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  • ​South Africa in Southern Africa: ‘Good Governance’ vs. Regional Solidarity
    Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR)

    The Centre for Conflict Resolution (CCR) aims to contribute towards a just and sustainable peace in Africa by promoting constructive, creative and co-operative approaches to the resolution of conflict through training, policy development, research and capacity building.

    The Foundation for Human Rights (FHR) is a grant making institution supporting civil society organisations in South Africa and the region that implement programmes which promote and protect human rights. The Foundation's mission is to address the historical legacy of apartheid, to promote and advance transformation in our country and to build a human rights culture using the Constitution as a tool.

    The CCR, in collaboration with the FHR, is hosting a public dialogue under the theme ‘South Africa in Southern Africa: ‘Good Governance’ vs. Regional Solidarity’ on 30 June 2016 in Cape Town.

    Speakers:

    • Professor Lloyd M. Sachikonye, Associate Professor, Institute of Development Studies, University of Zimbabwe, Harare.
    • Dr David Monyae, Co-Director, University of Johannesburg Confucius Institute (UJCI)

    Time: 17h30 – 19h00

    For more about the Centre for Conflict Resolution, refer to www.ccr.org.za.
     
    For more about the Foundation for Human Rights, refer to www.fhr.org.za.

    Event Start Date: 
    Thursday, 30 June, 2016
    Event End Date: 
    Thursday, 30 June, 2016
    Event Venue: 
    Centre for the Book, 62 Queen Victoria Street, Gardens, Cape Town


  • LSTM: Health in Humanitarian Emergencies
    Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

    Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) was the first institution in the world dedicated to research and teaching in the field of tropical medicine and as we approach our 115th anniversary, we continue to be a leading international institution in the fight against infectious, debilitating and disabling diseases.  As a registered charity, we work in over 60 countries worldwide, often in very difficult circumstances, to fulfil our mission of reducing the burden of sickness and mortality in disease endemic countries through the delivery of effective interventions which improve human health and are relevant to the poorest communities.

    LSTM is conducting a two-week course on Health in Humanitarian Emergences from 11-22 April 2017 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.

    This course aims to provide students with knowledge and critical understanding of common public health problems in humanitarian emergencies. It aims to enable students to adopt an evidence-based and reasoned approach to the critical assessment and management of the problems and to develop and evaluate strategies for their prevention and control.

    Course Outline

    • Common public health problems: context and constraints to their management in emergencies;
    • Rapid needs assessment, setting priorities, goals and objectives;
    • Calculating key indicators of the health status of a population;
    • Health information systems in emergencies;
    • The primary health care approach to humanitarian emergencies;
    • Environmental health planning and management in emergencies;
    • Common epidemic communicable diseases surveillance and control in emergencies;
    • Managing specific disease outbreaks;
    • Effect of disasters on food security;
    • Risk factors for malnutrition in complex emergencies;
    • Methods of assessing food security and nutritional status in emergency situations;
    • Current approaches to the management of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency disorders;
    • Reproductive health for displaced populations;
    • Gender-based violence;
    • HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections - approaches to prevention, control and management;
    • Mental health;
    • Health promotion & post-conflict health needs;
    • Critical analysis of a specific public health problem in a current humanitarian emergency.

    10 Academic Credits – Assessments

    For an additional fee of £95, you can be entered for full Academic Credits for this course (Masters level credit, awarded by the University of Liverpool). The academic credits are offered to provide choice and flexibility to all of our students and students who do not wish to do the assessments will be awarded a Certificate of Attendance. Applicants wishing to find out more about the assessment should contact MyLSTM@lstmed.ac.uk.

    Academic requirements: 

    Any person working in international development and humanitarianism would benefit from attending this course. Also, people who work in areas of public health, health protection and disease control would benefit.

    English language requirements: 

    Attending course with Academic Credit:

    The course is taught in English. Students whose first language is not English must provide evidence of an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score of at least 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in all learning components, or a TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of at least 88 for the Internet-based Test (iBT), with minimum scores of 21 for Listening and Writing, 22 for Reading and 23 for Speaking. Tests should be within their validity period of 2 years.
    Attending course – Certificate of Attendance Only:

    The course is taught in English and in a postgraduate setting. Students whose first language is not English should be aware that to benefit from the course participants should have English language proficiency at the equivalent of an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score of at least 6.5.

    For more information, refer to www.lstmed.ac.uk/study/courses/health-in-humanitarian-emergencies.

    For more about Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, refer to www.lstmed.ac.uk

    Event Start Date: 
    Tuesday, 11 April, 2017
    Event End Date: 
    Saturday, 22 April, 2017
    Event Venue: 
    Liverpool, United Kingdom
    Event Type: 
    Training


  • Reports and Rumours About a New NPO Act – What Should Civil Society be Doing

    Most civil society organisations are probably unaware that the ‘draft NPO Bill of 2016’ was presented at a May conference hosted by the South African Accounting Academy. Possibly the reason for this unusual choice of presentation forum was that, as a representative from the Department of Social Development (DSD) had previously told a small group of civil society leaders, although the department is interested in holding consultations on the Bill, it does not have the budget to do so. DSD representatives have nevertheless affirmed that the new Non-Profit Organisations (NPO) Bill, together with associated policy documents are at an advanced stage. At the same time media reports allege that these documents are being prepared within The Presidency. While it is uncertain whether The Presidency story is true, what is undeniable is that at least some elements within the ruling party are looking into the activities of our sector with disfavour. Most recently, Minister of State Security, David Mahlobo, said that some non-governmental organisations are working to ‘destabilise’ the country. So what should civil society be doing about all these developments?

    Firstly, we would do well to remind ourselves of previous moves by DSD to amend the existing NPO Act. Given both the unexplained stop-start nature of these moves, and the actual content of draft documents released between 2012 and 2014, in CAF Southern Africa we believe that as civil society we should be gearing up for strategic coalition-building and engagement. 

    As we gear up, let us remind ourselves about the history of our NPO legislation: Following a thorough process of consultation and negotiation with civil society, the existing NPO Act was passed in 1997. The NPO Act repealed the Fundraising Act of 1978, infamously used by the apartheid government to suppress the activities of many civil society organisations. The NPO Act describes the State’s responsibility to NPOs as follows: “Within the limits prescribed by law, every organ of state must determine and coordinate the implementation of its policies and measures in a manner designed to promote, support and enhance the capacity of NPOs to perform their functions.” The key purpose of the Act was to create an enabling environment for organisations to flourish, while maintaining adequate standards of governance and public accountability.

    Although the Act made provision for a dedicated unit within the DSD to provide support to NPOs, this NPO Directorate has never been properly resourced. The components and results of this ongoing implementation deficit are only too well-known. These include lack of leadership and associated skills, ongoing administrative and technical faults, these culminating in occurrences such as summary de-registration of thousands of organisations. Finally, the lack of coordination between the NPO Directorate and other government departments and agencies such as the South African Revenue Services, continues to cause unnecessary duplication of effort and associated frustration for organisations.

    Now fast-forward to 2012 when DSD held meetings with some organisations to discuss the probability of amending the existing NPO Act. The department also organised what they called a ‘National NPO Summit’. However, only ‘welfare’ organisations directly supported by DSD were told about this meeting. 700 of these were bussed in and accommodated at the conference venue just outside Johannesburg. Out of this emerged a ‘Policy Framework on Non-Profit Organisations Law’.  This included proposed amendments to the NPO Act that suggested among other items, establishment of two new oversight bodies to regulate civil society – in other words increased government control.  Another few drafts of the policy document were circulated, some additional discussion - never made public - happened within a working-group structure hosted by DSD, and then from early 2014, all went very quiet.

    Now that we know that the long-delayed Bill has been resurrected, and even though there has been no chance for civil society to comment on the draft so far, there are definite opportunities further along in the legislative process. Fortunately our Constitution, South Africa’s most ultimate law, safeguards the rights of citizens to participate in political processes. Within the Constitution, the Bill of Rights forms the cornerstone of our democratic freedoms. It includes the right to freedom of expression, access to information, freedom of association, political rights and the right to peaceful assembly and demonstration. The Bill of Rights also stresses the right to fair administration, while an important obligation is placed upon the state to respect, promote and fulfil these rights.

    South Africa has in other words an enabling Constitutional framework for public participation - a framework which civil society can and should now invoke in respect of contributions to the new Bill. While much of the legislative process is technical, we need to understand and engage with it in order to ensure the best outcomes for civil society. According to the website of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development (DoJ&CD): ’The preparation of a Bill involves a number of steps, for example the investigation and evaluation of the legislative proposals … and consultation with interested parties.’’ DoJ&CD further reminds us that before a Bill is tabled in Parliament it goes to the relevant Cabinet Committee and thereafter to Cabinet for approval.  Once Cabinet has given its approval the Bill is then released for public comments. After several further steps the Bill finally reaches the relevant Portfolio Committee. According to DoJ&CD: ‘’When the Portfolio Committee considers the Bill, it is regarded as the best time to lobby for changes or to protest against the principles contained in the Bill.’

    Minister Mahlobo’s recent comments are disturbingly reminiscent of contentious content in what was apparently the last draft of the 2014 policy document, for example: ‘’ … registration of foreign NPO’s must be compulsory, considering the risk of money-laundering and financing of terrorist activities.’’  While no one would dispute that reasonable regulation is required, that global terrorism is real, and indeed that some organisations have not conducted themselves transparently, the current top-down response by government seems to be contradictory to the most fundamental principles of our democracy. Does South Africa really intend going down the reactionary path already taken by more than thirty countries that have already proposed or passed laws that close the space for civil society agency?  https://futureworldgiving.org/2016/06/03/appealing-to-the-enlightened-self-interest-of-partners-to-reinforce-civil-society
     
    There has to be a better way. Civil society needs to mobilise in accordance with the processes provided within our legislative framework. Above all we should ensure that when the new NPO Act emerges from Parliament it includes a clear statement of fundamental principle to the effect that civil society’s independence from government is affirmed and secured.  

    • Colleen du Toit chief executive officer at CAF Southern Africa.

    CAF Southern Africa will be convening at least one consultative forum to discuss civil society contributions to the new NPO Bill. Other organisations working in this area will be doing the same.  Watch this space.

    Photo Courtesy: Getty Images



  • ​ICPS: Professional Certificate in Technology and Development
    International Centre for Parliamentary Studies (ICPS)

    The International Centre for Parliamentary Studies (ICPS) exists to promote effective policy making and good governance through better interaction between Parliaments, Governments and other stakeholders in society.  The ICPS’ primary focus is the empowerment of Human Capital through capacity building. To this effect, the Centre organises a range of training programmes, conferences and Policy Discussions to address current public policy issues on the International Stage, in the European Union and the United Kingdom.

    ICPS is conducting a course on Technology and Development from 3-7 October 2016 in London, United Kingdom.

    Sustainable Development Goal 17.8 emphasises the importance of technology for sustainable and equitable development, urging nations to ‘enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology’ for least developed countries by 2017.

    This course will provide those working in development planning with a clear understanding of the way technological innovation acts as an enabler of sustainable economic growth.

    Interactive learning will support participants’ understanding of the key themes around technology for development, such as regulatory frameworks and new trends to incentivise the use of technology within and by governments, as well as the private sector. By examining technological innovations, best practice models and the role of international agreements, participants will leave equipped to implement large-scale change in their organisations, supported by strategic thinking, precise monitoring and evaluation, and stakeholder engagement.

    A comprehensive analysis of the principles and dynamics behind technology and development will be provided, with subjects to be discussed including:

    • Information and communication as drivers of development;
    • World technology uptake: the state of play;
    • Overview of technical aspects of ICT;
    • Responsible innovation for technology and development;
    • Mobile phones, social media and rural empowerment;
    • Making strategic choices for technology and development.

    Experts in the field will lead this training through interactive workshops, lectures and best practice case studies, fostering innovation, creative learning and networking amongst peers.

    Upon completion of this week-long course and subsequent written tasks, the successful candidate will be awarded a Level 5 CMI certificate in Management & Leadership showing the CMI units achieved. The CMI is the only chartered professional body in the UK dedicated to promoting the highest standards in management and leadership excellence. The professional qualifications offered by the Institute are internationally recognised and sought after.

    Learning Outcomes

    By the end of the course the delegates will be able to:

    • Lead effective organisational change;
    • Apply the key principles of technology and development to their organisation
    • Improve technology uptake and responsible innovation whilst reducing social inequality;
    • Monitor, evaluate and enhance performance; and
    • Deliver services that more equitably meet stakeholder needs.

    How You Will Benefit

    • The opportunity to gain a recognised professional qualification;
    • Hear the latest insights, research and developments in technology and development from leading experts;
    • Network and share ideas with colleagues from around the world; and
    • Enhance your skills and knowledge in utilising technology for development.

    To register, refer to https://bookings.parlicentre.org/book.php?event=GJ03/PCTD.

    For more information, refer to http://telecoms.parlicentre.org.

    For more about the International Centre for Parliamentary Studies, refer to http://telecoms.parlicentre.org.

    Event Start Date: 
    Monday, 3 October, 2016
    Event End Date: 
    Friday, 7 October, 2016
    Event Venue: 
    London, United Kingdom
    Event Type: 
    Training


  • ​IAJ: Social Media as Source and Platform
    Institute for the Advancement of Journalism (IAJ)

    The Institute for the Advancement of Journalism (IAJ) is an established media journalism and communications training institution based in Johannesburg, South Africa. The IAJ was set up by veteran South African editors and journalists to provide mid-career training to media professionals that is leading edge and relevant to the rapidly-changing media landscape. The IAJ is South Africa’s premier provider of journalism and communications short courses, longer-term mentorships, and residency programmes, with an African footprint and global reach through our international partners.

    The Communications Unit trains non-governmental organisation, corporate and government communicators to work effectively with the media. The Unit offers short course skills training on Core, Advanced, and Masters levels. Drawing on top communication expertise, the Unit provides consulting services and tailor solutions around client needs.

    The IAJ is conducting a course on Social Media as a Source and Platform 18-19 August 2016 in Johannesburg.

    No journalist or media organisation can afford to ignore social media.  Not only do many stories unfold completely online, it provides unmatched insight into stories as they unfold.

    Social media can also boost readership, get into readers’ heads, stimulate conversations and publicise the publication.

    However, journalists’ careers have been abruptly ended with an errant Tweet, stories and images from Facebook have led to legal battles, and many journalists feel poorly equipped to deal with the additional burden of ‘socialising’ online.

    This practical training course will have you:

    • Completely up to speed on twitterisms;
    • Staying up to date on the breaking news, big stories and trends;Finding great sources for stories;
    • Crowdsourcing ideas and information;
    • Using URL shorteners and tracking retweets;
    • Using lists to filter your incoming tweets and contacts, helping to sort the news from the noise;
    • Generating story ideas from various platforms;
    • Sourcing experts, helping you to grow your contact base;
    • Writing tight, effective tweets of 140 characters or less;
    • Creating a name for yourself in the social media universe;
    • Using social media to promote your publication and yourself as a professional;
    • Making important ethical and law-compliant calls on information usage and distribution; and
    • Using different social media synergistically to maximise impact.

    Who should attend:
     
    This course is for any journalist, news editor, editor, communicators who needs to get to grips with social media to promote their company and keep their career on an upward trajectory. It is particularly useful to investigative journalists and journalists who need to get to the bottom of stories using social media.
     
    Time: 8h45 – 16h00
     
    Location: IAJ Offices, Richmond, Johannesburg

    Who to Contact: Gugu Ndaba, Email: gugun@iaj.org.za or Maki Mathe, Email: print@iaj.org.za
     
    Area of Concern: All Platforms
     
    MICT Seta accredited, Unit standard: 117555, NQF Level 5, 10 Credits if you submit a POE
     
    For more information, refer to www.iaj.org.za/calendar/eventdetail/511/-/social-media-as-source-and-platform.
     
    For more about the Institute for the Advancement of Journalism, refer to www.iaj.org.za

    Event Start Date: 
    Thursday, 18 August, 2016
    Event End Date: 
    Friday, 19 August, 2016
    Event Venue: 
    IAJ Offices, Richmond, Johannesburg
    Event Type: 
    Training
    Location: 
    Johannesburg