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Joined ACROSS in 2012 as a board member and became the Executive Director in 2015. Elisama holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Edinburgh and is conducting his PhD research in anti-corruption and governance. Elisama also serves as a volunteer board member of the campus ministry, FOCUS.
Every morning, the staff of ACROSS gather in their respective locations to begin the day with a time of devotion. This simple start to the work day is one distinctive of the ACROSS family, where people are nurtured and mentored in their spiritual and their professional develoopment.
Left: teacher training; Centre: A peace mission in a cattle camp; Right: Vegetable production supported by ACROSS
Health & Education
ACROSS’ Health and Education programmes in Rumbek East work closely with the Ministries of Education and Health. In 2016 ACROSS trained 8 health managers in order to strengthen the supervision of health facilities.
ACROSS trains teachers and supervisors in the education sector. Head teachers from Rumbek East reported in 2016 that they were now receiving regular supervisory visits from Payam and County school inspectors, and attributed this to ACROSS’ programme. ACROSS also helps children to stay in education, particularly girls, incentivising boys to support girls’ learning and education. Thanks in part to ACROSS, 574 girls and 230 boys continued in education in 2016, while 105 girls and 63 boys completed their education.
The Health & Education programmes contain a significant peacebuilding element, which also involves the local church. ECS bishops of Akot and Rumbek dioceses, Bishops Isaac and Alapayo, alongside clan leaders, government officials and NGOs, have worked hard to mediate between youth of rival clans. ACROSS has played its part in bringing people together and through the use of Digital Audio Players, particularly in cattle camps. Revenge killing and clan fighting were significantly reduced in 2016. Rival clans were able to stay together in one cattle camp and visit each other’s villages without restriction or fear.
Farming God’s Way
Supported by Tear Fund Switzerland, ACROSS ran refresher training to improve food security in Rumbek East, attended by 20 participants, following basic training in 2015.
Funded by the International Development Association and by Denmark, the Local Government and Service Delivery Project provides block grants for payam development, involves communities throughout the process, strengthens institutions, and provides project management support. ACROSS facilitates community engagement for the project, helping bomas and payams to identify their needs, develop priority lists and select projects. Thanks to ACROSS, women made up 46% of participants in community meetings, influencing the kind of interventions prioritised. Women, who fetch water from distant places, have particularly identified water as a pressing need. ACROSS has helped to set up Payam Development Committees and Project Supervisory Teams to supervise interventions once selected, following up with County Authorities and contractors when work is not proceeding as it should. Water User Committees have over 50% female representation.