Monthly Archives: July 2012
Civil society leaders embark on Commonwealth Foundation Leadership Exchange
23 July 2012
Eleven civil society leaders from across the Commonwealth have travelled to Delhi, India, to take part in the inaugural Commonwealth Foundation Leadership Exchange. Working with local host organisation Voluntary Action Network India (VANI), the Commonwealth Foundation has identified the theme ‘Stakeholder Engagement for Influencing Policy’ as a focus for the Exchange.
From an open application process, the Commonwealth Foundation and VANI selected eleven civil society leaders currently engaged in national and international policy development and implementation activities and who are current working in Commonwealth member states in the Asia, Africa, Caribbean, and Pacific regions. Through the Exchange, the Commonwealth Foundation will engage these leaders with a tailored programme of in-depth discussion and peer-to-peer learning.
The aims for the Exchange are rooted in the Commonwealth Foundation’s mission to develop the capacity of civil society to act together and learn from each other to improve the lives of Commonwealth people. For the last decade, the Commonwealth Foundation through its biannual consultation processes has witnessed an increased interest in the potential of participatory governance. Civil society organisations now have the opportunity to redefine the relationship with governments and feed the opinions of their stakeholders into the policy making process, supporting public participation in decision making. The Exchange aims to provide participants with the skills, knowledge and techniques to meet this need.
Participants will take an active role in the Exchange, bringing their own knowledge, experiences and expertise to train and educate their peers. They will have as much to give as to learn and the Exchange will provide an opportunity to meet other leading thinkers and actors who are challenging traditional views and methods. Participants of the programme will be supported to come together to collectively learn, coach, mentor and support each other towards achieving their goals.
Seth Lartey, Capacity Development Manager (Civil Society) at the Commonwealth Foundation said:
“Leadership is an important factor in fostering connections and guiding change. It a crucial link in the development puzzle as civil society organisations today work in a complex environment where they are constantly challenged to achieve results in the face of ambiguity and uncertainty. This calls for not just effective leadership but collective leadership.”
The programme will cover topics such as stakeholder engagement, communications as a tool for building support, partnership development, engagement on policy issues, and will conclude with participants developing a plan of action and a framework for measuring influence.
Commonwealth Foundation Leadership Exchange Participants:
• Abimbola Junaid, Nigeria
• Atif Khan, Pakistan
• Catherine Wanjohi, Kenya
• Dorcas Amoding, Uganda
• MacBain Mkandawire, Malawi
• Marrianne Burnham, Barbados
• ‘Ofa Guttenbeil Likiliki, Tonga
• Satya Sharma, India
• Dr. Alka Srivastava, India
• Hitendra Chauhan, India
• Nagendra Kumar Singh, India
On June 2nd at the second Coffee Connect Networking Session of BPW Barbados, 12 new members were installed to the club. Those installed were Jacqueline Wilson-Alleyne, Deborah Lashley, Joyanne Forde, Wendy Mapp, Sandra Britton, Sandra Walcott, Shirley Benn, Cleavon Martin, Lisa Cadogan, Ruchelle Roach, Mona Grimes and Debbie Byer.
New members pledged their support of BPW Barbados before installing officers Sheila Chase, Marva Browne, Jackie Banfield and President Marrianne Burnham. Guests included students and faculty from Quinnipiac University, and the Administrative Director of Future Centre Trust and others. Photos were taken by 12 year-old Jayde Alleyne who supported her mum Jacqueline Wilson-Alleyne at the event.
Students and faculty of Quinnipiac University shared their week long experience in Barbados in which they facilitated the “Educate to Eradicate Poverty” Self Development Programme for Unemployed Women, hosted a capacity building session on Domestic Violence at the Regional Police Training School and had a legal discussion with local legal advocates on the Domestic Violence Law, Child Protection legislation and other subjects.
The Coffee Connect Session and Installation Ceremony was a success and BPW Barbados is happy to have such talented ladies as part of their team and is looking forward to the fresh programmes, projects and ideas that they will bring. Quinnipiac University looks forward to their May 2013 visit.
Members and guests are invited to the next the next Coffee Connect Session on Saturday, 6 October, 6pm – location to be confirmed. Call 836-5070/5068 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Membership and meeting attendance is by invitation only.