What We Know About Exit Strategies: Practical Guidance For Developing Exit Strategies in the Field
The goal of this guidance document is to improve our collective understanding and ability to develop and implement sound Exit Strategies from Developmental Relief Programs.
The topic of ‘Exit Strategies’ confounds and eludes emergency and development practitioners alike. In the dynamic context of southern Africa, the mere mention of ‘an exit’ when discussing food programming can cause panic among communities, NGO staff, government and other stakeholders.
The objectives are two-fold:
1. strengthen C-SAFE’s existing Exit Strategies during the final year of the C-SAFE grant; and,
2. better prepare NGO staff to develop strong Exit Strategies for future programs, including those that follow on from C-SAFE.
The groundwork for this document was laid during learning events in Zambia and Zimbabwe (April 2005) that aimed to build an understanding, share ideas, and begin to strengthen C-SAFE’s Exit Strategies. At that time, southern Zambia was showing early signs of another drought, and indicators suggested the need for increased assistance to affected districts. In Zimbabwe, C-SAFE members were likewise preparing for a possible scale-up of activities following parliamentary elections (which had stifled activities for several months), and as well in response to projections of increasing food insecurity related to recurring drought conditions. Similarly, member agencies in Lesotho faced a scenario of on going food insecurity in the majority of participating communities.