PCFS holds Regional Thematic Consultation on Development Effectiveness of CSOs
A consultation on Development Effectiveness of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) was held to gather the insights of CSOs working with marginalized groups in defining the international framework of CSOs as key actors in development. Grassroots organizations and support non-governmental organizations with work among farmers, fishers, pastoralists, indigenous people, women and migrants from 11 countries participated in the event.
The activity is organized by the People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS) as part of the Global Facilitation Group of the Open Forum for CSO Development Effectiveness. The Green Movement of Sri Lanka (GMSL) hosted the consultation which was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka on January 22, 2010. The event is part of the Open Forum’s three-year process of building consensus among CSOs worldwide on the principles in improving the development effectiveness and minimum standards for enabling environment for CSOs.
To familiarize the participants on the CSO development effectiveness process, Lyn Pano, Secretary General of Asia Pacific Research Network, gave an introduction on the Open Forum, its objectives and the process it is carrying out towards improving the development effectiveness of CSOs. She explained that it is an essential course that the Open Forum is undertaking towards the High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness to be held in Busan, South Korea on November 2011 wherein CSOs will be asserting the shift of agenda from aid effectiveness to development effectiveness.
Gilbert Sape of Pesticide Action Network Asia Pacific and Arjuna Seneviratne of GMSL shared the principles on CSO development effectiveness which the attending CSOs approved in the First Global Assembly of the Open Forum held in Istanbul, Turkey in September 2010.
The broad principles were then expounded and concretized by Azra Sayeed of Roots for Equity as she explained about guidelines, mechanics and indicators on CSO development effectiveness. She gave guide questions and examples on how the guidelines, mechanics and indicators on CSO development effectiveness can be responsive to the needs and situation of CSOs working among marginalized groups in their practical work.
Poguri Chennaiah of APVVU talked about the enabling environment for CSO development effectiveness. He cited some challenges that CSOs encounter in their interaction with governments and donors. He also posed calls that CSOs may take up with governments and donors so that an enabling environment for CSOs to be most effective in their work may be created.
During the workshop, one group discussed what would be the best guidelines, mechanisms and recommendations in implementing the principles of development effectiveness of CSOs working with marginalized groups. While another group identified challenges in the enabling environment for marginalize groups to be more effective development actors and they recommended steps that can be undertaken to overcome the identified challenges.
The results of the consultation will be submitted to the Open Forum as contribution of the CSOs working with marginalized group in the CSO development effectiveness process.