Human Development Resource Centre (HDRC)
Research --- Service --- Consultancy
Ngen Junction – Nkwen
Bamenda – NW Region
Tel: +237 7765-8831
Director: A. Bame Nsamenang, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology & Counselling
Tel: +237 7725-4133
Link to new website
The HDRC is an equal
opportunity facility registered in
The HDRC blends knowledge and skills from triangulation of the methodologies of the social, behavioral, health and educative sciences into understanding and intervening Africa’s theory of the universe, human embedding in African contexts, and the participative processes of Africa’s timeless traditions and current realities.
Conspicuous in sub-Saharan
A Strategic Statement
HDRC is not a grant-awarding institution; it is a grant-seeking facility. Aware of their considerable but underused talents and skills, the founders of the HDRC initiated the laborious process of institutional building with start-off contributions from their meager resources, ready to compete for research/project grants and to seek donor charities and donations from the generous spirit of the donor and development communities.
mission of the HDRC is to generate evidence-based data on which to mount
advocacy and interventions to advance the well-being and social competencies of
Africa’s youngsters in their families, schools, communities, peer cultures,
etc. and to add value to
The HDRC seeks to:
Pilot Intervention Sites
Kitiwum in the Kumbo Central
Council and Nkwen in Bamenda
Three Council in northwest
The HDRC seeks and has established productive, collaborative networks at local, national, and international levels for partnership in capacity building and institutional and societal development. A Board of Directors and an International Advisory Board sustain the HDRC
HDRC Program Areas
I. Orphaned and Indigent Schoolchildren Assistance and Guidance
We are aware that USD 50.00 can pay the school fees and provide basic school needs to a child for one academic year. We are equally aware of the significant percentage of children who cannot obtain basic education because they languish in poverty or are orphaned and no one is available or ready to support their primary education. This program seeks to identify such children, establish their needs and offer supportive assistance and guidance to them.
II. Enhancing Positive Human Development (EPHD)
The program focus is on positive human development but with special attention on three components, namely, early childhood development, youth development, and health psychology.
Childhood Development Component (ECD): As a significant entry point for progress with
education, economic and social development, early childhood care and education
(ECCE) is increasingly being recognized as an
important strategy to achieve poverty reduction goals. Families, communities
and nations differ in capacity and commitment to it, but usually to the
detriment of children and women in general and the girl child and her mother in
particular. The goal of this program is to undertake research to illumine the
provision of services to give “a good start in life involving nurturing, care
and a safe environment” (African Ministers of Education, 2005) to children 0-8
years through evidence-based interventions with children, their families and
other ECCE stakeholders in Africa/Cameroon. The bulk of ECCE caregivers and
Development Component (YDC): The
purpose of this program is to understand and generate local knowledge, products
and services for children and youth, with the objective of improving the rich
heritage and local knowledge and practices related thereto. Reproductive and
spiritual health is a key concern of this program. The goal is to equip
children and youth with knowledge and life skills to understand and cope with
their sexuality/spirituality and to visualize and gain from the challenges of
adulthood, work life and citizenship. The HDRC is a partner on
research on spiritual development during adolescence with the Search Institute
of Minneapolis in the
Psychology Component (HPC): Human
health is context-bound. It entails an experienced reality and considerable
cultural and power differentials between client and practitioner. Most national
health systems in
III: Workforce Preparation and Productivity Enhancement (WPPE)
Most African youngsters, especially Cameroonians, are at heightened risk because they are idle. Hundreds of thousands of young people are unemployed and many are on the street or in more risky spaces; their formal education did not prepare them as job creators nor exploiter of their rich natural environments. Thus, aware of the poor work ethic and entrepreneurial deficiencies in the general population and young people in particular, the HDRC has designed this program to re-orient youth into responsible and productive values for effective and productive entry or re-insertion into the workforce through knowledge and skills training in assorted vocational fields – ICTs, dressmaking, home décor and domestic appliances, craftwork, carpentry, etc. – in partnership with local apprenticeship facilities and agencies. Considering the poor and declining work habits in the public and private sectors in Africa in general and Cameroon in particular as well as the lack of the ability for self-employment and productive work life, the program also intends to mount Vocational Training to ‘re-educate’ and re-insert both employers and employees and the jobless into productive values and practical skills of Project Making and Management and Human Services Psychology that underlie customer satisfaction, successful entrepreneurship, and profitable investment.
Training is community-oriented and focuses on the clientele, product consumers, vulnerable children/youth, fragile families/communities and the civil society at large. Its aim is to envision projects and services that can rekindle and bolster positive work ethic, customer satisfaction, agricultural production, psychological sense of community, and the family-community frontline responses through income generating activities (IGA) and other solidarity/coping strategies. It seeks to support and strengthen family, community, and civil society initiatives in participative self-improvement and community change processes. The training extends to innovative lay/peer counselling. The aim of the lay and peer counsellor training track is to creatively equip civil society, especially young people with simplified counselling knowledge, people-oriented sensitivity, life skills and techniques to prepare and dispense service projects for peasant farmers, psychosocial and spiritual support to the needy, especially the stigma and discrimination suffered by the disabled, the elderly, and HIV/AIDS infected and affected persons.
IV. Education Development and Travel Advisement (EDTA)
The program is
designed to understudy, track and advocate the relevance or irrelevance
of educational provisions and career development. It seeks to discover,
generate or create ‘new’ knowledge/products that address problems in practice
Major Project Profiles
Since 2009: Teacher Education Textbooks
and Tools Development Initiative for
1998-2008: Longitudinal Study of Infant Development and Nso
Mother-Infant Interaction: Physical interactions are important to the
development, health, and well-being of children, but levels and types of these
interactions differ cross-culturally. This project was a collaborative
cross-cultural study of mother-infant interaction with the National Institute
of Child Health and Human Development,
2003-2006: Adolescent Development and Participation Program: The HDRC was the focal point for this UNICEF Cameroon program for the North West Region. It was a youth program designed to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS through peer education and life skills. An example of a training workshop follows.
1993-Date: Lay Counsellor Training Program (LCTP). The LCTP developed in response to specific needs of a faith-based organization (FBO), the Catholic Diocese of Kumbo, whose Family Life Office (FLO) recorded an alarming number of HIV/AIDS cases in the Christian community (Lukong, 1994) and began to develop an outreach program in 1993 with a clear mission to educate the community and empower it to support and care for victims of the lethal disease. Early attempts met with difficulty because church personnel lacked the knowledge to develop an AIDS care curriculum so they consulted and sought partnership with a psychologist, the director of the HDRC. Together, the FLO and the HDRC initiated the faith-based LCTP. The HDRC assisted with the elaboration of the program curriculum and participated in the Kumbo Diocesan program from 1993-2006 and the Bamenda Arch-Diocesan program from 1997 until date. It began as an education and counsellor training program for the Catholic community, particularly those individuals living with HIV/AIDS and their families.
The initial target population was the Catholic HIV/AIDS community but we learned two important lessons from the outset. First, focusing on Catholics only was not only seen as restrictive because Catholic Christians had non-Catholics are family members and friends. Second, naming the program HIV/AIDS counsellor training would have hyped the HIV/AIDS stigma and would have discouraged many people identifying with it. In consideration thereof, we designated it LCTP for terminal disease counselling. There are no religious barriers to trainee selection into the program.
The LCTP is an ongoing partnership program run by the Catholic Diocese of Kumbo and the Arch-Diocese of Bamenda for all interested youth and adults of any religion wherein staff of the HDRC are resource partners. It trains civil society members from all walks of life selected from religious congregations, villages, and health institutions as lay counsellors for terminally ill persons, with special focus on psychosocial support to and home care of persons affected by HVI/AIDS.
1994-1996: Risk perception of AIDS/STD's, unintended pregnancy, and prevention
behaviors among adolescent students in northwest
Prof. A. Bame Nsamenang, Prof. Therese M. Tchombe, Dr. Martyn Sama, Mr. Emmanuel Fomba, Mrs. Gladys Ngoran, Mrs. Pascaline J. Fai, Mrs. Mairama Ngeh, Mrs. Florence Yuyen, Ms. Eunice Adzemye, Ms. Rose Ndonka, Ms. Sheri Nsamenang, Messieurs Kevin Njodzeka, Cornelius Wirsungnin, Prof. George Brannen, Wiiba Carolyn Brannen, and Mr. Jeanmarie Suuynyuy.
HDRC International Advisory Board
Profs.: Thérèse Tchombe (Cameroon), Pierre R. Dasen (Switzerland), George Brannen (U.S.), Alan Pence (Canada), Kofi Marfo (Ghana/U.S.), Anne Petersen (U.S.), Charles Super (U.S.), Sara Harkness (U.S.), Michael Lamb (U.K.), Rainer Silbereisen (Germany), Marc Bornstein (U.S.), Patrice Engle (U.S.), and Gustav Jahoda (Scotland).