Our Work

Locally Led Solutions

Strengthening the capacity of our program participants—entrepreneurs, farmers, micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises, skills training institutions, financial institutions, and private sector associations—to help them achieve their goals is central to our mission. The program participants that we serve set their own goals and have their own agendas and solutions. We provide human, technological, and financial resources—and our know-how from decades of experience delivering results across 139 countries—to help them achieve their goals. Critically, our program participants take leadership and ownership of our joint efforts, which is essential for fostering sustainable results.

Program Examples

Sri Lanka

Market-Oriented Dairy (MOD)

Funder: USDA Food for Progress

Program Overview: MOD supports farmers and other dairy enterprises to meet the demands of the local dairy sector in a commercially sustainable way. The program implements activities to increase the production levels and sales value of milk produced by participating farmers; improves the availability of and access to quality inputs for dairy farming; and improves dairy product safety through adherence to proper feeding regimens, management practices, and technology.

Relation to IESC Expertise: IESC works closely with public, private, and civil society sectors in Sri Lanka to support local solutions that will sustain beyond the life of project. We are strengthening the All Island Dairy Association (AIDA) to champion dairy industry interests through national policy dialogue with the Government of Sri Lanka. IESC also partners with the Department of Animal Production and Health and commercial dairy processors to strengthen farm-level extension services, resulting in over 17,000 hectares under improved practices. To date, IESC leveraged nearly $26 million in public and private sector investment to advance locally-led improvements in productivity and competitiveness.

Sri Lanka

Promoting Autonomy for Literacy and Attentiveness through Market Alliances (PALAM/A)

Funder: USAID

Program Overview: PALAM/A bridged constraints to sustainability and full government ownership of the national school meal program in Sri Lanka. In doing so, the program supported sustainable literacy and improved nutrition outcomes for school children throughout the country. IESC was a sub-awardee to Save the Children.

Relation to IESC Expertise: In collaboration with and responding to the needs of the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health, IESC carried out a Cost of the Diet Assessment for the school feeding program in Sri Lanka. We surveyed food traders, local school meal providers, students, teachers, and mothers’ groups to analyze preferences, availability, prices, and nutritional content of food ingredients. The study found that current school menus failed to meet nutritional requirements for school age children as recommended by the Department of Nutrition of the Medical Research Institute (MRI) of Sri Lanka, and identified new menus to cost effectively meet these requirements.

Sri Lanka

Skilled and Resilient Migrant Workers (SRMW)

Funder: Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and USAID

Program Overview: SRMW is ensuring that Sri Lanka’s migrant workers—both those intending to migrate for employment and those returning from employment—have the guidance and skills necessary to build safe, productive careers both abroad and at home. The project is also reducing the social and economic costs of migration for work. SRMW, which focuses on women, leverages the support mechanisms built by the IESC-implemented and USAID-funded YouLead program.

Relation to IESC Expertise: IESC works with five district-level non-governmental partner organizations to implement SRMW activities that support the safe and productive labor of migrant workers. Following district focus group discussions to identify the workforce needs of migrant workers, the project developed curriculum on career guidance and entrepreneurship development and trained district partners in implementation. This collaboration built the capacity of these local organizations to lead skills-building training and strengthened the networks of organizations working with migrant workers. Ongoing mentoring and follow-ups from the project will allow the project to continue monitoring the progression of these partner organizations and customize support as needed.

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