More than 50 partner representatives of the Giving for Change (GfC) programme attended the opening session of the five-day partner learning and reflection meeting which has begun in Accra, Ghana.
The event which started on Monday 11 July 2022 will create a platform for the partners coming from Africa, Asia, and South America to reflect on the progress and strategic direction of the programme over the past 18 months of implementation.
This meeting is the first of its kind and will be an opportunity for the partners to strengthen relationships and identify additional opportunities to harness and scale up the programme. This may include opportunities for the GfC consortium members and national anchor partners in the eight implementing countries to champion the core thematic areas of the programme at regional and global levels.
In his opening remarks, Executive Director of STAR-Ghana Foundation, the anchor partner of the programme, Ibrahim-Tanko Amidu, said the conference would push partners towards achieving the goals, objectives, and vision of the initiative as it was an avenue for evaluating the success and challenges they had encountered over the past 18 months.
“This conference will help us go back to the vision of the alliance and continue the process of building a global movement of shifting the power,” he said.
He encouraged participants to share their stories and be intentional about creating spaces like this to learn from one another. “I look forward to constructive innovations that will challenge us, he added.”
The coordinating alliance of the programme consists of the Global Fund for Community Foundations (GFCF), the African Philanthropy Network (APN), Kenya Community Development Foundation (KCDF) and Wilde Ganzen Foundation.
Stigmata Tenge, Executive Director of APN expressed confidence that the dialogue would build on existing knowledge for achieving “a community philanthropy which is responsive.”
“Community philanthropy started long ago but there is still the need to reflect and deepen conversations in ensuring that we are finding the right road towards the destiny we are looking at, “she said.
She added that partners should dismantle systems and structures that were perpetuating inequality in their communities by mobilising resources from their communities.
In an interview with the media, Jim Chick Fomunjong, Head of Knowledge Management and Communications at the West Africa Civil Society Institute, a strategic partner of the programme explained that GfC was geared towards “re-inventing how we are doing philanthropy and seeing how best we can connect practices to promote local philanthropy.”
“We want to build an industry of local philanthropy that will help Africa’s development. Aid has certain regulations and obligations that come with it so we can not solely rely on it,” he said.
Jenny Hodgson, Director of GFCF, noted that communities in the south and north had access, knowledge, resources, and power to drive development at the local level. “We can leverage these to build and grow both citizens and communities and model an ecosystem approach where communication at the local level builds up to the global level,” she said.
Esther Meester, Program Manager at Wilde Ganzen Foundation, indicated that the meeting was timely and will ensure that partners were able to discuss their hurdles and find ways to overcome them.
The recommendations that will come from this workshop will help partners adopt a strategic direction to meet the programme goals. The workshop which was organised by STAR-Ghana in partnership with WACSI will end on 15 July 2022.
Watch some interviews with other partners and participants at the event using this link.