CSOs outline steps for greater engagement ahead of Global Financing Facility learning meeting

3 FEBRUARY 2016 | DAKAR, SENEGAL

More than 33 civil society representatives from 21 organisations which also included participants from the decentralised regions of Senegal, met in Dakar for two days ahead of the Global Financing Facility (GFF) Information meeting hosted by the World Bank and the Ministry of Health. The purpose of the meeting was four-fold: to share outcomes from the GFF Nairobi meeting; introduce the Global Financing Facility to Senegalese civil society organisations (CSOs); present the Minimum Standards; and find ways to coordinate the national CSOs for their participation in the GFF process in the upcoming Country Platform.

The meeting kicked off with a presentation on the updated Global Strategy for Women’s, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health, to set the stage and show the linkages between the GFF and the Global Strategy.

Participants expressed their appreciation of having a convening space to engage as a reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health (RMNCAH) platform around key advocacy issues. The meeting also helped clarify questions participants had about the Global Facility. The meeting stressed the need to involve CSOs in the national investment case discussion as they were advocates, as well as service implementers, and needed to be part of the decision making process. Some recommendations that arose from the meeting included:

  • A call for the RMNCAH coalitions to get organized and coordinated into one national coalition, as opposed to fragmented platforms working towards the same goals;
  • A call to create a CSO GFF coordinating group, to prepare a strategy and action plan on engagement in the Country Platform;
  • A call for the Country Platform to include CSOs into the design, implementation and review of the national investment case, however the focus was much on monitoring and accountability;
  • GFF country platforms to recognize the value and central role of CSOs in delivering health services in remote areas, requiring representation at the national level;
  • A call to recognize CSOs’ diversity and to have 6 representatives in the Country Platform;
  • A call for the Country Platform to adopt the Minimum Standards and be inclusive, participative, transparent and accountable; and
  • A call for the Country Platforms to provide access to key resources and funds around advocacy, accountability, and resource mobilization.

A signed declaration (based on the Minimum Standards) was prepared by CSO representatives and read to the Minister of Health on 5 February, during the World Bank learning event. This was well received and acknowledged by the Minister and all participants, as a key ingredient to the success of the GFF process in Senegal.

The CSO pre- meeting to the GFF information meeting was organized by The Partnership Regional Focal.