CGP is working on the component description for a new ROL program. It’s one of the reasons I decided to intern in Bishkek. But we’re still in the development stage of the component and are awaiting approval from headquarters. Nevertheless I'm interested in doing whatever I can to support Mark and Ruslan as they prepare the new component.
ROL projects in Kyrgyzstan
During my first week of work, I attended a UNDP project presentation at the UN House in Bishkek and wrote up a brief for Mark. The project, Enhancing ROL in Kyrgyzstan for improved security and stability, seeks to help government agencies and CSO develop mechanisms for the effective implementation of judicial reforms to promote ROL.
A little research after the presetnation suggested that UNDP and other international orgs have conducted similar projects in Kyrgyzstan in the past usually with the same key phrases "promoting" "enhancing, or "developing" ROL, but it seems that the resulting reforms in law are rarely implmented and the various programs and legal aid offered through the project seizes when the project runs out of funding or expires. But I have hopes for CGP's new ROL component as CGP works with many local CSOs to help fund sustainable projects so that their impact may continue even after the project expires.
During the UNDP meeting at the UN House, the UNDP Chief Technical Advisor on ROL mentioned another new project that focuses on gender based violence. I know that CGP will be interested in this project because GBV is one of the key areas of focus of the new ROL component.
I am told that bridenapping is a common practice in the rurual areas of Kyrgyzstan. Bektygul tried to explain why some men resort to bridenapping, but I don't think I will ever understand. She mentioned that during public hearings about a draft anti-bridenapping law, a women objected to the law saying that there was no other way unattractive men like her son would find brides. Bekytgul says its usually the friends and family of unattractive or shy men who kidnap girls for those men. She told me that the CGP staff once witnessed a bridenapping right in front of the office. They could see that the girl was struggling because the van she was in was shaking. They tried to follow the van to help the girl but couldn't catch up; so they called the police.
Intern at Work
During the first few weeks of work I reviewed the ROL component details, did some edits and made some recommendation for ROL awareness among youth and women. Ruslan sent me a matrix of ROL and Human Rights programs in Kyrgyzstan and I did research to update the details of those projects. I also created two tables – one on demand-side ROL projects in Kyrgyzstan and then another table of general ROL projects organized by donors. The tables will be included in the new ROL component description.
With Mark in Virginia, I’m the only native speaker of English (I say native because I learned English in the US) in the Bishkek Office. Most of the CGP team speak great English, but they often need letters, press releases and other writings to be proofread after it’s been translated into English. Mark usually reviews documents before they are ready for dissemination, but since I’m physically in the office, that job is mine for now.