Plan International’s Holistic Approach to Adolescent Girls in Crisis Programming: How Does the Integration of Child Protection and Education Work in Practice?
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In recent years, humanitarian action has increasingly moved away from siloed emergency responses divided by thematic sector, and more towards a holistic approach that integrates sectors, such as Child Protection and Education in Emergencies. Integrated programming has been shown to have multiple benefits, most importantly on program participants such as adolescent girls, who have long been overlooked by the humanitarian sector and therefore are the focus group of Plan International’s programming. Through semi-structured in-depth interviews with key program staff from Plan International’s offices, this research aims to understand how integrated programming is implemented in programs taking place in West Africa. Mixed findings indicate a partial collaboration across both sectors, caused by challenges such as missing technical expertise and strategic framework, insufficient funding and resistance to change. Proposed solutions for these challenges are knowledge exchange and improved feedback mechanisms, making integration a performance indicator, more opportunities for professional development, more guidance, and ensuring staff a future in the organization. These results are discussed in relation to further research and the implications that they have on humanitarian programming.