The U.S. Agency for International Development’s Mali Civic Engagement Program supports the consolidation of democratic governance in Mali. Its objectives include:
- Strengthening mechanisms for bottom-up social accountability through subawards and technical assistance. This is achieved through increasing citizen satisfaction with public services in target communes; monitoring activities in water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), health, education and agriculture; and improving the advocacy capacity of civil society organizations
- Building the capacity of civil society organizations to collaborate effectively with government and the private sector to develop public policies and advance issues of common interest; achieved by helping identify and implement new policies, laws, regulations or investment agreements that promote access to service delivery or promote gender equality, as well as by training these organizations in conflict mitigation and consensus-building techniques
- Expanding citizens’ understanding of their rights, responsibilities and sense of civic empowerment using public information campaigns and civic education efforts led by civil society organizations
Civic Engagement Grants that are given to organizations over the course of the program will increase the ability of civil society organizations to provide government oversight and address citizens’ interests; strengthen the ability of these organizations to demand improved services; improve citizen access to and oversight of government, especially for those in marginalized groups; and support civic education.
FHI 360 and its partners use a variety of proven tools to achieve these objectives. For example, the Good Governance Barometer brings together multistakeholder groups to jointly define good governance, commit to action on priority issues and measure improvements over time. And, through partnerships with community radio and national television channels, we work from the neighborhood and village levels up to the national level to encourage conversation, civic education and accountability.