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Learning Briefs | April 13, 2023

The Benefits of Social Cohesion Integration for Multisectoral Programming

Learning from the Budikadidi Project in the DRC

In 2022, the DRC Budikadidi team launched a social cohesion learning study to document the project’s unique approach to social cohesion and governance integration, explore its influence on project outcomes, and offer recommendations for achieving greater development-peacebuilding coherence in future programs.

Between 2017 and 2023, a CRS-led consortium implemented the USAID-funded Budikadidi Resilience Food Security Activity (RFSA) in the DRC’s Kasaï Oriental Province to sustainably improve household nutrition, food security, and economic well-being. With the foundational purpose of empowering communities to improve and sustain food security and nutrition for all community members, strengthening governance was an integral component of the original Budikadidi design. Following conflict in 2017, the need for strong governance within local structures was underscored as community members lacked trust amongst each other (horizontal social cohesion) and in their leaders (vertical social cohesion). In response, CRS invested private resources to integrate a social cohesion intervention targeting both staff and community leaders.