International cooperation is a process that requires many rethinking and adaptations in order to face a world which keeps on changing. Acknowledging this many actors in the cooperation to development field decided to create the Charter of Trento for a “better cooperation”. From 2008 to 2015 the Charter dealt with the UN Millennium Development Goals, by advancing for each some thoughts concerning international cooperation. Through this article, that we are going to split in two parts due to length reasons, we are proposing you an evaluation of the activity of Kito Onlus in the context of the Charter of Trento. In this first part, following the order of the Charter, we focus on the development goals from 8 to 6.
8.Partnership for development
Taking into consideration the Development Goal 8 the Charter of Trento remarks how important it is to read the present and depart from there when it is time to act. And the present requires to focus on relationships: cooperation is –or at least, it should be – a process able to involve the community of beneficiaries and local resources, while investing in the social and human capital of all the actors involved. Only in this way transformation can be sustainable, effective and long-term able to last even after the post-emergency or post-war period. The involvement of local people and resources is a constant in Kito’s work. A clear example of it can be found in Cash for Work, a tipology of projects that entails the involvement of local population in works of public utility through which in 2013 were rebuilt some classrooms of the school of tanza, previously destroyed by a typhoon. Such a way of acting is what it going beyond the action (the project) to focus on the process (the relationship). Local population was also involved in the construction of the Health Center in San Francisco (2015-2016) and members of the community are currently committed to the project of reconstruction of the Banilad Elementary School.
7.Ensure environmental sustainability
Being aware of the importance of the environmental heritage, not only simply and obviously because in order to guarantee the survival of human beings on earth but also to preserve an equilibrium within territorial entities, and being also aware of the impact of human activities on nature the Charter of Trento underlines the importance more than ever of imagining a future in which nature is respected: in the field of cooperation environmental protection must become a theme trasversal to every activity. Since it mainly operates in a Country, the Philippines, frequently subjected to natural disasters, Kito Onlus knows well the importance of preserve the equilibrium human beings/nature. A proof? The Kito-Hut was designed to be energetically self sufficient thanks to solar-electric panels installed on the roof. The San Francisco Health Center as well has a photovoltaic system with an energy store and is an example of green building since local materials were used for the construction and it was payed attention to not compromise the characteristic of the local habitat – a model of efficiency and environmental sustainability!
6.Combat Hiv/aids and tuberculosis
Even though the development goal number 6 explicitly cites determined diseases, the Charter of Trento precises how on the other hand it is necessary that “international cooperation focuses on health as quality of life, accessibility and right”. It is about thinking about health not just as absence of diseases but as wellbeing of the person. This should happen by strengthening local sanitary system, focusing on the needs of the community and by the resources locally available, so that every territorial entity has the tools to overcome face its own necessities. Kito Onlus has been active in the health sector for a long time, focusing not only in overcoming emergencies but in providing the beneficiaries with the knowledge necessary to improve sanitary conditions in the long term. From the Kito Health Unit to health hygiene and prevention trainings (2014-2016), to the construction of an health center in San Francisco to the implementarion of the Open Hospital software together with the IT training provided to the medical personnel Kito Onlus has been working by putting the communities’ need at the centre, by providing health education and training, by strengthening local health systems and by facilitating the access to services – therefore in line with the priority actions identified by the Charter of Trento.
Second part of the article coming soon!