28 CSOs Acquire Innovative Strategies to Boost their Organisations’ Sustainability 

28 CSOs Acquire Innovative Strategies to Boost their Organisations’ Sustainability 

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[Abidjan, 3 April 2024] – Francophone West African partners of Open Society-Africa (OSF Africa) have praised the organisation for investing in their operational capacities to ensure sustainability during its transition. 

This commendation came after the partners completed a five-day training on resource mobilisation and organisational sustainability, funded by Open Society-Africa and facilitated by the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). 

Held from 18-22 March 2024 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire’s capital, the training was described as a “game changer” by the participants. They believe it will revolutionise their resource mobilisation endeavours and position them for sustainability. 

Group photo of participants

“It is my first time participating in such a training focused on the sustainability of organisations. I appreciated the approach used by the facilitators,” remarked Fatoumata Diallo, Communication and Public Relations Manager at Club des Jeunes Filles Leaders de Guinée (CJFLD). 

“The modules were rich and met all my expectations,” she added, pledging her commitment to applying her newfound skills to improve resource mobilisation efforts within her organisation. 

During the training, the participants explored resource mobilisation techniques, leadership and change management, stakeholder and donor mapping, among other topics, gaining valuable insights that they intend to leverage to create robust sustainability and resource mobilisation plans. 

Participants in a group discussion

“We had a plan, but I believe it can be more robust. When I go back to my organisation, we will review it and make it better drawing insights from this training,” remarked Ahmed Sekou Diallo, Executive Director at Association de Formation et d’Appui au Développement (ONJ AFAD). 

“We extend our gratitude to Open Society – Africa for this learning opportunity. I also want to appreciate WACSI and our trainers for providing us with quality resources,” he added. 

During the training, the 28 participants, primarily leaders of 28 civil society organisations (CSOs), selected from across Francophone West Africa, engaged in case studies, practical sessions, and role plays, acquiring essential skills and new techniques to transform their organisations. 

“The modules were contextualised to our respective countries, making it easier to relate. I also appreciated the warm atmosphere created by our trainers, which encouraged shared learning and creativity,” remarked Mame Léna Kanouté, Director of the Universal Access to 

Telecommunications and Digital Inclusion Programme at l’Institut Panafricain pour la Citoyenneté le Consommateur et le Développement (CICODEV Afrique). 

Participants paying attention in a session

“Thank you very much, Open-Society Africa and WACSI, for this opportunity,” she added. 

Facilitating the training, resource experts from WACSI, Farouk Alhassan, and Melissa Juisi, emphasised the need for organisations to adopt a “can do spirit” and embrace a mindset of possibility when applying the techniques from the training. They believed this mindset shift could fuel their efforts in mobilising resources and implementing sustainability plans. 

“In order to achieve the desired results, it is crucial for us to discard the mindset of impossibility,” stated Juisi. 

“We understand it can be tough sometimes. But with determination, we can apply effective resource mobilisation plans that will yield results,” remarked Alhassan. 

Six of the CSOs were from Benin, six were from Senegal, and five came from Niger. Guinea and Cote d’Ivoire were represented by five and three CSOs, respectively, while three CSOs hailed from Mali. 

They included  No-Vox Côte D’Ivoire, Association pour la ycluded No-Vox Côte D’Ivoire, Association pour la ecluded No-Vox Côte D’Ivoire, Association pour la hcluded No-Vox Côte D’Ivoire, Association pour la edynamisation de l’Élevage au Niger (AREN), Action Mines Guinée, ASAPSU, Cellule Balai Citoyen, Azhar, Congafen, Likoleh, SOS Civisme, ONG PHD, and Femmes Solidaires pour le Développement (FSD-Bénin), among others. 

A participant presenting on behalf of her group

The others were Jexiste, Association Béninoise de Droit de l’Homme, Alliance des Femmes pour l’Égalité des Genres en Guinée, Groupe d’Action pour le Progrès et la Paix, FAWE Bénin, Win Sénégal, SEESD, and ONG MOJEDEC. 

Also in attendance were Association Béninoise d’Assistance à l’Enfant et à la Famille (ABONG PDH), Changement Social Bénin, Songes Niger, Bien-Être de la Femme Rurale, Le Gabou, Seneplus. 

A similar training for some 31 CSO partners of OSF Africa from English-speaking West African countries was organised in Accra Ghana from 19 to 23 February.  

WACSI is particularly pleased with the opportunity to strengthen the capacities of the organisations in resource mobilisation and sustainability, as it aligns perfectly with the Institute’s 2023-2027 Strategic Plan. 

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Fiifi is a Ghanaian and currently serves as Communications and Information Officer at the West Africa Civil Society Institute. He joined the Institute in December 2020.


Nancy is a Ghanaian and currently serves as Programme Officer in the Knowledge Management unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute. She joined the Institute in January 2021.


Agnes is a Ghanaian and currently serves as Head of the Administration unit in the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in October 2021.


Doris holds a Bachelor of Arts in Social sciences (Economics and Sociology) from the University of Cape Coast. She is passionate about impacting young lives hence co-founded Impart Foundation. A non-profit organization which seeks to empower young lives through education, technology and entrepreneurship.


Prince Akowuah is a Ghanaian and currently the Programme Assistant in the Translation Unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in 2020.


Maxwell Apenteng is a Ghanaian and joined WACSI in September 2010. He provides gardening and janitorial services at the Institute.


George Adu-Mintah is a Ghanaian and currently the Protocol Assistant/Driver at the West Africa Civil Society (WACSI). He joined the Institute in October 2006.


Ibrahim Kwaku Gbadago is a Ghanaian. He joined the Institute in 2008 and provides janitorial services and assisting the institute's errands. Before joining the Institute, he worked at the Palestinian embassy in Accra, Ghana.


Ruth Yakana is from Cameroon and currently the Receptionist at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in 2020.


Bethel is a Ghanaian. He provides technical and IT related support to the Institute. He joined the Institute in October 2006.


Whitnay Segnonna holds a Bachelor’s Degree in International Management from the University of Benin. With 2 years of experience, she has a strong knowledge of organizational and project management. Combined with her bilingualism, she is very passionate about her work. She joined WACSI as Project Assistant on Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) for the Capacity Development Unit.


Stella Yawa Wowoui holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Translation Studies. She has a perfect grasp of both French and English, as well as an intermediate level in Spanish. She is currently working as a Project Assistant on the Techsoup Project.


Kwame is an experienced IT Consultant/Software Developer. He is skilled in Web Applications Development, Digital Security, Database Management, Digital Marketing and Brand Management. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Information Technology and is a Microsoft Programme Alumni. He is currently serving as a Marketing and IT Officer on the Techsoup Project.


Grace Akpene Ziggah is a Togolese and currently the Logistics Officer and also assists in administration duties at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in June 2009.


Lilian Dafeamekpor is a Ghanaian and currently the Assistant to the Executive Director at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in 2020.


John P. Frinjuah has expertise and interests in civil society, international development, democracy and governance, conflict, crisis, and security. He has extensive experience working with civil society and international development organizations where he supported and managed research, programmes, and provided technical assistance on a variety of themes around public policy, governance, and development. He is an alumnus of the University of Ghana and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy - Tufts University in the United States, with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from two institutions respectively. John speaks English, French and several Ghanaian and regional West Africa languages.


Gervin has extensive international development experience, including 5 years of policy advocacy and capacity building of grass root organisations. He has implemented over the years a combination of agriculture value chain, livelihood, food security and governance and rights programmes.
Prior to joining WACSI, Gervin worked on two USAID projects focusing on agriculture value chain development and governance in northern Ghana
Gervin holds a master’s degree in development & Governance from the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany as well as a Masters in Global Studies from the Universities of Vienna (Austria), Leipzig (Germany) and California (Santa Barbara), USA. He is passionate social justice and inclusion.


Leandre Banon, Beninese, joined WACSI in September 2014 as Capacity Development Programme Assistant. Since then, he has worked in various units within the Institute to support operational and institutional capacity strengthening programmes for civil society in the region. Currently serving as Capacity Development Programme Officer at WACSI, his main responsibilities involve designing, planning, implementing and monitoring capacity development programmes for civil society constituents and grouping across the West Africa. Leandre is a certified Change the Game Academy Programme Trainer. His background lies in the areas of economics and development planning.


Samuel Appiah is a Ghanaian and currently the Programme Officer in the Finance and Administrative Unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). He joined the Institute in May, 2016.


Jimm Chick Fomunjong, Cameroonian, joined WACSI in May 2018 as the Head of the Knowledge Management and Communication Units of the Institute. He has over ten years’ experience as a journalist and a development communications expert. He has a vast experience in supporting African organisations to strengthen their internal and external communications, building and sustaining relationships with the media and, leveraging on the power of social media to promote their mission. He is also excellent at supporting organisations to set up and operationalise functional communications and knowledge management systems. He has a deep passion and expertise in supporting Africans and African civil society organisations to document their praxis, share and learn from experiences documented from the African civil society sector.


Franck Sombo is a development practitioner with the drive to lead self and others to influence productivity and efficiency. His work involves supporting organisations to develop strategic plans, design monitoring and evaluation systems, develop and use relevant performance measurement tools to track progress, assess organizational growth and institutionalise learning. Franck has eight years of experience working with WACSI where he currently serves as the Head, Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning. His academic qualifications include Masters in Organisations’ and Projects’ Management, and in Business Sciences and a High National Diploma in Finance and Accounting.

Franck is a Fellow of the International Program for Development Evaluation Training (IPDET) and a graduate of the Graduate Training Institute (GTI) - Ghana with specialization in Strategic Management and Corporate Leadership. He has a rich experience in Project Management, Capacity Development, Strategic planning, Data Analytics, Monitoring and Evaluation, Training and Facilitation, Mentoring and Coaching among others.


Omolara is a development practitioner and advocacy strategist with over 15 years of progressive experience in development programming targeted at strengthening civil society in West Africa.

She joined WACSI in November 2009 as a Regional Advocacy Consultant and later became the first Policy Advocacy Officer of the Institute in 2010.

She was promoted to Head of the Policy Influencing and Advocacy (PIA) Unit in 2015. As the Head of the PIA unit, Omolara offers strategic direction to the Institutes’ ambitions to connect and convene groups of organised and organic civil society actors; and influence regional and global discourses on crosscutting policy issues including—civil society regulations, sustainable development goals, civic space and enabling environment, aid effectiveness, gender equality, and civil society accountability.

Previously, Omolara served as a Programmes Associate with the Women in Peace and Security Network-Africa (WIPSEN-Africa), where she worked with her team to design and implement pan-African programmes on—multidimensional peace support operations and gender mainstreaming in security sector reform in Ghana, Sierra Leone, and Liberia.

She also served as a Service Development Marshal at TVQ Consulting Group, a customer service firm focused on designing strategic customer relationship and business growth plans for private and public financial institutions in Nigeria.

Omolara is a social justice advocate, a network weaver, and a convener. She has a postgraduate degree in Peace and Conflict Studies; a degree in International Relations and History, from the University of Ibadan and Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria respectively.

She also holds executive certificates in Behavioral Science in Public Policy from Harvard University Executive Education in Cambridge and in Citizen Advocacy from the Coady International Institute, St Francis Xavier University in Canada.


Kwabena Kroduah is a Ghanaian and currently heads the Finance Unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). He joined the Institute in January 2008.


Charles currently serves as the Head of the Capacity Development Unit at the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). Charles has over 10 years of experience working in international development and social justice issues in Africa. Charles has expertise in strengthening civil society and public agencies including the design and implementation of governance and leadership programmes, development of knowledge pieces and policy advice. Charles was the founding Board Chair of Innovation for Change (i4C)-Hub Afrique, as well as the founding member of the International Consortium on Closing Civic Space (iCon), an initiative of the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington DC. Charles currently serves as the Member of the Governing Board (Coordination Collective) of Africans Rising. He is a Member of the Development Studies Association, United Kingdom. Charles is a 2017 Stanford University Fellow for Nonprofit Leaders and a certified Change the Game Resource Mobilisation Trainer.


Nana Afadzinu is a Ghanaian and currently serves as the Executive Director of the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI). She joined the Institute in October 2010.