Online Peer Assist Experiments


Online Peer Assist Experiments

We are experimenting with doing online Peer Assists for KM4Dev in this group. We will run a couple of experiments, then debrief our learnings. We decided to use the NING group and then report out on the full KM4Dev list. Everyone is welcome to join!

Members: 22
Latest Activity: May 21, 2015

Introduction to Our First Peer Assist

Our first peer assist will be with Yennenga. Our guest peer assist facilitators will be Alejandro, Bonnie, Catherine, Ednah, Johannes and Nancy. Our goal is to both offer Yennenga a peer assist, and to consider how to do peer assists online. For more about peer assists, check out this entry in the KS Toolkit: Peer Assists.


We think we will start addressing one question at a time, using the comment wall. So we'll post each question, then ask everyone to ask any clarifying questions on that first question. Then we will offer ideas and experiences on that question. Following, Yennega will post what she learned and will do next. Then we'll move on to the next question. At least that is the plan. Here is Yennenga's situation and questions:

To sum up the situation :


Imagine 6,000 illiterate women living in villages across west Africa (Burkina Faso, Mali, Senegal). Some grow crops, others transform agriculture product, others are craftmakers or small sellers. Although they work  really hard, they earn very little wage from those activities.

Three years ago, those women gathered into a network; the aim is to strengthen and share their experiences in three main areas : microfinance, environment, and women's empowerment. A team of local facilitators help them. But their facilitation capacities have to be strengthened.

Three months ago, I joined that rural women network, in order to help them better manage the knowledge production and sharing. I would like to start with five actions.


1. To capitalise, map and profile the job of "local facilitator" and then Produce a toolkit for the facilitators (what and how?) Facilitated by: Catherine  


2. Identify and train some of the women in KM (success stories recording and telling for example). Facilitated by: Alejandro


3. Identify and train local trainers in agriculture products conservation and transformation techniques. Facilitated by: Bonnie.


4. To set up a monitoring and evaluation tool that will help assess the evolution of the members of the network. Facilitated by:


Can KM4Dev change the lives of those 6, 000 women? How do I help do all that, in a sustainable and profitable way for the network? I have a voice recorder, a digital camera, a laptop and a skype account. How do I do that, to be able to develop their autonomy in KM4dev and make my presence unnecessary  after two years?



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Comment Wall


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Comment by Nancy White on April 12, 2013 at 10:45pm

This "on the ground context" is really useful, thanks. As i read this, it reminds me that we don't often get to learn a lot about each others work in KM4Dev. So beyond the technical knowledge that can be shared in a peer assist, I'm reminded how much the knowledge that fosters social connection is important to me -- for my learning, for my sense of connection to you and others. I suspect, in my heart, that this is also a core value for Aliniha. I didn't know how much I was to gain out of this and we haven't even fully started. 

Comment by J. Yennenga KOMPAORE on April 12, 2013 at 11:44am

About the women in the network ( response to Priyanka's question)

A network of women-leaders


In practice, the Aliniha women are taught to bring added value to the natural resources of

their environment, by transforming them into quality products which they can sell for revenue

allowing them to improve their daily lives.


For instance, Burkinabe groups of Aliniha women

have set up a shea transformation unit, using a local natural resource to make high quality

butter, creams and soaps, in high demand in their region.


In Senegal, some Aliniha women grow a tree called moringa which has a number of virtues, chief of which is its effectiveness in combating child malnutrition.


In Mali, many Aliniha women have turned to market gardening; garden produce such as groundnuts or capsicum peppers are subsequently sold in

the market or transformed into for instance groundnut paste, grilled or dried peanuts,

powdered capsicum, dried peppers or even capsicum pepper sauce, which are again sold in

the market.


To start these activities, women need a minimum amount of money for their working capital.

Aliniha's social credit system provides the means to address this. Women's groups

can request social credit from a micro-finance institution that is also part of Aliniha

International to carry out their entrepreneurial projects and receive training in micro-finance

and management of trade activities. The group is jointly liable for the financial support

received by each member.


Every woman belonging to the group receiving a micro-credit is also given 3 seedlings and is

taught how to plant and look after them.


With the revenue from their activities, Aliniha women can pay back their credits (including

interest) and generate benefits.


In addition, the women develop skills through the series of training courses tied to the trees and credits, covering many subjects, from literacy skills to management of a revenue-generating activity, through awareness of women's rights and the protection of the environment.


Today, the Aliniha women are grouped formally into several self-managed Aliniha associations or AAA for the French acronym – 5 in Mali, 3 in Senegal and 3 in Burkina Faso.

Comment by J. Yennenga KOMPAORE on April 12, 2013 at 11:21am

About The "network ALiniha"

ntroduction: Aliniha, a collaboration between two southern partners for the development of skills

Aliniha is a methodology developed in West Africa, designed and implemented by three African organizations of Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal, that targets sustainable development through women. Specifically, the Aliniha International member structures

support women's groups and help them organize into associations allowing them to become leaders in the field of sustainable development by incorporating goals concerning natural resources management, social development and economic growth.

Aliniha was born of the meeting in 2007 of three social entrepreneurs from three West

African countries: Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal. These three development leaders each

have a specific area of expertise: development and improvement of women's skills, microfinance

and management of natural resources. Together, they decided to pool their experience

and incorporate these skills into a joint program: “a woman, a credit, a tree”. Thus a feasibility study was undertaken in 2008 and Aliniha was created in 2009, in three regions:

Gaoua in Burkina Faso, Kayes in Mali and Tambacounda in Senegal.

For three years

starting, Aliniha's three founders – Burkinabe Ini Damien, Malian Alou Keita

and Franco-Senegalese Jean Goepp – tested the implementation of this project. In 2012, a decision was made to turn this

combination of skills and experiences that is Aliniha into a

proper international structure. Thus on 22 March 2012, Aliniha International wasestablished.

Institutionalizing the program makes it possible to formalize the practices and ensure they can spread more widely.

Comment by Priyanka on April 12, 2013 at 11:18am

hi yennenga, do these women have an form of financial assistance at the moment? what kind of crafts are they producing? 

Comment by ALEJANDRO BALANZO on April 12, 2013 at 11:08am

Thanks Yenenga! Really nice!

I think it would also help if we know about the network you are working with: its history, its turning points, its aims and challenges..

Comment by Nancy White on April 12, 2013 at 3:57am

Wow, I am, as they say here in the States, "blown away" by your work, Yennenga. Fantastic! This is great for helping us get a sense of you and your work. I'll wait a day or two to see if there are other general questions, then we can jump into the questions! Thank you for this opportunity to really get a look inside your practice. 

Comment by J. Yennenga KOMPAORE on April 12, 2013 at 1:18am

My work in West Africa :

ok. I'll try to go straight to the point.

I am from Burkina Faso, where I live. From 2001 to 2004 I worked for an NGO in rural areas in the eastern part of Burkina. My work consisted in making interwiews with farmer with a voice recorder. Then I translated that material to create written and audio content for farmers organization. In 2006, I founded "Performances", a small news and knowledge lab to help rural (agric) organizations to create their own contents for experience sharing. From 2006 to 2011, I've tryed many experiments in data collecting : interviews - focus groups - writing worshops. Content sharing and brodcasting is still a big problem. i've also made some experiments there : Questions & answers service - mobile library - rural radios - talking books. 

 The biggest challenge  is to find a business model to make my work sustainable. We are now 5 persons trying to earn our living by working for Performances. Unbelievable!! So It has to become more and more professionnal and experiments have to be completed by succesful processes !

Some months ago, for the first time, A rural women leaders' network (Aliniha) asked me to help design and monitor a KM strategy. The reason : capitalize the existing expertize within the network (about 6,000 women in Burkina Faso, mali and Senegal) and create content for the local facilitators.

 As said before, my aim is to make my presence, as KM&O  irrelevant after two/three years. So the network members would be autonomous in KM, maybe with an external coaching from time to time. And I can multiply the networks and organizations I work for, spreading waht I learn as I am circulating from one organization to the other.


I'm a true autodidact in the work I do. That is why, having insights and thoughts / advices / assistance from you has highest value.






Comment by Nancy White on April 11, 2013 at 8:41pm

Fabulous, Yennenga. Why don't you tell us a bit more about your work in West Africa. How did you get into this? What have been some key turning points?

Comment by J. Yennenga KOMPAORE on April 11, 2013 at 8:27pm

Hi ! I've made it to this Comment wall!! Cant' believe it....

Nancy, I'm happy to have general conversation with you about my context.

Comment by Nancy White on April 11, 2013 at 8:01pm

Jaap and Alejandro, welcome! We aren't quite formally ready to start, but you know KM4Dev -- informal rules. So welcome. I've asked Yennenga if she can have a bit of a general conversation with us to learn a bit more about her context before we start diving into the questions! And to let others "arrive!"


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