The sustainability of project interventions is of great importance to Swisscontact. The coordination of project activities is in line with national development plans. We are thus guided by the needs and local circumstances of our project countries. On the other hand, the systemic approach to project implementation contributes decisively to the sustainability of our activities. A systemic way of working means that we first analyse the context in detail and define the gaps and difficulties that prevail. It could be, for example, that smallholders have no access to national or international markets because they do not know or do not meet the necessary quality standards. It could also mean that the curricula in vocational schools are not oriented towards private sector demand, and so young people do not find jobs after their training. After the identification of the underlying problem, we try to close the gaps, for example by building the capacity of actors such as cooperatives, training centres, government institutions, producers, buyers, etc. The project partners are strengthened with knowledge and the necessary skills. This enables them to serve the needs of disadvantaged women and men in the long-term. Consequently, the latter are given the opportunity to improve their living conditions independently and sustainably. We are particularly concerned with reaching people who are excluded or marginalised from the system, such as the youth, minorities, indigenous peoples, internally displaced persons, or migrants. We do this by providing them with access to education, the labour market or the market system. Our main goal is to withdraw at the appropriate time and leave behind a strengthened system that functions within itself.
To guarantee and continuously monitor our impact, a solid Monitoring and Results Measurement system is key. The Development Programme has significantly contributed to the development of an internal measuring system within Swisscontact. Based on sound quantitative data and qualitative information, our system can reveal why and how specific changes have taken place, and how sustainable these might be. This makes it possible for our project teams to make informed decisions and implement corrective measures in a timely manner. The overall system, therefore, not only provides information on the viability, efficiency, efficacy and impact of our projects and the organisation as a whole, it also ensures adaptive and results-oriented project management. Our impact measurement system complies with the internationally recognised standards of the Donor Committee for Enterprise Development (DCED). We are proud that the Swiss Federal Audit Office (SFAO) that audited Swisscontact in 2019 noted the reliability of the source data both at the level of Swisscontact project managers, and local partners. It confirms the good traceability of the data used for reports throughout the information chain.