Fellow Since 2008
This profile was prepared when Emmanuel Kallonga was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2008.
The New Idea
Emmanuel believes to successfully build effective democratic governance, fight corruption, and alleviate poverty through governmental initiatives is possible when the relevant laws, policies, and programs are understood by the public, and marginalized groups in particular. He is therefore equipping Tanzanian citizens with “plain language guides” that explain complex laws and policy documents in a user-friendly way, with tools to track the use of public resources earmarked for development efforts at the community level, and measure the effectiveness of various government-sponsored programs. He is also assisting citizens to organize effective community- and village-level action groups to take full advantage of livelihood opportunities associated with governmental initiatives. Emmanuel’s public education model is addressing the gap between complex government policy documents and the communities they are meant to serve. He collects information on the most pressing policies that need to be simplified. These are identified through an intelligence network of community-based experts and volunteers Emmanuel has built across Tanzania. A strong team of policy analysts then “repackages complex government policies and puts them in simple, straightforward guides in locally accessible languages, with illustrative cartoons to help readers identify policies, programs, and livelihood opportunities relevant to them. The publications Emmanuel and his team produce are distributed all over Tanzania through a network of information access points, citizen organizations (COs), media companies, and institutions working at the national and community levels. Emmanuel founded Hakikazi Catalyst in 2000 to implement his idea, is directly engaged in program activities utilizing its guides in seventy-one villages in the Arusha and Manyara regions of Tanzania. Hakikazi has also forged strong partnerships with eighty local COs (including faith-based groups) and is helping them to develop their capacities to introduce economic and social justice initiatives in the communities they work.