MEAL & SUS Grants: Using Creative Documentaries and Podcasts to promote SUN CSO MEAL, Communications and Fundraising in Zimbabwe

Fundraising and Sustainability, Monitoring and Evaluation, East and Southern Africa

Every year, as part of the CSN small grant competition, we offer CSAs the chance to win a grant in order to foster and stimulate innovation and learning within the network. These MEAL & SUS grants are designed to focus on monitoring, evaluation and learning in order to create sustainable and long lasting work. This year’s recipients are Feed the Children in collaboration with SUN Civil Society Alliance Kenya and Youth lead 4 Nutrition Kenya,Disaster and Environmental Management Trust and Civil Society Organizations Scaling Up Nutrition Alliance (ZCSOSUNA), Nutres in El Salvador, Civil Society Scaling Up Nutrition in Nigeria (CS-SUNN) and Alliance SUN Côte d’Ivoire.

  • Country: Zimbabwe
  • Led by: Disaster and Environmental Management Trust and Civil Society Organizations Scaling Up Nutrition Alliance (ZCSOSUNA)
  • For more info contact:
  • Project focus and innovations: Develop a creative and sustainable mechanism for reporting achievements to promote learning across members and support fundraising.

Project Goals

Disaster and Environmental Management Trust (DEMT) in partnership with BIOGENESIS Organic Sweet Potatoes (BIOSP) will make a creative documentary to show the nutrition-sensitive and nutrition-specific projects being implemented by SUN CSOs at sub-national level in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe. The main aims of the initiative are to promote visibility of the ZCSOSUNA CSOs while strengthening their capacities to communicate their work, challenges and needs to the SUN CSA in Zimbabwe and to leverage on their community projects impact stories to attract more funding resources from local donors and the SUN CSN donor network. The initiative will also aid community based CSOs in impact reporting, fundraising and sustainability in order to promote effective monitoring, evaluation, learning and reporting of outcomes and impact to the SUN CSA in Zimbabwe. The project will involve the participation of the Youth Leader for Nutrition in Zimbabwe in the creative documentary making.

By the end of October 2020, SUN CSOs at sub national level in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe would have actively and effectively communicated their key nutrition-specific and nutrition sensitive projects, results, challenges and needs through a creative documentary which will be shared with the Zimbabwe Civil Society Organizations Scaling Up Nutrition Alliance (ZCSOSUNA), the SUN CSA, donors and policy makers in Zimbabwe.

The project will focus on monitoring and documenting the ongoing nutrition specific and nutrition sensitive projects and programmes being implemented by CSO members of the ZCSOSUNA in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe. The Alliance has been making efforts to monitor the activities of its members and to know what they are doing to scale up nutrition in their communities at subnational level. This initiative will therefore build on that to ensure that the activities of the CSOs are known to the Alliance and their challenges and needs are noted, captured, documented and shared.

Project Outline

It is anticipated that by the end of October 2020, the initiative would have made a creative SUN CSO documentary for the ZCSOSUNA members operating at sub-national level in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe with a narrative of their nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive projects.

ZCSOSUNA CSO members in Mashonaland East Province will have also created and communicated their challenges and needs to the SUN CSA, the donor network, and the policy makers through the creative documentary.

By the end of the same period, 20 ZCSOSUNA CSO members operating at sub-national level in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe would have increased knowledge and skills on impact reporting, creative documentary making and fundraising for sustainability

By the end of October 2020, the project would have organised 3 documentary screening platforms for the SUN CSA in Zimbabwe, media, policy makers, and local donors. The documentary will also be screened live on social media channels such as Youtube, Facebook and Twitter.

How will they achieve this?

Step 1: MEAL

The strategy is to visit 15 CSOs at subnational level in Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe and document their nutrition specific and nutrition sensitive projects. Prior to the field visits, DEMT and BOSP will identify the local donors and private sector within and outside the ZCSOSUNA network to consult on the type of information they may be interested to know from the CSOs. These will include the European Union, Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), Oxfam, World Food Program, the United Nations Development Fund (UNDP) as well as UNICEF. After this survey, questions will be shared with the targeted 15 CSOs so that they prepare in advance before our field visits.

Step 2: Communication

The strategy is to build the capacities of 15 CSOs on communication, impact reporting, creative documentary making, fundraising and sustainability. This will ensure that impact or success stories for local grassroots CSOs are captured and disseminated through the social media, policy makers, donor network and the mainstream media as part of promoting effective advocacy, resource mobilisation and sustainability. We will also create a WhatsApp group platform for effective communication between the project team and the 15 CSOs.

ZCSOSUNA also plans to organise platforms for documentary screenings to showcase the work of the local CSOs at grassroots and subnational level, and also highlighting their challenges and needs to lure technical and financial support from key stakeholders. We will also share the documentary with all stakeholders to promote visibility of grassroots CSOs across the SUN CSN and the donor network at regional and global level.

Step 3. Sustainability and fundraising

Outcome 3. By the end of October 2020, the project would have organised platforms for documentary screening with the policy makers, private sector and donors in Zimbabwe.

Disseminating results and innovation Activity-based evaluations will be conducted to capture, and document lessons learnt, as well as to improve on next activities. There will also be an end of project team evaluation to discuss what went well and what did not, and to determine how best to improve on future activities.

The creative documentary will be shared with various stakeholders namely the ZCSOSUNA secretariat and its CSOs, the donor network, the academia, the media, the private sector and the MEAL Working Group. The results will also be shared through various social media channels namely twitter, websites, facebook and Instagram. More so, platforms for documentary screenings with numerous relevant stakeholders will be organised as part of advocacy and resource mobilisation for CSOs.

Looking to the future

This initiative will inform the future activities of DEMT and BIOSP as well as the ZCSOSUNA which will be monitoring, evaluating and learning from the work of its CSOs nationwide. DEMT and BIOSP will also organise various documentary screenings for CSOs, private sector, donors and policy makers to initiate dialogues on food and nutrition issues and to attract technical and funding support for the CSOs. The DEMT and BIOSP organisations also plan to continue collecting impact stories from the ZCSOSUNA members in all the 10 provinces and at district levels across Zimbabwe. If resources permit, the project will be cascaded down to ward level as part of project growth, expansion and sustainability strategy. The information will be shared through documentaries and newsletters to the global SUN CSN.

The project will address the problem of poor communication, invisibility, ineffective monitoring and reporting of progress made by the alliance CSO members at grassroots and subnational level in Zimbabwe. These underlying problems affects the capacities of local CSOs to attract technical and financial support to effectively implement their nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive projects and programmes at community level in Zimbabwe. This initiative will therefore improve sustainability of CSOs and their work at subnational level in Zimbabwe.