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Marco Meneses, MPH, MS-- The terrorist attack I suffered in Somalia, 1994-- Resume-- Sudan with CARE, 1993-- Angola: 1991-1992

Marco Meneses

Provincial Team Leader

CARE- Sudan- 1993


My experience with CARE was very positive and I learnt a lot; after that I had the opportunity to apply much of the knowledge gained with CARE in other locations around the world, like in Angola and Somalia. And currently, I speak basic Arabic, thanks to the language training provided by CARE EGYPT and CARE SUDAN.


  1. New York

During my orientation in New York, February 1993 I had different interviews with Pedro Soto (audiovisuals)  Stephanie Brown (project management), Barbara Yearwood (shipping), Robert Bell (Food Program Unit) etc. I had an intensive 2 weeks orientation and training. Basically the orientation in NY was focused toward personnel policies and procedures for international staff.

2.      Egypt

In CARE’s office located in  El Cairo (Egypt) 10 February 1993,  I received another orientation about Multi Year Planning System, including socioeconomic review, country plan strategy and project plan documents,  Monthly Summary Reports,  TAG (Technical advisory groups), food as incentive, personnel policies and procedures, CARE financial manual all under the direction of Mr. Geofrey ( project Officer). Basically the orientation in El Cairo was focused toward Finances and Budgeting and AIP (annual implementation plan)

March 1st, 1993, after I returned from my training in Aswan and before to departure to Sudan, I had the visit from CARE New York, of Ms. Jeanne Downen for a Program overview.

In Aswan (Egypt) February 17, 1993 I received training about Field Office administration PIR (Planning and Implementation Report) inventories, procurement, cash flow, payroll, personnel. Basically the orientation in Aswan was focused toward field office management and administration and community involvement. In that time, the director of the CARE office was Mr. Mohammed Ashraf and the training officer was Mrs. Iman Hussein.


  1. Sudan

In CARE Khartoum (Sudan) March 5, 1993 the orientation was basically about project management, implementation and evaluation. The Assistant to the Director was in that time, Mr. Ellis Franklin and the director was Mr. Ruddy Ramp.

In Bara, I worked in the development of the Human Resources manual for the office, the organizational chart and revision of all job descriptions. I began to work deeply in the basic areas of my responsibilities:

  • RELIEF PROJECTS: Food Assistance Program in Kordofan State ( free food distribution and food for work) and Seeds distribution program
  • HEALTH PROJECT: Child Health Survival Project (MACHI-BARA) the heart and core of my assignment, Maternal Health project


LIAISON with local Non-governmental and Governmental Organizations. Local ministry of agriculture, Agriculture Bank of Sudan, Forest National Corporation, Ministry of Health, national Rural Water Corporation and Ministry of Health.

We applied in our projects, the 6 CARE international principles at that time:

1-   Addressing significant problems

2-   Working with poor people

3-   Participation (communities and counterparts involved)

4-   Adaptability (from small to larger scale)

5-   Sustainability (maintain and develop our project as a development process)

6-   Fundamental change (affect the lives of the participants in a significant way)


We made mission wide strategy clustering all CARE’s activities (multisector activities). Making of the Bara’s maternal, child health, water and relief projects for all of them under the same (one) administrative structure.

We tried to keep the Government involved in the early stages of the projects; the Ministry of Social Welfare and the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning. We informed them of project activities through regular visits and periodic visits. We contacted National Security agencies and kept them informed about our activities and travels. Excellent relationships were maintained with the RRC Relief and Rehabilitation Commission.

KDROG, Kordofan Drought Relief Project Operations Group had an important paper to play as counterpart.

Our Community approach worked through extension, education and communication with Bara’s staff, community support, village extension workers and local project participants from the community

We had in our projects in Bara a special concern of the women’s situation: low health nutrition status, lack of accessibility of income, high fertility rates, long hours of hard physical work, low levels of literacy (82% illiteracy national, 93% rural)

From the administrative side, I personally reviewed the annual project work plans (MBO), PERT (program evaluation and review technique), budget, vehicles, agreements and the construction of the CARE Bara office.

Our framework for action in Bara was in the following programming sectors:

  1. Emergency response
  2. Agricultural and natural resources
  3. Primary Health Care
  4. Extension and education
  5. SEAD, small economic activity development, stoves,


All the above programming sectors articulating CARE’s community management approach to all its development and relief programming.

Geographic foci: North Kordoban State and Khartoum.

Food Assistance Program in Kordofan State:

For general relief, free food distribution program the operational area included 4 provinces of Northern Kordofan: Sheikan, Bara, Nahud, Sodari.

Estimated total beneficiaries in Bara and Sodari: 456.000 and for Sheikan and Nahud: 801.800. Duration of the project: March 93 to March 94. The program coordinator was Tom Hurley and the cooperative unit was KDROG. Total cost: $ 5’564.493 US. I was the person in charge of the coordination for the province of Bara.

Please note, that although the province of Um Rawaba was part of Northern Kordofan, the agency in charge of giving assistance was Save the Children.

CARE had been working in North Kordofan since 1982, with the emergency food crisis in 1984-85 and the harvest failure in 1990.

The basic food-assistance program for 93 was in the form of free food distribution of cereal from WFP, pulses from EEC and oil from USAID. The recommended rations were: 400 gr. of grains, 50 gr. of pulses and 30 gr. of oil per person, from March to December 93. For the selection of beneficiaries, we took in account, basically the vulnerable population under 5 years old, in coordination with the provincial, rural and village councils. There were provincial food assistance teams made of the provincial food assistance coordinator, field agent supervisor and field agents. The technical assistance was provided by NAFAPU (nutrition and food assistance program).

We had a monitoring and evaluation system through FACTS (food assessment commodities tracking system) for tracking goods movements and inventories and the Nutrition /food information system. The field agents made bimonthly samples at random, the program staff made the bimonthly MBO’s based in the program implementation plan and were the quarterly reports (named also, progress reports).


Bara Maternal and Child Health Project:

The target population was Bara town, Bara rural, Tayba, Um Keredium and Genejiskh and Um Dam (the last one in connection with the Um Rwaba rural council.

  • The total target was 50.943 (20%) from a total population of 253.449 women.
·         The maternal mortality was 655X1000


Team Leader, which overall all the projects ( Marco Meneses)

Project Manager responsible for planning training and extension, management of field workers, prepare bimonthly objectives and quarterly reports.

Technical Advisor, gave technical assistance and assisted the project Manager in relation with medicines, goods and community development

Field Coordinator, which monitored the impact of the project.

Account Officer, responsible for the Bara’s Office finances.

Recently when I arrived to Bara, the Maternal and Child Project was under a technical and managerial evaluation (I never saw the results of the evaluation). The personnel in charge of the evaluation:

  • Kate Burns: NGO liaison coordinator-Global program in AIDS, World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland
  • David Adriance: CARE Sector Coordinator Water and Health,  Nairobi, Kenya
  • Nawal Mahomoud Ahmed, Director of Primary Health Care, Ministry of Health, Khartoum, Sudan.


In May 23rd, we had a 24 hours field visit by Ms. Jeann Downen, Deputy Regional Manager for East Africa.