MINURCAT participates in public outreach through activities designed to benefit the local population, refugees, and internally displaced persons (IDPs) directly. Many of these activities are accomplished through QIPs, or Quick-Impact Projects. Some MINURCAT QIPs that are currently in progress are:
Rehabilitation of the prison in Abeche. Headed by the Corrections Advisory Unit, this project will create a more humane environment for inmates detained in the Abeche men’s prison. Work includes the rehabilitation of two men’s cellblocks, the juvenile unit, the kitchen, the infirmary and the septic system. The project will benefit 150 detainees.
Improvement of living conditions for females in the Abeche prison. This Quick-Impact Project will reconstruct the living spaces in the female cellblocks, reinforce the wall that separates the female section of the prison from the male section, and provide psychological counselling and support to female prisoners. The Gender Unit is heading this project, with support from the Corrections Advisory Unit.
Establishment of a cereal mill in Goz Amir. Building a working cereal mill in Dar Sila will create a way for the most vulnerable members of the population to process their grain without leaving half of their product as payment for use of the machine, as they currently are forced to do with the limited resources at hand. This new mill will allow the people to keep grain for their own consumption and to sell the surplus, using the mill as a source of revenue and a base for a community organization. The project will benefit 700 seniors (age 50-93) as well as the community’s women.
Access for refugees, IDPs and host population to dedicated radio programming. Directly benefiting over 90,000 women and girls in twelve refugee camps, approximately 40,000 displaced women and girls in IDP sites, and members of the local host population in the Dar Sila region, this project will allow the beneficiaries to listen to radio programming that is specifically designed for them. The programming will include many different issues that relate to the women and children in the camps and sites of eastern Chad. MINURCAT has partnered with the international NGO Internews for this Quick-Impact Project.
Training and equipment provided to women in Birao to promote their active participation in ensuring their own security in surrounding refugee camps and IDP sites. Headed by the Gender Unit, this Quick-Impact Project will supply uniforms, shoes and training materials to women in Birao who will act as members of the security teams patrolling the nearby refugee camps and IDP sites. This will specifically benefit the women and children in these camps and sites, as they often prefer to report gender-based violence to a female officer.
Promoting gender equality in accordance with Resolution 1325. The Gender Unit will promote Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women and Peace and Security through training workshops and sensitization campaigns in N’djamena, Abeche, Goz Beida, Iriba, and Farchana. The workshops, which will include members of the government, will focus on gender equality, while the campaigns will pay particular attention to communicating the realities of gender-based violence in armed conflict zones.
Training of peer educators to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS among prostitutes in Ouaddai. This project was conceived by MINURCAT’s HIV/AIDS Unit to combat the spread of the virus among prostitutes, locally referred to as “free women,” in the Ouaddai region of eastern Chad.
Sensitization campaign on HIV/AIDS for students at the University in Abeche. This project was designed to promote behavioural change in regard to sexual activity among the students attending the University in Abeche. Current behaviour discourages dialogue on these issues, as well as the use of condoms. The HIV/AIDS Unit is working to sensitize students to accept using condoms, while distributing and promoting the proper use of condoms. Trainers will also encourage students to use the provided HIV/AIDS testing facility to check their status.
Installation of road signs in Abeche. MINURCAT and local organizations have placed traffic signs at key points and intersections in the city of Abeche, with a goal of reducing car and motorcycle accidents. In addition, this Quick-Impact Project includes a large sensitization campaign for the local population to enable them to recognize and follow the instructions given by the signs. MINURCAT partnered with the local NGO Association Altanmya Ouaddai and the local government in Abeche to complete the project.