Agha Khan Rural Support Programme received Ashden Award in 2004 which recognized its achievement in providing micro-hydro power to remote communities in the North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan. AKRSP involved the villagers from the outset. Local committees were set up to manage installation and maintenance, including pricing. Local people did much of the initial work. By 2010, a total of 204 hydro systems had been installed in Chitral province and about 20 elsewhere, supplying electricity for lighting and household appliances.
Sarhad Rural Support Programme received Ashden Award in 2015 for building 189 micro-hydro schemes, bringing electricity to around 365,000 people and transforming communities in the process. “SRSP has shown the wonderful chain reaction that results from access to electricity. Its micro-hydro plants enable businesses to thrive, health clinics to operate fully and bring 21st century communications and education facilities to one of the most challenging parts of Asia”.
Chairman RSPN Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan was nominated in 2009 for “unleashing the power and potential of the poor”.
The award aims at recognizing and honoring environmental and humanitarian achievement in individuals and organizations. Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan, Chairman of RSPN was given the award in 1989. He was able to overcome environmental issues despite immense social, political and logistical obstacles.
In 1992, Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan, Chairman of RSPN was given this prestigious award by the President of Philippines; Roman Magsaysay who has been recognizing people and organization’s committed to community service for 40 years.
Duke of Edinburgh presented the medal to Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan, Chairman RSPN in 1994. The purpose of this medal is to recognize highly meritorious contributions to the conservation of wildlife and Natural Resources.
Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan, Chairman of RSPN was elected as Senior Ashoka Fellow in 2009. The Ashoka Fellow supports individuals with a platform offering communities of learning develop a vibrant ecosystem of support and provide expert analysis about women and social entrepreneurship.
This award was given to Mr. Shoaib Sultan Khan in 2006.
In recognition of RSPNs humanitarian services in the rescue and rehabilitation following the devastating October 2005 earthquake, RSPN received a certificate and shield of commendation from the Government of Pakistan at an event commemorating the first anniversary of the earthquake on October 8, 2006.
RSPN’s input into government’s poverty reduction strategy has been given official recognition by the Government of Pakistan. Evidence of this is seen in apublication given by Government of Pakistan titled Rural Poverty Reduction through Social Mobilisation (2005-2010). This publication is a supplement to Pakistan’s Medium Term Development Framework (2005-11).
RSPN has been instrumental in forming government poverty reduction policies by conducting community consultations in the first and second Pakistan Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) of the Pakistan government. RSPN undertook these consultations through its member Rural Support Programmes (RSPs) across the country in 49 districts and with 121 Community Organisations.
RSPN has worked with Pakistan’s National Reconstruction Bureau in the drafting of the Local Government Ordinance (LGO, 2001), which is the basis of the Government’s devolution plan. Specific input was based on the registration and operation of Citizen’s Community Boards (CCBs), a component of Pakistan’s devolution plan which seeks to ‘formalise’ organised community groups through their registration with local governments and their access to public funds for community-managed projects. Building on this work, RSPN signed anMoU with the Devolution Trust for Community Empowerment (DTCE), a non-profit company set up to build the capacity of CCBs, to support in forming and training CCBs (period 2004-06).
RSPN advised and worked closely with its partner the Lachi Poverty Reduction Project (LPRP) to plan and implement an advocacy programme to get government to recognize the important role communities have to play in developing and managing water resources.
RSPN supported its member RSPs: i.e. the National RSP in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and the Sarhad (NWFP) RSP in the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP) in their relief and rehabilitation work in Pakistan’s earthquake struck districts in AJK and NWFP. RSPN played a pivotal role by linking donors, philanthropists, the private sector and various projects to the RSPs in their community-managed relief efforts. RSPN has also been providing feedback to the Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) of Pakistan on feasible ways of working with affected people.
RSPN through the NRSP and SRSP implemented numerous projects in the education sector. RSPN and the RSPs worked with the governments of NWFP and AJ&K to set up temporary shelters for 228 fallen government schools, through a USAID project. RSPN and NRSP, through support from the Open Society Institute, set up 30 community-managed schools in AJ&K.
RSPN has been instrumental in providing support for the setting up of Rural Support Programmes in Punjab, Sindh and Baluchistan. As a network it is able to provide new RSPs with expertise from the RSPs and its own expertise in various fields, in order to assist in setting up similar, new programmes with government and donors.
RSPN has supported and facilitated its member RSPs to access relief and rehabilitation support since the October 8th 2005 earthquake in northern Pakistan. RSPN has accessed 10 donors’ projects for the RSPs and linked the RSPs to charity and philanthropists who went to the affected areas in the weeks following the devastating earthquake. RSPN has been actively collaborating with Pakistan’s Earthquake Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Authority (ERRA) on its policy of providing compensation for housing reconstruction in the affected areas.
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