Traditionally, large international nongovernmental organizations (INGOs) have served as prime recipients of U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) funding, collaborating with local NGOs as subrecipients. Now, as U.S. government funders prioritize local leadership and sustainability, these roles are flipping, with local NGOs serving as prime implementing partners and INGOs as subs.

In a recent webinar, Hayley Bryant, Team Leader for Capacity Strengthening at FHI 360 and former Chief of Party for COVida, a national orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) program that was transitioned to local primes in Mozambique, spoke with the leaders of three development organizations about their experiences navigating changed partnerships with INGOs.

Gertrude Shumba, Executive Director of the Family AIDS Caring Trust (FACT) in Zimbabwe spoke about the organization’s experience of graduating to become a prime recipient of USAID funding after receiving capacity strengthening support on organizational management. FACT was originally a subrecipient of Pact on an OVC project and now manages Pact as a subpartner. In Myanmar, Pyi Gyi Khin (PGK) flipped roles with FHI 360 three years ago, becoming a prime for the first time. Nwe Zin Win, Executive Director, shared that although PGK had been implementing USAID programs for more than 20 years, they had some concerns initially about priming, but because of the trust built between themselves and FHI 360, they were confident they would succeed. Malica de Melo, National Director at International Center for Reproductive Health — Mozambique (IHRCM), also shared her experience of moving from sub to prime with FHI 360 as a partner. IHRCM now manages 12 local subpartners, as well as FHI 360.

All three leaders shared that the trust, respect, and openness developed while subbing to these INGOs were one key reason they chose to continue working with these organizations once they became prime recipients.

To hear more about the experience of these three organizations, see the full webinar recording here.