Humanitarian Missions

Project “ Synthetic” for “ West Africa“

 a. Economic and Social Development Program

b. International Cultural Broker                                                        

c. Coordination of the psycho-social services will

Economic and Social Development Program for States: Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana e Ivory Coast


–  The Development Program of the Priory Melitense (S.O.M.S.J.) for states Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, takes into consideration the complexity of the needs specific to the economic and social development of the territory of and then introduces them into an “international conception, which incorporates the programming of development, to which customary resources (regional and national), as well as additional ones (at community and international level, for underdeveloped or unused areas) will contribute in a simultaneous and synergetic way”, respecting the unitary nature of territorial programming according to the principles of integration and concentration of resources and interventions, contributing to the development of the local economy “in such a manner as to design a vast array of high quality projects which can be actually implemented in a short while”.

– The Economic and Social Development Program of the Priory Melitense (S.O.M.S.J.), in its provisional conception, defines the country’s development strategy by resorting to a division into sectors and constitutes the main framework for territorial development initiatives.

–  The general objectives identified with regard to the concerned territory and the technical plans clearly led to the identification of the specific objectives, interconnected through a relation of a functional and complementary nature.

–  The specific objectives led, by means of a logical and functional process, to the establishing of concrete, practical initiatives. The latter consisted in large categories of activities and projects aimed at achieving the specific objectives and distinguish themselves from the actual, individual projects (which can be identified with the help of the qualitative and quantitative outcome indicators and which will constitute, in a subsequent stage, an Appendix to the Program).

–  The development program, as structured, cannot fail to include those actions that are essential for the implementation and unification of sectoral policies through a complex approach of the development process.

– Amongst other things, it is essential to identify these strategic and infrastructural interventions: their achievement and completion are decisive for the local community as far as the development of the important sectors of the local economy or even, in some cases, of the entire system, taken as a whole, is concerned.

–  The Economic and Social Development Program of the Priory Melitense (S.O.M.S.J.) for states Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, is inspired from and based on ideas that have already been consolidated during previous development programs: it will develop these ideas within a general and complex development program, according to the State Strategies and will create a structure that will use the logic of the Program for the following purposes:

1.  the promotion of the economic recovery initiatives, completed with the purpose of consolidating and developing the entrepreneurial sectors.
2. the intensification of the methodological approach, in such a manner as to stimulate the constant involvement of the international and socio-economic partnership, “in a stage like the current one, in which not the competition between the production agents and the entrepreneurs is important, but the socio-economic reconstruction of the production network and of the social network after the post-elections crisis, in order to capitalize on and optimize the enormous capital of resources that the of Africa, has always had.

The program suggests an approach based on the development of the capacity of the territorial systems of contributing to local development, after a first essential stage which makes provisions for external aids, according to the principle of self-reliance (based on one’s own forces) which capitalizes on and develops all the territorial resources (endogenous development potential), seen not as data, but as an (urgent) product of the growth dynamics, given their self-assessment and self-support possibility, which we consider to be a fundamental and crucial objective for the complete economic and political autonomy of the State.

The role of public administration in overcoming the difficulties related to the promotion of local and international development programs is also emphasized in relation to the centralization of the socio-territorial systems.

For these purposes, we suggest the setting up of a Joint Observatory comprised of members appointed by Governments and representatives of the S.O.M.S.J. priory; this would act as a control body on the “Program Management”, without being limited to mere supervision, being a genuine laboratory designed for the achievement of the following projects:

–  promotion of the projects

–  deepening of the knowledge and use of this knowledge, through internal experts, depending on the actions necessary for the implementation of various projects and for overcoming any bureaucratic-legislative obstacles which hinder the continuation of the activity.

–  ongoing verification of the way in which various projects advance and of their outcomes.

–  endorsement of the initiatives for the support of local development processes, either by guaranteeing the reproduction capacity of various resources or by taking action in order to improve the competitive capacity of local products and network activities meant to put local economies on the local map.

For an optimum functioning of the design and work activities, we suggest for some “consultative round tables” to be organized, with experts elected by the “Joint Observatory”, whose duty is to organize and plan the various project stages.

The fields of action of the Economic and Social Development Program of the Priory Melitense (S.O.M.S.J.) for states: Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, are the following:

– environment resources, cultural resources and tourism

– underground resources

– agriculture

– production, business, innovation activities

– training, professional training, workforce

– socio-sanitary policies, cooperatives and associations

– security

The round tables “of mutual consultation” will work at two levels:

–  analysis of the characteristics of the territory and of its actors, as well as of the production-reception contexts, of current and estimated trends, for the purposes of identifying the problems related to local development.

Accurate and efficient programming is actually the result of a comprehensive and thorough analysis of the problems that must be examined and of their consequences;

–  based on the analyses conducted in this respect, one will define the development strategies that are consistent with a clear and firm vision concerning the territory, through which one will be able to identify the general and specific objectives which will be pursued, as well as the connections between various objectives, results, actions and resources within the overall frame.

 Thus, it will be necessary to develop the territorial local system:

–  by geographically marking the interrelations amongst subjects (partnerships),

–  by assessing the possibility of activating, for short time periods, the interrelations that are missing,

–  by expanding the project to those sectors involved by the adopted programming instruments (such as agriculture, cultural assets and tourism),

–  by intensifying the organizational capacities of the local networks, by identifying and taking advantage of territorial resources, of the duration and stability of the networks, especially with regard to the capacity of self-reproduction and stability in time.

Chapter 1 –   Guidelines

From this perspective, the program is aimed at proposing a unitary vision concerning the project, which exceeds the agricultural and rural realities, homogenizes traditions and the geographic context that have always conditioned territorial development, still representing a significant source of activity and income. The transformation processes requested in the mentioned sectors, on the one hand by international rules and market rules and, on the other hand, by the incompatibility of entrepreneurial structures, by poor competitiveness or by the absence of support structures of commercial activities make necessary, in this case too, the adoption of some strategies that have already been applied by international partnerships, that are urgent and crucial and that treasure the role of agriculture within a frame of socio-economic development specific to the concerned territory, enabling the overcoming of the numerous obstacles which affect this sector.

The program also focuses on the central role occupied in the territory by agriculture and zootechnics, promoting a hypothesis centered on the primary sector as a basic sector for the support of the development of complex, multisectoral planning, capable of having an impact on:

–  the forest sector

–  the reorganization of water resources

– the agro-industrial branch: necessary transformations, commercialization, development of the basic and additional activities

–  the intensification of specific production, such as, for example, medicinal plants, etc.

–  the protection of the environment and of the territory, taking advantage of the landscape and of territorial parks

–  the development of energetic resources (biomass, water resources, hydro-energetic, wind, sun power stations, etc.)

–  the development of the touristic sector

–  the preservation and putting to good use of cultural resources and assets

–  the development of the fishing industry, the transformation and conservation of fish products

–  the development, as part of the branch specialized in product transformation, of enterprises centered on the processing of the waste resulted from agricultural production, oriented towards the recovery of essential products and the reduction of polluting factors

–  the fair exploitation of precious raw materials

–  the development of services and the improvement of life quality.

This requires knowledge of the complex interactions between soil fertility and the availability of resources such as water, air, biological and mineral resources, that is, knowledge of the relations between the agricultural sector and the environment.

We have thus identified a couple of principles which enable an economic system to be productive without bringing prejudice to the environment.


Chapter 2 – Strategic objectives of the Program

Based on the ideas presented in the “Introduction” and in the above mentioned “Guidelines”, the strategic objectives of the Economic and Social Development Program of the Priory Melitense (S.O.M.S.J.) for states Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, can be synthesized as follows:

1. Promotion of the development of the territory and of its resources, from a market oriented perspective, according to a vision that does not rely on relations of dependence, but on the creation of the premises for the exploitation of local resources and domestic products. Creation of the premises for the integration of the environment resources, cultural and touristic resources by means of the jointly adopted development strategies.

2. Capitalization on the potential of the agricultural sector and improvement of the yield and competitiveness of local output on the market by overcoming the various obstacles and constraints that are the result of exogenous and endogenous structural inefficiency.

3.  Creation of occupational opportunities, increase of the degree of development and reduction of the migratory flow through the intensification of competitiveness amongst companies, increase of the infrastructure and material level, as well as the defining of a territorial marketing strategy.

4. Capitalization on human resources by adjusting the training system to territorial requirements and to the requirements on the labor market.

5.  Development of the policies for social promotion, improvement of life quality, overcoming of social marginalization through actions taken at several levels: cooperative (aggregate), sanitary and social structures.

6.  Development of economic synergies, including by establishing diplomatic relations with countries that do not have a relation with states: Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, such as the countries in the Balkans, where the S.O.M.S.J. is already presented in an active manner.

7.  Capitalization on the touristic sites such accompanied by the touristic promotion of these sites in European countries.

8. University Courses and Courses of Applicative Technical Training, by setting up University Institutes such as “Academy Tiber”, and “The Melitense University”, which will have, apart from professional training courses, faculties of humanistic sciences meant to complete the curriculum with religious knowledge (Afro-Islamic Studies of the Arabic Language and Culture; Christian and Orthodox Theological Humanistic Sciences).


Chapter 3 – Program organization

As already mentioned in the Introduction, the political and administrative level often slows down local development practices and that is why something must be done with regard to the key topic of local bureaucracy (which exploits the resources, but remains far from the real needs of local development), as well as with regard to the unsolved issue of political influence in the management of administrative activities. This problem hinders the development of bottom-up and of democratic development strategies.

The possibility of elaborating a complex and solid project in terms of scientific and lucrative contents, as well as a methodology adjusted to the needs of territorial actors, should be supported by the public administration, which should strive to eliminate bureaucratic obstacles and the dividing of procedures.

It thus becomes obvious that it is necessary to set up a Joint Observatory focusing on the quality of Public Administration, which would function as a stimulus and as a control body of the way in which the procedures related to projects advance.

The Observatory is primarily aimed at becoming a laboratory which would:

1. deepen the knowledge of the role of Local Administration as a promoter of the development process

2. constantly verify the way in which various projects evolve and their results

3. support local development initiatives

The Observatory will also have the role of supporting the methodology observed for the elaboration of the Plan (with focus on the constant involvement of the international partnership and of the socio-economic partnership within a process of consultation with regard to the various roles and responsibilities, enabling the decision making processes of the public actors to be accompanied by the cooperative and synergetic proposals of the private subjects for the purpose of increasing value oriented standards), including throughout the implementation of the Plan.

This seems to be the most pertinent model for the elimination of social exclusion risks and for the actual observance of the principle of equal opportunities, being the only model capable of guaranteeing the reduction of the conflict rate, as well as the homogeneity and convergence of behaviors in relation to the established objectives and to the resulting operations.

This method is all the more useful during a stage such as the current one, when competition no longer occurs between producers and entrepreneurs, being rather the result of the capacity of socio-territorial systems of combining and organizing the activities of economic, institutional, international and social subjects.

It has been established that the “consultative round tables” will be preserved throughout the entire duration of the Social and Economic Development Program and that these round tables will be comprised of representatives of the Order, local institutions, economic, social and cultural forces that will work on this project, with focus on various topics:

–  environment resources, cultural resources and tourism

–  underground resources

–  agriculture

–  production, business, innovation activities

–  training, professional training, workforce

–  socio-sanitary policies, cooperatives and associations

In order to subsequently stimulate civil conscience with regard to the current policy renewal, it is possible to make people aware of the necessity of transforming the role of Local Administration in “Investors in People”.

Based on all these reasons, it is necessary to conduct a preliminary analysis of the project per se, which should constitute a permanent database with the help of a territorial Observatory of economic and social transformations: this can be the center of research and analyses that would be useful for obtaining a database which would constitute a basis for policy making, as well as the place for the elaboration of jointly established interventions amongst all territorial actors and for the monitoring and assessment of these interventions.

In this respect, a central place is occupied by training aimed at broadening the skills necessary for the implementation of the projects meant to render the territory valuable. The introduction of technological (at product and process level) and managerial innovations will have to adjust to the role fulfilled by the university institutes.

We may thus notice the necessity of defining a plan with regard to the skills of the youth, depending on the local development priorities.

In the context of the Social and Economic Development Plan for states: Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast, it becomes obvious that it is necessary to promote actions meant to establish relations and start a dialogue with other countries and markets, as a natural consequence of this plan.



For the purposes of coherent development, the Sovereign Order Melitense of Saint John of Jerusalem for Social Assistance actually puts itself at the disposal of the Governments in order to achieve active cooperation, coordinating its actions with those of the Public Administration so as to elaborate and implement the projects and initiatives necessary for an appropriate process of renewal and implementation of the economic and social system of what will always be the western “Lighthouse” of Africa.

International Cultural Broker

For all the collaborators of the Grand Priory Melitense SOMSJ that will be used in west Africa will deepen international cultural issues in order to become “cultural brokers” getting in touch with the culture and the local peoples of the countries where they will go to work,  making  their  experience on the ground. The theory is a necessary factor, but the practice is essential to know and understand and distinguish the various ethnic groups, although they may appear similar or identical in some ways and customs, with every ethnic group you have to make somewhat differently, both their religious beliefs, tribal customs, legislaturesimposed by village leaders or healers, and especially to understand which relations of friendship or enmity with the other ethnic groups of their own country. The information (the Vox Populi, Vox Dei) is very important in the African continent,  therefore,  should not be belittled rumors of olddiatribes that for generations remain more or less lives in an ethnic group and the other, or a village and the ‘other, because a non-null  could trigger unfortunate  and bloody  scenery. This is the right approach should be taken and must be absolutelyunderstood that in every place where you will go to work, you must enter on tiptoe and in the right way in this colourful world that is Africa.

 A European cultural broker, fit for the Order Melitense S.O.M.S.J’s Project  should have these features:

Having a certain age, because if too young, how good he is in his work, by the Africans would not even consider:

1.  Education: High School Diploma instead (certificates of specialization) obtained in Switzerland or in the country of origin.:

2.  Languages: fluent language of the country where will operate.

3. Features: autonomy, organizational skills, motivation andwillingness to work in heterogeneous environments informal contexts.

4. Professional experience: years of experience in different ields: nurses, carpenters, mechanics (both vehicles, which any other type of water pumps), electricians (either with the basic knowledge about the groups that excellent electronic, photovoltaic ect.), teachers, computer, drivers, masons, carpenters, experts incommunications, etc.etc.

The international mediators should be full of enthusiasm, focusingon culture and African authenticity, on the full acceptance of all social elements, men and women, animists, Muslims and Christians, who belong to different ethnic groups and social castes, without making any distinction of any kind, and everything we do everyday, must target more than, greater awareness of the needs and the needs of others, behaving in this way affect “the long term” of reciprocal positive changes, more important even to a substantial and momentary gift of money.

All the logistics for this cultural platform “of the Grand Priory Melitense SOMSJ” will be ‘structured in the state of Albania. The Order Melitense, to take advantage of the project and encourage cultural exchanges, chose 7 states geographically European and 8  states geographically Africans, who are:

1. Albania,Macedonia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia, Bosnia Herzegovina, and Moldova.

2. Guinea, Niger, Nigeria, Mali, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Ivory Coast.

The reason for this choice, and ‘due to the simple but important fact that these popolazini, though not equally in some African populations have experienced traumatic and painful vicissitudes,such as war, deportation, persecution and religious policies , as well as’ bullying of any kind over the last century.

We of the Grand Priory Melitense S.O.M.S.J. have decided to trainmediators of these 7 were geographically in Europe, because the same (having a mind already prepared and experienced the helpof his fellow men, and life experiences, if not equal, but similar to the populations they will encounter) have essential peculiarities to form in turn, the cultural mediators, in the African states where they’re going to work.

Psychologists, experts in ethnopsychology  and Transcultural Psychology steer the cultural mediators to  the right approach with the local populations where will have to work , in the various structures of emergency work or scattered in the various states involved in the SOMSJ project.

There will be  international cultural mediators European, but it will also form local cultural mediators, who speak the language of the state in which they reside, but also the various dialects of ethnic groups or tribes, so that we can understand and act in the best possible way to teach locals new works by utilities for their village, for this reason, will be prepared rooms (like classrooms)where the natives under the direction of cultural mediators, which, by applying simple educational systems teach them a job.

The mediators should have a base of: psychosocial counseling, training, career counseling applied. Design and implementation ofinterventions and research in favor of interethnic coexistence,operations support, counseling, psychotherapy.

It ‘very important for all of our nurses or nurses who are qualified as mediators (European or Local) to understand the family structure of the different belonging communities and transformational processes that cross in the course of the migration process, in fact, the migration from one territory to another is a very common practice in West Africa,the reasons for this migration can be varied like: famine, floods, wars, tribal or national epidemics etc.etc.

Our teachers have to teach the relationship “of self and other”,encourage socialization, mutual support and solidarity of thefamily, but especially children trying to provide opportunities to integrate teaching them to read and make it in writing for the most children , and the help biggest  in the study.

Create (again if the location permits) a space for discussion andsupport for the relationship between different cultures, from injuryto the collaboration and recognition of diversity.

Increase relations and exchanges between citizens of the territory reinforces the ties within the local community. Pay attention to the quality of relationships through the recognition of the expertise of each mediator involved in the project. For school-age children,adults and families with special reference to immigrants, this space must be managed by a team of cultural mediators in continuous dialogue and formative interdisciplinary .

Encouraging initiatives to facilitate good relations through knowledge and appreciation of diversity and cultures, thereduction of prejudice, improving dialogue between the groups present in the area.

It is important to offer help to victims of abuse and violence,working primarily for the prevention and treatment of distress, social exclusion and indifference.

Cultural mediation is aimed at all audiences, not only to the publicat a disadvantage: the cultural mediation has never been neutral,but is the result of choices, answers and goals.

NOTE: The mediators of the Grand Priory  Melitense SOMSJ Project, in addition to being specialized in the most varied work activities, they are really experts in communication and mediation, must try also made intercultural relations in the context of art, so that ethnic groups, know ownself, accept and appreciate how ever done so far.

Coordination of the psycho-social services will

–  Establish and build relationships with local population

–  Manage the service within the structures of psychological treatment for patients showing that there need to address issues related to this matter

– Adjust the service of linguistic and cultural mediators within the structures to facilitate dialogue between the neighboring populations to health centers and staff who will be placed inside the structures.

In the initial phase of the project will also want to contact the populations  trying to involve them in the beginning stages of simple technical interventions within sites (phase of construction site and building structures) and then offering their chances of employment after a prior aptitude test and objective ability to perform tasks necessary for the functioning of the various operations and ancillary services provided in the project.

Will therefore have the delicate task of overcoming the natural barriers and distrust that are established when, in a territory, a sudden fit of “entity” is not provided.

Therefore the conduct of this activity will have different temporal phases and operational throughout the period of site preparation, health requirements and functional performance of the project.

In fact, in the first period of impact, a number of operators will interface with explaining the nature of the population, the employment opportunities that may be offered and the type of personnel required as you will then have to explain the forms and types of assistance provided by staff from these facilities

overeign Order of Saint John – Knights of Malta