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CBOs and knowledge sharing for effective community engagement

The Mobilising for Development’s one-day learning and reflection workshop afforded community-based organisations, CBOs, in Garun Mallam local government area of Kano state the opportunity to share knowledge, experiences and best practices about effective CBO management

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“We can’t quantify the immense benefits M4D has brought to our organization as before the coming of M4D we were not organized in terms of running our CBO around issues like managing finances, monitoring and evaluation and documentation,” said Ahmad Isa, the vice chair of Garun Mallam Youth Progressive Movement, GYPM, one of Mobilising for Development programme’s CBO partners in Garun Mallam local government area, LGA, of Kano state.

Isa, who was speaking during a workshop on learning and reflection organized for community-based organizations in the area by DFID’s Mobilising for Development Programme recently added that M4D had encouraged them to, among others, make leadership of GYPM more participatory and democratic including the involvement women and People with Disability, PWDs, in their activities.

“With the involvement of women, we are already seeing improvement in our activities. Before, it was difficult for us creating awareness on the importance of ante-natal and post-natal care for pregnant women, now it is easier as our women members do that on our behalf and therefore more pregnant women go to hospital which means less women die of pregnancy-related ailments in our community,” he said.

The one-day workshop was part of Mobilising for Development Programme’s efforts to strengthen the capacity of its CBO partners towards improving their engagement with policy makers and decision-makers for effective service delivery in Garun Mallam, according to Ahmad Muhammed, M4D’s deputy team leader.

“It is one thing to train people and entirely another for them to be able to apply the knowledge and skills they have acquired in running their organisations. The idea for the workshop is for the CBOs to learn from each other how to improve their capacity to engage with policymakers and decision-makers towards better service delivery in their communities,” said Muhammed.

Sahnunu Madaki, M4D’s community development outreach officer in Garun Mallam told African Newspage that it was much easier for the CBOs to learn from one another than to be given capacity building by experts.

“It is much easier for the CBOs to learn from one another than to be given capacity building by us, whom they may see as being high-level. Seeing fellow CBOs do things successfully encourage other CBOs to copy easily,” said Madaki

Abdulmumini Zakari is the chairman of Taimako Group, another CBO working in Garun Babba community of the LGA.

Zakari also said the learning and reflection workshop had afforded CBOs in Garun Mallam the opportunity to share experiences and best practices on the management of CBOs including how to organize and run general meetings.

“Garun Babba community and the LGA now have good understanding; we can now engage with policymakers and decision-makers around development projects in the LGA on issues like repairing damaged roads in the community. People now learn to take ownership of projects executed by the LGA and therefore the need to ensure such projects are well maintained,” he added.

Sa’adu Ahmadu, the chairman of the association of Peoples With Disability, PWDs, in Garun Mallam LGA, who was also at the learning and reflection event described the event as an opportunity to share experiences by CBOs and learn best practices from one another.

“Prior to the coming of M4D in Garun Mallam, we were not being included in policymaking and decision-making by the LGA. We now know our rights and are involved in whatever the LGA does which has really empowered us,” said Ahmadu.

 

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