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CSOs from West Africa equipped to be more professional

CSOs from West Africa equipped to be more professional

Ghana, Accra – Civil society organisations (CSOs) from four West African countries; Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, Benin and Niger have undertaken a two week training exercise aimed at enhancing their effectiveness and efficiency. This comes as the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) schooled senior management personnel of 26 partner organisations of the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) from these countries. The training which commenced on August 27, ended on September 8, 2012, in Conakry, Guinea.

This two week intensive regional institutional strengthening intervention sought to foster professionalism in programme delivery and the institutional management of beneficiary organisations. 

This training is part of a two-year capacity development intervention developed by WACSI to revamp the institutional and operational capacities of selected CSOs in OSIWA’s focal francophone countries in West Africa. Courses that were treated to reach this end include Board Development and Strategic Planning, Human Resource Management, Financial Management, Budgeting and Grant Reporting and Monitoring and Evaluation.

Mr. Assah Gustave, National Coordinator of Social Watch Benin, which comprises over 150 non-governmental organisations, pointed out that this training has provided him with the needed knowledge and skills to enhance the managerial systems within his organisation. He stressed that the training has enabled him to have the robust skills and enhanced his know-how to better govern his organisation. He strongly promised to utilise the best practices he has learned from this training to play a more effective and visionary role within Social Watch Benin.

Mr. Charles Vandyck, Capacity Building Officer of WACSI who ensured a successful delivery of the training was pleased with the commitment of the participants represented in the training. He satisfactorily observed that, “the participants were very committed. They willingly shared the challenges of their organisations as well as the managerial approaches that have functioned successfully in their different organisations. The facilitators were excellent. They understand the challenges faced by CSOs in the sub-region and were able to eloquently articulate feasible recommendations to address these challenges. And if these are implemented by these organisations, as they have opted to do, then, in coming years, civil society in West Africa would emulate the successful models utilized by these organisations.”

This training is part of a two year institutional strengthening initiative developed by OSIWA and WACSI. Both partners seek to create and empower a pool of competent CSOs in West Africa who would play exemplary roles in their contribution to development in the sub-region. OSIWA and WACSI would guide and support these organisations in 2012 and 2013 to implement the action plans they developed during these two weeks. This would guide beneficiary organisations in setting up strong, reliable and credible systems. This is to ensure that OSIWA and other funding organisations would have professional local development partners in West Africa with whom they can collaborate to achieve development goals in the sub-region.

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