SALAM First Quarter Progress Report 2018


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SALAM First Quarter Progress Report 2018

February 6, 2018

The Support Afghanistan Livelihoods and Mobility (SALAM) project is a joint programme of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), International Labour Organization (ILO) and United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), implemented primarily by the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs, Martyrs and Disabled (MoLSAMD) in Nangarhar province.

With initial funding support from the Government of Finland, SALAM aims to meet the sustainable livelihoods needs of returnees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), including those of vulnerable groups, women, youth, people with disabilities, in the wake of the massive and ongoing return of Afghan people from Pakistan. It also advocates for increased opportunities for both returnee and host communities as an important conflict prevention consideration.

The first quarter of 2018, considerable progress on enabling activities was experienced, such as completion of international staff recruitments and making project offices in Kabul and Jalalabad operationally ready (for example communications and security infrastructure) which at time of writing have already resulted in the initiation of project deliverables. During the reporting period, no results as indicated in the annual workplan and the quarterly targets were achieved. However, the project continued to lay a foundation for the achievement of tangible results in following quarters.

UNDP, ILO and MoLSAMD revised the project document to reflect changes in SALAM geographic and programmatic scope.1 This revision, along with that of the SALAM 2018 Annual Work Plan, was approved by UNDP, ILO, UNHCR and MoLSAMD and endorsed by Finland. All-party agreement with the revised 2018-2019 SALAM Annual Workplan, HR and procurement plans was confirmed at the second Technical Working Group (TWG) meeting In January 24, 2018.

Important recruitments were completed in this Quarter. The Chief Technical Adviser joined the project in January. The ILO National Project Coordinator took up assignment in March. As a setback, however, the SALAM Project Manager resigned in February. Recruitment of the replacement was initiated immediately, and is ongoing at the time of writing. Important technical activities, including the drafting of tendering documents and the design of inputs in the field of Public-Private Partnerships and TVET Board have begun.

To monitor project implementation and assist the development of the SALAM team located in Jalalabad, and in service of undertaking made to the donor, Kabul-based project staff has p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 11.5px Helvetica}

conducted monthly visits to Jalalabad. This provided opportunity for the strengthening of cooperation with the Provincial Governor and Director of DoLSAMD, improved coordination with UNHCR, IOM and the Nangarhar Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), and importantly provided opportunity for project technical staff to improve familiarity with private-sector opportunities and constraints for employment generation.

At the completion of the reporting period, the prospects for successful project implementation are considerably improved in comparison to the situation reported at the end of 2017. The confident expectation is that the second quarterly progress report will be able to report on delivery against specific annual workplan targets.