Who We Are

The West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) was established by the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) in 2005 to reinforce the capacities of civil society in the sub-region. The Institute became operational in July 2007.


A peaceful and prosperous West Africa where development is driven by its people.


We strengthen civil society in West Africa to be responsive, collaborative, representative, resilient and influential through knowledge sharing, learning, connecting and influencing.



WACSI’s core values are the driving force of its operational and institutional standards. These values characterize the Institute’s unique approach towards the capacity development of civil society organisations in West Africa. WACSI’s core values are:


We practice what we preach. We model our work to empower CSOs by setting exemplary leadership and standards of organisational management and governance.


We are the hub of an efficient, effective, influential and sustainable civil society community in West Africa that reflects the region’s rich socio-cultural diversity.


In all our activities and relations with partners, we strive for excellence as the minimum standard in the quality of our work.


Our strategic partnership approach is one of our key assets. We value and foster partnerships, networks and strategic mutual relationships with relevant development stakeholders.


We believe in and respect the principles of equity, inclusion and non-discrimination. We are committed to working with all persons, without discrimination, to promote open, democratic and developed societies in West Africa.


We abide by the highest ethical standards of transparency, accountability, mutual respect and integrity.


We value the people we work with; we recognise that our staff, interns, volunteers, resource persons, beneficiaries and partners are the backbone of our operations.


We constantly explore creative ways to strengthen civil society. We are agile and responsive to the changing needs of our stakeholders.

Learn more about our strategy for 2018-2022, click here for the abridged version and here for the full version.

Regional Focus

Having understood the challenges that development practitioners face in the West African sub region, our creative and custom-made interventions continue to respond to operational and institutional challenges of national and regional civil society institutions in Liberia, Nigeria, Togo, Benin, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire and Senegal. In the near future, the Institute will also focus on invigorating, the capacities of development practitioners in Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Gambia, Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau.