The Agricultural Development Organization - ADO - was established in 1993 in Burao with a focus at the time on relief and rehabilitation in order to assist the returnee population who had their homes and livelihoods destroyed during the civil war in the 1980s. Since its establishment, ADO has expanded its activities and has ventured into early recovery and development. ADO has its Head Office in Hargeisa with two regional offices in Burao and Borama and Erigavo of Togdhee, Awdal and Sanaag regions. ADO is an active member of the main local umbrella groups, namely, NAGAAD and COSONGO. It also strongly collaborates with the Environment Network, Human Rights Network, and Food Security Network. Currently, the organization is in close partnership with UNHCR, UNDP, WFP, ISF, OCHA/CHF, CESVI, NOVIB and Development Fund (DF) in implementing project.
A rights-based, pro-poor and people-centered methodology is the core philosophy inherent in ADO’s development approach. Developing effective programming to such an approach is a challenge. It requires extensive knowledge of the wide ranging issues and needs that impact human lives and livelihoods.
ADO’s approach is an innovative community-based participatory learning approach aimed at empowering marginalized groups to be engaged in areas that affect their lives. Throughout all the stages of the project cycle, our approach is a bottom-up process; it is a community-driven and people-centered approach. Our belief is that good governance, human rights and democratic principles need both vertical and horizontal support. This paradigm requires developing effective linkages and strengthening meaningful relationships at different levels (national, sub-national and local levels). The main sectors that ADO is involved in include:
- Agriculture to sustain livelihoods and improve food security.
- Environment to build the capacity of rural communities on environmental stewardship.
- Water sector to improve water sources infrastructure and proper sanitation and hygiene for both human and livestock consumption.
- Health sector to conduct awareness raising activities on HIV/AIDS and FGM.
- Micro-finance Sector to facilitate access to revolving loans to poor women-headed households.
Vision: to lead people of Somaliland towards sustainable development, peace and equitable social justice.
Mission: to create better opportunities for both the urban and rural poor through sustainable and participatory development approaches in order to sustain livelihoods. ADO’s approach is a sustainable development that takes into account social, economic and cultural rights.
Values and Principles: ADO aspires to a professional service in program design and implementation with all the stakeholders including partners, beneficiaries, government and other development actors. ADO values development-oriented programs to ensure sustainability of institutions and interventions for poverty eradication especially those targeting vulnerable and marginalized groups in Somaliland.
ADO’s Effective Instruments in Using Agriculture for Development
The current strategic direction of ADO is to strive for a society whereby livelihood security is improved and sustainable in the long term. The principal changes that ADO seeks to achieve in the current five years strategic plan are:
- Increase access to assets: land, water and human capital;
- Make small holder farming more productive and sustainable;
- Improve access to financial services;
- Enhance the performance of producer organizations;
- Promote innovation to science and technology.