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Activista-Gambia Chapter develop 3-year strategic plan

Jan 20, 2012, 12:18 PM | Article By: Abdou Rahman Sallah

Members of Activista, in collaboration with NGOs and government agencies, at the weekend concluded a three-day forum on the development of a strategic plan for Activista-Gambia chapter.

The forum, held at Gambian Christian Council along MDI road in Kanifing, was supported by Action Aid The Gambia.

The plan, according to officials, would provide the sense of direction for the smooth operation of the network in the coming year and the plan will also serve as a guiding tool in its operation as a network.

Annsofie Jespersen, lead moderator at the forum, said Activista is an international youth network which is in 29 countries globally.

It is affiliated with Action Aid to embark on campaigning to end hunger at community, national and international level to influence policies to change international trading system, Jefferson said.

According to her, Activista Gambia was  piloted under ActionAid-Gambia and has now been set in all regions and schools in the country to support in advocating for social change, and this has a broad prospective in schools’ activities such as school gardens, poultry and school canteens.

She noted that Activista as an advocacy group  meets  women farmers - who produced about 70% of the  food, National Assembly Members, and regional governors to discuss with them some of the constraints  they face on the ground as far as farming is concerned and try to promote their agenda at the House of Parliament  for due consideration.

Gibrill Barry, PEO, School of Agriculture and Environment Unit under the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE) stated that MoBSE has found Activista-Gambia Chapter a genuine collaborator and partner in promoting and pushing the agenda of MoBSE in achieving the goals of PAGE – the Programme for Accelerated Growth and Employment.

“One of the critical areas that this group will support is to enhance the management of agricultural and environmental activities, which is the extracurricular activities, particularly school gardening systems,” Mr Barry said.

He noted that the school gardens are not only about food but also for teaching and learning laboratory teachers in integrated science and environmental curricular, adding that the MoBSE, through SAFMU unit, collaborates and networks with CBOs, NGOs and other relevant stakeholders to enhance the achievement of education strategic goals for quality accessible education for all and sundry.

Lamin Saidykhan, national coordinator for Activista-Gambia chapter, said Activista is ActionAid global youth network that brings young people together to fight for social change, issues affecting youths and complement ActionAid’s efforts at ending hunger.

Their achievements, he noted, include supporting the alliance campaigning of refusing to signing the EPA, annual hunger campaign called journey to end hunger, which are all bearing fruits as the government was able to increase the agriculture budget, organise step down training for 64 members as volunteers on leadership and social media as well as the establishment of Activista clubs in 35 upper basic schools across the country.

He added that the plan developed would pave the way for the members to be able to have a sense of direction in designing and implementation of the network’s programmes and activities in a coordinated way within time limit.

For her part, Ms Kaddijatou Manneh, the vice chairperson of Activista - Kanifing Municipal Region, said Activista aimed at empowering young people to actively participate in decision-making and political processes that affect their lives and built their capacities to create social change for sustainable development in complementing ActionAid’s efforts at ending poverty.

Activista, she said, has four components, namely campaign, capacity building, shared learning, and organizational development. These culminated together to a strategic plan that was developed to lead the way for the smooth operation of the organization.