CATALYSE: Communities Acting Together

A Governance in Action Guide and Toolkit

A presenting speaking to a group of people.

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CATALYSE is Mercy Corps’ approach to mobilising communities, developed and honed through years of research and practical experience that show that the most effective community mobilisation efforts engage with the attitudes, norms, and practices of both individuals and groups. Our evidence-based and proven methodology promotes community members’ ownership of decision-making and iteratively builds their knowledge and skills to carry out those decisions. This approach incorporates tools, principles, and practices that can be adapted to any context or programme.

The CATALYSE Guide provides a basic understanding of the process of mobilising communities, introduces the eight-step CATALYSE cycle, and outlines strategies and principles to keep in mind when designing, implementing, and evaluating mobilisation efforts. In addition to outlining an approach, this guide includes a framing to support teams as they design, implement, and evaluate programmes using CATALYSE. A companion to this guide is the CATALYSE Toolkit, which breaks down techniques for implementing the approach.