Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Strengthening Civil Society and its Capacity to Improve Quality of Life in Mozambique

Sarah James

Founded on the ethics and values that drive inclusive progress and positive change, civil society institutions – from education and healthcare, to the arts and culture – are organisations designed to harness the private energies of citizens committed to the public good.

In Mozambique, these range from the Mozambican Association for Family Development and the Business Association for Combating HIV and AIDS, to the National Network Against Drugs, to name but a few. As diverse as they are, what they share is a drive and a commitment to improve the society that they live in, and Juntos! was designed to strengthen these efforts in a variety of ways.

The initial purpose of Juntos! was to enable these civil society organisations (CSOs) to access, create and deliver cost-effective and engaging training courses to help them address gaps in knowledge and build their skills. This is done primarily through a blended learning approach, which incorporates electronic and online media as well as traditional face-to-face teaching, as this helps to sustain this type of training far into the future.

Grupos da Sociedade Civil em Acção em Moçambique

Civil Society Groups in Action in Mozambique

Cursos de Formação Permitem uma Ampla Partilha de Conhecimento

Training Courses Enable Knowledge to be Shared Widely

Juntos! represents the development sector’s community agenda in action. Partners on the ground drive the vision, mission, and activities of the platform; decide what their training and skills-building priorities are; and write and film their own blended learning courses that are tailored to local contexts and cultures.

“Partners on the ground drive the vision, mission, and activities of the platform”

Since 2013, 20 localised blended learning courses have been created and used to increase the capacity and sustainability of Mozambican CSOs small and large, as well as to reach their beneficiaries more effectively and efficiently. Courses include:

• Communication for Health: Malaria

• Child Development Stages

• Hygiene in Early Childhood: Mouth and Teeth

• Teaching and Learning Process in the 3rd Grade: Reading and Writing

• Individual Fundraising

• Corporate Fundraising

• Proposal Development

• Resource Mobilisation

• Monitoring and Evaluation

• Financial Management

• Effective Presentations

• Facilitation Techniques

• Community Involvement

• Communication and Collaboration with Distributed Teams

• Communication Plan

• How to Write Scripts for Video Lessons

• How to Stimulate Early Childhood Development

• Malnutrition in Mozambique

• Early Pregnancy

• Sexual and Reproductive Health Law

After nearly six years, the large impact of Juntos! on Mozambican civil society can be seen clearly.

Cursos de Aprendizagem Combinada Permitem a Partilha Eficaz de Ensinamentos de Desenvolvimento na Primeira Infancia

Blended Learning Courses Allow for the Effective Share of Early Childhood Development Teachings

Observed improvements for CSOs include streamlined administrative procedures, improved project and programme management, greater linkages with academia and the private sector, improved skills as trainers, and enhanced understanding of the need to create tailored solutions adapted to target groups.

Through the training of partners and local CSOs, the increased reach of these partners when targeting at-risk groups, as well as the many events that have brought together stakeholders from all sectors of Mozambique, Juntos! has to date reached 5 million Mozambicans indirectly and 18,954 directly.

Beyond these promising numbers, Juntos! has contributed to a fundamental shift in Mozambican civil society from disjointed efforts with little impact, to a sector where CSOs trust each other and collaborate to bring about systemic changes in all aspects of society.

Members are now partnering with one another outside of Juntos! to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing Mozambique today, equipped with new skills and resources, and a foundation of ongoing support.

Grupos da Sociedade Civil Reúnem-se Para Melhorar as Infraestruturas da Aldeia

Civil Society Groups Come Together to Improve the Village Infrastructure

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