NCBA/CLUSA bases its Democracy and Governance program on the notion that thriving democracies result from a dynamic partnership of citizens and government, working together to identify and solve their problems.
NCBA/CLUSA’s work in this area emphasizes four key principles
- Democratic governance grows strongest from the base
- Citizen participation should result in tangible benefits
- Good governance is about improving people’s lives
- Engaged government benefits from enhanced trust and support
By constraining our work to these principles, NCBA/CLUSA strengthens the internal capacity of civil society organizations (CSOs) by providing valuable skills training in literacy, leadership, citizen participation techniques, and advocacy. This empowers the CSOs with the organizational skills and confidence the citizens need to interact with local governments.
Processes emphasize local community leadership, self-assessment, experiential training in mobilization and advocacy, and achievement by setting realistic results.
Simultaneously, NCBA/CLUSA provides training and technical assistance to local governments, which enhances their ability to engage effectively with these CSOs. We design our training to enhance transparency, ensure accountability and instill trust in the government.Some of the modules NCBA/CLUSA typically delivers include:
- Developing transparent governance processes
- How to improve planning and management
- Foundational knowledge of organization development
- How to set priorities
- How to develop a budget and cost-recovery techniques
Once both CSOs and local governments are prepared to engage, NCBA/CLUSA employs Citizen Participation Techniques (CPT) such as town hall meetings, public hearings, public fee setting, public seminars for information sharing, and open local government planning meetings. These techniques allow both CSOs and government agencies to continually hone their skills around real and urgent issues.
Concrete progress on resolving real life challenges promotes trust and further solidifies the partnership between citizens and government.