Central Asia—Support for Stable Societies (CASSS)

Client: U.S. Agency for International Development

Duration: 2018-2022

Region: Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Country: Regional

Solutions: Fragile States

The Central Asia Support for Stable Societies activity identified and tested new methods for the prevention of violent extremism in Central Asia. The activity conducted field and digital research to identify risk and prevention factors for violent extremism. Based on the research results, the activity worked closely with civil society organizations (CSOs) in Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan to design and test developing evidence-based, practical approaches that broadened understandings of how to address violent extremism risk reduction pilot programming.

CASSS applied a public health model to research, design, pilot, and evaluate CVE programming across digital and real-world environments, in collaboration with the U.S. Agency for International Development. Through the public health model, CASSS has researched and identified risk and protective factors of violent extremism and designed pilot interventions based on these findings.

Sample Activities

  • Develop a sound research design and a clear process.
  • Examine the impacts on violent extremism and conflict risks.
  • Develop evidence-based, practical approaches that broaden understandings of how to address violent extremism.

Select Results

  • Published an article highlighting grantee Tarjumon.uz, a local media company. Tarjumon.uz developed Ali’s Adventures, an Uzbek-language cartoon that highlights positive parenting and healthy familial relations in a contemporary family. The cartoon reached 1,128 students and 369 parents, aiming to help young people develop stronger support networks and reduce their susceptibility to radicalization.
  • Conducted a mixed-methods research design with field research and online research components. The activity completed data collection in December 2019 and reported all research results by May 2020. Based on these results, the activity developed a Central Asian Violent Extremism Risk Framework to guide programming.
  • In Kazakhstan, partnered with CSO IDEA Foundation to develop and test a PVE curriculum for technical and vocational education and training colleges. Piloting with 75 students in Zhezkazgan showed that the curriculum led to significant reductions in perceptions of marginalization and significant improvements in critical thinking and self-esteem.
  • In the Kyrgyz Republic, partnered with CSO Foundation for Tolerance International to implement a mentorship program for at-risk youth in hotspot communities across the country. The program was expanded to include 102 mentees from hotspot communities.
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