We work with companies, government agencies, and other organizations to engage meaningfully with communities. This objective is based on our key premises:
- Any project or business activity that enters into a locality must hear the voices of the local people.
- Government entities and/or private companies on the one hand, and communities on the other hand, can work together in ways that are mutually beneficial to each other.
- The local people – individually or through groups – would want to, as they should, take greater ownership and control over decisions affecting their day-to-day life, surroundings, livelihood, health, among others.
- Communities bring valuable contributions to developing and implementing effective practices which will enormously benefit project proponents or developers/implementors. At the same time communities learn novel ways from their engagement with organizations be they state agencies, NGOs, or business enterprises.
We aim to be as inclusive as possible in terms of bringing in different sectoral perspectives into our information gathering, appraisal, analysis, validation, report-writing, and formulation of strategic actions.
- We place a high premium on the participation of women, people with disabilities, youth, and the elderly in decision-making processes.
- We give utmost importance to enabling those who experience exclusion or marginalization of any form to find the ease, proclivity, and openness to express their opinions about matters that affect them, such that they would feel heard, understood, and accepted.
We do not only use available digital software packages, such as NViVo and SPSS, as needed in our analysis. To begin with, we do employ robust methodologies – participatory, iterative, and reflective – in gathering information about the ‘big picture’ to illuminate and dissect the community issue(s) under consideration in projects we work on.
- We use a combination of both qualitative and quantitative techniques such as surveys, one-one interviews, group interviews, focus group discussions, or workshops as may be relevant.
- We include in our data-gathering techniques relevant indigenous methods, as may be necessary, such as camp-fire story-telling, partaking in traditional games, and joining in traditional dances and singing, as may be appropriate.
- We recognize the importance of listening to and learning about indigenous tales (e.g., cultural and/or individual transformations), stories about rites of passage among males and females, explanations for natural phenomena, instructional stories about survival skills, and many more from that we can learn from the richness of Indigenous Knowledge.
At Social Stakes & Solutions, we strongly promote collaboration and bottom-up initiatives. We aim to foster fruitful interactions among key sectors in society – government, private business, civil society organizations, and communities – to achieve mutually beneficial goals.
We believe this approach stimulates if not revitalizes creativity and social innovation; it focuses on achieving win-win situations instead of causing one party, or both, to resort to antagonism or adversarial actions.