In 2008 poeta will open an additional 14 centers for

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in public-private sector cooperation. In 2008 POETA will open an additional 14 centers, for a total of 61 POETA centers in eighteen countries in Latin America. POETA graduates, even after the program’s training, find it hard to get a job that enables them to earn a living and become independent. Community organizations play a crucial role in the development an expansion of POETA, The daily management, budgeting and operation of the centers is handled by the local partner, additionally, POETA graduates often return to the center as volunteers. Microsoft Unlimited Potential program provides the Trust with the tools and performance assessment benchmarks for POETA. Quarterly reports are submitted to Microsoft by the Trust every three months to summarize the achievements and current status of all centers for the donor. For these reports, each local submits a comprehensive program update to the POETA program staff at the Trust which is then compiled and submitted to Microsoft via a web portal. This information includes current statistics such as number of participants trained and number of graduates that obtained jobs and also new strategic partners formed. In addition to these formal reports, local partners are in constant contact/communication with POETA staff at the Trust, voicing any concerns or requesting any support they might need. This close relationship helps the Trust to keep local partners on track and continually assess their progress. The programs major achievements include: Improvement in peoples living conditions including women and children, Better co-ordination and integration between various actors, organization or institutions, Changes in local, national or regional social, economic and environmental policies and strategies, Improved institutional capacity at the national, sub-national and local levels, Changes to local or national decision- making, including the institutionalization of partnerships, Recognizing and addressing specific opportunities and constraints, Changes in the use and allocation of human, technical and financial resources at the local/national level and Changes in peoples attitudes, behavior and in the respective roles of women and men. Sustainability is the key to the success of POETA. Before opening a POETA center, the Trust in developing local partnerships which bring substantial funding and donations in kind to the project. In each new program country, the Trust performed a needs and project viability assessment so as to form partnerships with a specific number of local organizations in an effort to guarantee the continuity of the different activities offered by the project, as well as their ability to eventually assume the full financial responsibility for each POETA center. A comprehensive sustainability plan for each center is developed jointly by The Trust and the local partners during the first year with the support of local private and public sector organizations, to promote activities that generate new financial resources and job opportunities to the program’s beneficiaries.
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