WACSI Grooms 15 Digital Activists to Protect CSOs from Cyber Threats
[Accra – 23 February 2023] – Civil society organisations (CSOs) in West Africa will see improvement in digital security and safety as 15 digital activists have received training to help protect the civic space from cyber threats and attacks.
Group photo of the participants.
In February 2023, the West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) trained the activists under the Hive Mind Upscaling project being supported by TechSoup.
They enhanced their skills in digital activism, safety, and literacy at the two-day community of practice workshop which took place at the Institute’s secretariat in Accra, on 9 – 10 February.
WACSI’s Head of Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning, Franck Sombo advised the activists to use technology more efficiently while being cautious, in order not to expose their organisations to cyber-attacks.
He noted that the increasing use of technology in the sub-region has placed the civic space under threats, both online and offline which require actors to look for safety measures.
“We are in a period where we have to be more aware and educated digital citizens,” he said while urging the participants to take advantage of the learning opportunity to acquire the needed skills to engage in effective digital activism.
Effective digital activism, he explained, will help protect citizens rights and freedom of expression as part of actions to advance democracy and open civic space.
Sombo said WACSI was committed to strengthening the digital resilience of West African CSOs to effectively pursue their collective mandates through its partnership with TechSoup – which aligns with the Institute’s technology for development goals.
A participant sharing ideas during the workshop.
Michael Tetteh, Campaigns and Communications Officer at West Africa Drug Policy Network who participated in the workshop was optimistic the skills he acquired would contribute to the work of his organisation.
“This initiative is important for digital activists to come together, share knowledge and learn new things,” he said.
Bilkis Kokroko, founder of the Muslimah Mentorship Network, a Ghana-based non-profit organisation, was thrilled at the knowledge shared.
The training according to her, gave her a deeper insight into the world of digital activism and exposed her to new technological tips.
“I am very excited to participate in this workshop. I will implement this new knowledge in my line of work as an activist.”
The Hive Mind Upscaling project seeks to create a Community of Practice where civil society actors and practitioners will come together to address the resilience of CSOs to foster growth and engagement of the sector.