In September 2015, Access Bank and the CSR-in-Action entered an agreement to develop capacity for Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in Nigeria; to train at least 1000 CSOs by 2016.
CSOs have been widely recognised as the essential ‘third’ sector due to the positive influence their operations have on the state and the market. They are, therefore seen as an increasingly important agent for promoting elements of good governance including transparency, effectiveness, openness, responsiveness and accountability.
CSOs have been active in Nigeria since the 1930s and have since then grown into an increasing number of over 800 CSOs (as recorded by the Nigerian Network of NGOs (NNNGO)). The role of CSOs in sustainable development cannot be overemphasised. Unfortunately, CSO operations have been plagued with recurrent challenges, which indicate that some CSOs are incapacitated to achieve these goals. Based on research into this key sector, some recurrent challenges identified were: planning, implementation, financing, monitoring, and professional writing & communication.
Our partnership is, therefore, a tripartite approach to achieve the following through various capacity development initiatives. Our partnership aims:
- To provide affordable and relevant capacity building training to CSOs
- To inspire and drive professional ethics in the business operations of CSOs, thereby driving sustainability in social investment projects
- To create new solutions to the prevalent challenges faced by private organisations in seeking partnerships with CSOs.
So far, ten workshops have been held and has witnessed participation from over 528 persons from Civil Society Organisations on various far-reaching initiatives with diverse partners from world-class firms, including PwC, Total and Nigerian Breweries. The training is free and available to registered CSOs and NGOs in Nigeria.