Facilitators ready to promote civic education

Written By : SUN FIJI NEWSROOM. The training of community Civic Education Facilitators (CEFs) in the Western and Northern Division marks the beginning of outreach activities to local communities in Fiji.
One hundred participants from eight partner Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) were trained in areas of democracy, democratic governance, human rights and constitutionalism for three weeks, in Nadi and Labasa.
A session is planned for the Central and Eastern Division later this month.
With the acquired knowledge and skills, CEFs are now ready to carry out civic education outreach activities to local communities.
This is in a neutral and impartial manner after completing the National Initiative on Civic Education (NICE) training.
NICE is a project on civic education, implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on behalf of the Government of Fiji and supported by NZAID and the European Union.
UNDP Resident Representative, Knut Ostby, emphasises the importance of awareness on essential matters.
“Civic education activities carried out in these communities are crucial for promoting democracy and in helping to build a culture of civic responsibility among citizens.
The knowledge and skills acquired from the training are meant to assist civic education facilitators from partner CSOs. They will share knowledge and raise awareness on issues of democracy and democratic governance for people’s participation in decision making processes at local and national level,” Mr. Ostby said.
CSOs which will conduct civic education exercises are the Fiji Muslim League, TISI Sangam, Shree Sangam Sanatan Dharam Pratinidhi Sabha of Fiji, Methodist Church, Catholic Women’s League, Soqosoqo Vakamarama, Fiji Disabled People’s Association and Transparency International.
UNDP is providing a grant of FJD $463,360 to the CSOs.
The NICE project is a three-year project which started in 2008. The project focuses on community civic education and advocacy for citizen participation.

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