Civil society organizations (CSOs) are crucial in contributing to participatory policymaking and holding governments accountable. With support from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), FSVC has been building the capacity of CSOs in Niger to efficiently manage their resources, effectively collaborate with other CSOs and constructively engage the government on policymaking.
To do so, FSVC has created CSO incubators in multiple Nigerien cities. These incubators have built the capacity of over 60 CSOs to date through targeted trainings, long-term coaching, collaborative exercises and grants. FSVC has closely monitored the progress made by CSOs taking part in the year-long incubation process. Collected data provides evidence that both their general organizational capacity and public policy advocacy skills have greatly improved.
These innovative CSO incubators have been widely successful. For example, in Niamey, three CSOs formed a consortium for the first time to implement a project on the representation of people with disabilities in the national budget. One of the CSOs reported that they found the partnership beneficial and appreciated the opportunity for mutual learning. In the city of Zinder, after participating in FSVC’s incubation program, three CSOs partnered and relocated their offices to a new common office space, which allows them to lower their operating costs. The President of one of the CSOs reported that this initiative has helped to strengthen the local associative life, thanks to increased coordination amongst consortium members. In the city of Maradi, four organizations that formed a consortium as part of FSVC’s incubation program decided to continue the collaboration, and secured a grant to jointly implement a project on girls’ education.
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The Financial Services Volunteer Corps (FSVC) is a not-for-profit organization that helps strengthen financial sectors in developing and emerging market countries. It does so with the ultimate aim of promoting job creation, economic growth and a better quality of life. FSVC structures practical, results-oriented technical assistance and training missions staffed by senior financial sector professionals who serve as unpaid volunteer experts. Over the past 32 years, more than 10,000 volunteer experts from the international financial, legal and regulatory communities have taken part in 3,400 missions, impacting millions of people in 70 countries.