaries, their familiesand communities. IBC is honored to have a positive impact which actively contributes to theachievement of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, in addition tocontribution to a more peaceful, just, and inclusive societies.

Self-help training in Botswana

07.15.2020

In the Republic of Congo, where we run our Life Skills programme, a peer-to-peer prevention programme has proven successful in sensitizing youth for appropriate behaviour to limit the spread of the virus. Youth participants of the “Generation 5S” (5S: sans drogue, sans alcohol, sans violence, sans VIH/SIDA, sans discrimination) use leaflets to sensitize their peers for correct behaviour. In a second step they encourage them to pass on the information to others, distributing leaflets to them and triggering a snowball-system.

Coping with the challenges of COVID-19

03.23.2020

A lot has happened in the past days. In most places around the world governments and local authorities are implementing policies of social isolation to protect people from the fast spread of the Coronavirus. All of us need to adapt now to the new circumstances and confront the challenges of the pandemic COVID-19.

The most important to us is to protecting the vulnerable from disease – and this more so now! In all IBC programmes the local safety measures are being implemented. Activities within our Life Skills programmes in Togo, Chad and the Republic of Congo are continuing to being implemented according to the respective country´s situation and strictly in accordance with the advises of the World Health Organisation on Covid19. Blue Cross organisations around the world are rolling up their sleeves to be creative and to find the best way to be at the service of their clients and partners.
The International Blue Cross team- and board members currently work flexibly from home, the office of the IBC Secretariat in Bern is only sporadically occupied. Hence you might not reach us via our office phone number. So, please write us an e-mail indicating how we can reach you and we are happy to get back to you.
A further consequence we drew from the actual situation is the postponement of the IBC General Assembly. Instead of October 2020, it will take place one year later, from 4 to 8 October in South Africa. We are hopeful that by then this global health emergency had been solved without causing too high numbers of casualties.

And let us all dare to think that this pandemic not only means isolation, disruption and suffering – it also is a chance to reflect on ourselves, our role in this world and lead us to new shores discovering how we can best learn, work and live together in the future.
 
We wish you and your loved ones that you safely go through these hard times.

In solidarity,

Your Team of International Blue Cross

Self-help training in Botswana

02.01.2020

Project preparation visit at Blue Cross Society Tanzania

01.15.2020

International Blue Cross works within good governance structures whilst implementing projects and programmes with its partners. This requires good project cycle management, throughout preparation and implementation of operational handbook that covers internal regulations, policies that steer professional code of conduct, administrative, human resources and finance management.

Between 27.11-4.12.2019 Anne Babb and Sonja Pönisch run this intensive workshop for Blue Cross Society Tanzania’s secretariat, board and volunteers. In addition we had meetings with key stakeholders. We visited the City Council department for NGO work and discussed the next steps of collaboration with developing life skills, community action and policy advocacy work. At Arusha Sober Houses we discussed collaboration for community action with leaders of NA based therapeutic community treatment model and we facilitated a discussion with two churches in order to find ways to reach vulnerable communities.

Blue Cross Tanzania enjoyed also learning basics of project cycle management and latest information about alcohol and drug harm, self-help and skills on creating change through behavioral prevention. Thank you for all at BC Tanzania for your warm hospitality and we wish you much strength and blessings for implementing all new things on your daily work!

Job adver: Alcohol and Drug Policy Advocacy Officer, 8hrs/week

05.11.2019

IBC looks for a committed and innovative drug and alcohol field professional living in Africa and willing to work within a Christian value-based organisation

Alcohol and Drug Policy Advocacy Officer:
Part Time 8hrs/week (20%) from March 2020 or as mutually agreed.

As Advocacy Officer you are based in your home office working closely on-line with the IBC secretariat and you will:

Job Description & Requirements

  • Develop the IBC advocacy programme and key messages in French and English based on evidence based research that is based on independent data without vested interests of drug and alcohol industry;
  • Establish and maintain structures and instruments for planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of progress against IBC advocacy plans within PCM framework;
  • Develop and submit timely and high-quality advocacy messages to support IBC’s global advocacy work together with IBC board and leadership;
  • Coach local programme coordinators and teams (mainly online coaching) on the topics of alcohol and drugs and policy advocacy. Organise substance abuse policy advocacy trainings to develop capacities of implementing partners;
  • Develop and foster collaboration and policy work with responsible authorities, governments and NGOs at country level and in international forums;
  • Represent IBC and actively participate in inter-agency forums and thematic working groups with partner NGOs and institutional donors as agreed by General Secretary;
  • Support the Fundraising and Communication team by providing advocacy insights, prospect donor contacts and concepts for funding applications;
  • Carry out any other tasks as required for the smooth running of IBC.
  • University degree in public health or in a relevant field
  • High knowledge of drug and alcohol harm
  • Commitment to following evidence based alcohol and drug policy without industry interference
  • No vested interests or connections to alcohol and drug industry
  • Working experience in development and cooperation, preferably with field experience with grassroots organisations in Africa
  • Excellent skills in coaching project partners
  • Fluent in French and English
  • Possibility for an excellent internet connection
  • Outstanding communication, social and networking skills
  • Commitment to work within Christian value-based organisation
  • Driven to support capacity building of partners in order to assist vulnerable people and to work with the issue of alcohol and other drugs
  • Team spirit, commitment, and flexibility. Independent, proactive and solution-oriented
  • Capable of working in a multi-cultural environment. Honest and trustworthy
  • Must be located in Africa

What we offer:
• Interesting and varied activities in an international environment with many opportunities to be proactive
• A motivated and committed international team
• Flexibility in work arrangements
• Salary and home office allowance according to your national pay structures and within IBC policies
• Christian value based work environment

Recruitment process
If you are interested in raising the IBC advocacy work to a new level, we are looking forward to receiving your complete electronic application with CV and motivation letter in English and with academic & work certificates in English or French by 6th of January 2020 at office@internationalbluecross.org, with subject “Advocacy Officer”.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to take a written on-line assessment during the week 20-23.1.2020. From these finally shortlisted candidates will be invited to an interview online on 5th February 2020.

For further information please contact General Secretary Anne Babb: a.babb@internationalbluecross.org

IBC Network Committee Meeting in Paris

05.11.2019

Paris - The IBC Network Committee (board) meeting, together with IBC Secretariat staff, took place from 28.-30 October for the third time in the French capital. The agenda included strategy development, the planning for the General Assembly in 2020 in South Africa and updates from Lisbon Addicitions Conference etc. IBC wants to take a stronger presence on drug prevention and speak against drug legalisation movements. Especially cannabis is a concern as more availability is leading to higher per capita consumption and increase of consumers that creates more harm and addiction. We need strong civil society voice world wide to tackle against the commercial powers on legalisation of drugs.

Rolf Hartmann from Brazil presented a thank you for IBC President Albert Moukolo and GS Anne Babb for the support to BC Brazil. Thank you Rolf Hartmann also for representing IBC at Lisbon Addictions conference!

IBC Network Committee Meeting in Paris

Joining forces to direct Blue Cross Global Strategy

05.11.2019

Again in Paris! The IBC Network Committee (board) and IBC Secretariat staff meeting took place from 8-10. May in the French capital. Main points of the agenda were the planning for the General Assembly in 2020 and the strategical outlook for the period 2020 - 2024. It continues to be important to involve all Blue Crosses around the world more closely in gloal steering processes. Participants brainstormed how to achieve this and -additionally to the actions of the IBC General Secretariat- the board members agreed to take this message to the Blue Crosses in their countries. In a world where the global alcohol consume rate is rising, global action and strategies are needed.

Life Skills for Youth in Chad

Project visit to our implementing partner in Africa - Blue Cross Chad

05.02.2019

IBC General Secretary Anne and IBC Finance Officer Katrin are back from their visit to our member organisation and implementing partner in Chad. It was a week full of activities, revising and working to improve the Life Skills Programme for youth further.
The IBC alcohol and drug prevention programme has been successfully running in the Chadian capital of N´Djamena since 2013. Meanwhile 20 schools participate in protecting young people from alcohol harm and sensitizing them for gender equality. Find out more about the programme in our programmes section!

IBC alcohol and drug prevention in Congo-Brazzaville on TV

Snapshot of IBC´s prevention work with underprivileged communities in Congo-Brazzaville

03.18.2019

Swiss Broadcaster SRF1 has accompanied the Blue Cross alcohol and drug prevention programme IBC implements with its local partner in Congo-Brazzaville. One of the participants is talking about his experiences in the video (German version)

Field visit in Congo-Brazzaville

In December, Flavia Ganarin, the new IBC programme officer, was ready for her first visit to the youth prevention project in Congo-Brazzaville.

12.20.2018

In December, Flavia Ganarin, the new IBC programme officer, was ready for her first visit to the youth prevention project in Congo-Brazzaville.

The project “Generation 5S” stands for “sans alcool, sans drogue, sans VIH/SIDA, sans violence, sans discrimination” (without alcohol, drugs, VIH/SIDA, violence, discrimination). The participating youth of Brazzaville learn here to cope with difficulties in their life in a healthy way – without alcohol and drugs. The programme gives them a space to develop their talents and skills. Through regular Life Skills trainings at schools, the young participants are supported to grow into responsible adults with self-esteem and positive outlook.

For Flavia´s visit, the local team of IBC partner organisation CTPAD had prepared a diverse programme. After a warm welcome they accompanied her through a series of visits and meetings with local stakeholders such as the Evangelical Church of Congo, the Institute responsible for the elaboration of school curricula, the Institute of deaf children, several neighborhood committees and multiple schools where IBC programme activities are being implemented.

She conducted focus group discussions with participating youth to get first-hand feedback, attended life skills trainings and met with parent´s initiatives which support the programme.

Besides this, Flavia has organised a variety of capacity-building trainings on project cycle management, monitoring and evaluation and prevention of sexual abuse and harassment with the local project staff. “It was gratifying to see how the local people are eager to learn and develop the programme further. It has been running here since 2013 and thousands of students have so far benefitted from the programme. What is very important and makes me proud is that the local politicians and stakeholders are engaged and support the initiative unanimously”.

During her stay Flavia met many young people who, thanks to the programme, made a conscious decision to live without alcohol and drugs - that gives hope! Due to the success, IBC will expand its activities in Congo in 2019 and intensify cooperation with churches, police, associations and community leaders.

IBC Network Committee Meeting

In November 2017 IBC Secretariat staff and board (Network Committee) came together at the Blue Cross Germany in Wuppertal.

11.16.2017

The IBC Network Committee Meeting took place at the Blue Cross Germany in Wuppertal. The seven Network Comitee (NC) members and the General Secretariat have their traditional three-days-get-together to update each other and synchronize the work between the Secretariat and the Network Committee.

One of the main topics of mutual input was the fundraising and development of projects. The NC members, coming from six different countries across the globe, work together with the Secretariat in different working groups. Besides the fundraising the focus was much on developing the organisational strategy 2018. Besides engaging in discussions, evaluating and assessing the work done in 2017 and planning for 2018 there is of course time for leisure. The evening dinners give participants a chance for casual exchange and getting to know each other better on the personal level - for the benefit of a fruitful cooperation!

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

We live in the age of big data. NGOs are no exception.

08.10.2018

We live in the age of big data. NGOs are no exception.

European Union's new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect on May 25, 2018. The new regulation affects every organisation across the globe that wants to do business with an individual or business in the EU. Switzerland applies the regulation too and as IBC we follow the Swiss guidelines. Please find here the offical document of the Swiss Confederation to this topic in German and French.

We will therefore continue to hold your contact details and periodically mail/ email you about news and issues that relate to our aims. We hope you will find our communication useful and of interest; however, if at any point you no longer wish to receive this information just let us know – we will make sure that opt-out options are included with any mailings we send out. We will hold your data securely and will not share it with third parties.

If you wish to unsubscribe from our Newsletter or you don't want to receive our mailings any more, you may do so by sending an email to: s.poenisch@internationalbluecross.info