NCVO to lead civil society project in Arab Spring countries

The Building Bridges project has been set up to create more stable and inclusive societies in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia

Protests in Egypt
Protests in Egypt

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations will oversee a £350,000 project to help develop the capacity of civil society organisations in north Africa.

Under the Building Bridges project, the NCVO will take part in a three-year scheme in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia in an attempt to help forge "more stable, prosperous and inclusive societies". As part of the project, the NCVO will provide training to organisations on a range of themes, including good governance, advocacy and network building.

The project will be funded by the UK government's Arab Partnership Fund. The NCVO will work with organisations associated with the Arab NGO Network for Development and Civicus: World Alliance for Citizen Participation.

The project is part of the UK government’s response to the Arab Spring, the wave of demonstrations and protests that swept across the region mainly in early 2011.

Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the NCVO, said: "We are delighted to be involved in this exciting and significant international project. Civil society networks have real value to add and a crucial role in emerging democracies, and this project will support organisations to build their skills, share best practice and grow stronger together."

The NCVO’s previous international projects have included supporting the emergence of democracy in eastern Europe and helping to reform charity law in Japan.

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